Not all the changes that have happened in the last two years will remain with us, but one area that has been transformed is communication with customers.
A personalized approach that favors the digital channel is to be expected, and “new” ways of working are no longer new. Customers have more power in their hands than ever. Companies will have to accept this and adapt to it to attract and, more importantly, retain customers.
Not only that, but most of the digital transformation that took place at the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic was short-lived. In a world full of unpredictability, companies now need to look at how to remove these temporary measures and replace them with solutions that will be used in the future.
Digitally primary, but not digitally the only one
Circumstances caused by the pandemic have spurred the digitization of business processes including communication with customers. Users have embraced the digital approach and expect it now, along with a high level of personalization. Both end consumers and B2B customers expect companies to know their specific needs.
The key to personalization is channel preference. As Canon’s Insights Report study showed, the pandemic has seen a massive shift in digital communication. But it also potentially predicts and affects the power of the press. Studies have found that the print media is the most trusted of all media available in marketing today. Website advertising, through social media channels, is the least trusted medium.
When planning their strategy of communicating with customers, companies should keep in mind the generational differences. Younger generations typically prefer digital-dominated methods, such as texting and live chat, embracing self-service and chatbots. The pandemic has pushed older generations toward digital as well, but organizations need to support and understand these new users as well as those who remain offline.
Securing the future for success
The landscape of communication with customers has changed, customers have found new power and organizations need to adapt quickly. But how do they really adapt and use the new situation?
The key is a strategic, holistic approach that encompasses every part of the business, ensuring that every element is customer-focused. Budget silos can mean that organizations are not aligned through their parts, resulting in not being able to meet expectations. For example, if a user calls the invoicing department to report a change of address, they will assume that the change will also be made in the marketing and sales departments. If not done, they could switch to competition. Customer communication solutions that do not make changes through the data flow or do not automate such tasks have the potential to create more problems than they will solve.