Blog Series: Are You Prepared for the New Experience Battlefront?

Reverse Engineering the CX to Outmaneuver Competitors and Delight Customers.

Digital has transformed the experience battlefront

Gaining market share has always been a battle — a battle to outperform, outmaneuver, and outsmart competitors to win customer loyalty and dollars. But the battlefront brands fought on for decades is unrecognizable in the digital age.

Why?

  • The terrain has changed completely and continues to rapidly evolve.
  • There are far more enemies now—many you may not recognize as such.
  • The usual arsenal of marketing weapons and tactics is no longer effective.
  • Now you must forge new alliances within your organization; you can’t succeed on your own.
  • Marketing is seen in different forms and as distinct teams: Experience, eCommerce, Digital, Product, Corporate, Operational, etc.

 

To win the battle you need more than just good products and services or a big marketing budget. Winning hinges on your ability to deliver a GREAT customer experience (CX) each and every time your customer interacts with your brand. In fact, by 2020, 81% of marketing leaders say they expect to be competing mostly or completely on the basis of CX.[1]

Many industry giants have already fallen on this new battlefront, unable to satisfy customers in the new digital landscape —think Toys R Us, Radio Shack, Polaroid, Blockbuster and Kodak to name a few.

Did you know that “since 2000, 52% of companies in the Fortune 500 have either gone bankrupt, been acquired or ceased to exist as a result of digital disruption.”  And Gartner predicts there will be further casualties, believing 75% of the top 100 global consumer brands will lose 20% of their brand equity value to declining brand perception and loyalty by 2020. Let’s face it, the writing is on the wall for companies like Sears, JC Penny, and Kmart. And Payless just announced it’s closing all 2,100 of its US stores.

Why are these giants dropping like flies? Most of these brands failed to understand the power of digital to disrupt, influence, motivate, and connect with customers. They also failed to recognize the power shift between brands and consumers. These brands remained focused on traditional sales models, on promoting products instead of innovating to meet customer needs. When they did finally realize their misstep, it was too late.

Case in point; Kodak invented the first digital camera in 1975. But Kodak’s management was so worried the product would negatively affect film sales that they wouldn’t approve its launch. Despite its potential to lead the digital camera market, the company completely missed the digital revolution. Kodak didn’t fail because it missed the digital age, it failed because the company was too nearsighted to see that it was not in the film business, it was in the storytelling business. ultimately went bankrupt in 2012, the same year Nikon and Samsung released their first digital cameras!

So, what do digital cameras and film have to do with the customer experience battle? Everything!

Kodak failed to adapt to a new marketplace and new consumer attitudes and keep customers happy.

What’s the secret to avoiding Kodak’s fate? You have to adapt to the requirements of the market. The digital revolution changed the rules of battle for Kodak and every other company, and it continues to do so. Companies are no longer competing on reach, brand recognition or price. Instead, customers are far more interested in convenience, speed, personalization, user experience, consistency and relevance.

Customer experience is the new battlefront. Your brand is now competing against the BEST experience your customer has ever had; think Amazon or Netflix.  Your customers want an exceptional experience with your brand, whether they’re interacting with you via your app, your website, in store, over the phone with customer service, or through social media.

So where do you start? The good news is that you can meet this gold CX standard with the right strategy and technology. But first, it’s critical that you understand how the experience battlefront has changed—what the rules are, who your enemies are, what alliances you need to form and what weapons and tactics you need to employ.

This post kicks off my four-part blog series: Are You Prepared for the New Experience Battlefront? Reverse Engineering the CX to Outmaneuver Competitors and Delight Customers. Watch for my next blog in this series where I’ll discuss how the terrain of the battlefield has radically changed, and explain why you have far more enemies than you realize.

In the meantime, check out our latest ebook, Are You Prepared for the New Experience Battlefront?, to learn more.

[1] https://www.gartner.com/smarterwithgartner/key-findings-from-the-gartner-customer-experience-survey/

About the Author

The Aprimo Mobilizer represents a collection of experts at Aprimo who have specialities across every industry we serve. From in-depth analysis to groundbreaking ideas, articles published under Aprimo Mobilizer demonstrate some of Aprimo’s brightest minds addressing complex marketing challenges.

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