B2B, B2C, B2B2C, etc. Businesses, nowadays, are trying to create solid and sustainable relationships by actively engaging mobile consumers. They are achieving this by offering interactive tools and services which lead to better results in the digital era. The internet and the dominance of mobile have reshaped the landscape and offered customers new opportunities to interact with businesses, giving them back ownership of the relationship.
A shop is not (only) a physical space anymore
Businesses have to evolve
From a business point of view, the reality is companies no longer drive company and brand messaging – customers do.
Most businesses are missing many opportunities to engage customers. Across social networks and traditional selling channels – email, telephone and storefronts – companies miss or mishandle up to 80% of customer engagement opportunities. A missed opportunity means lost revenue and also unhappy customers.
The only way for companies to reverse this trend is to become customer-obsessed from the top down. Business processes should become flexible and oriented around the customer while using data to build relationships with customers and solve their problems.
Online tools versus face-to-face interactions
The change started with the expansion of the Internet. With the rise of email and websites, a new way was created for customers to interact with businesses and take ownership of the relationship.
Online banking for instance has given back control to customers over an institution usually seen as slow, complex and extremely protective of its core business.
Yet, the banking industry is moving towards a new digital era where customers can now manage their account from their smartphone; make payments, withdraw money, etc… with just one tool, their mobile.
We can now interact with our bank on a daily basis without even seeing our banker for years.
The importance of social media
In the era of the always-on customer, social media is a primary channel for customer engagement.
As customers, we are more informed and have more choice than ever before, so if our expectations are not met, we will move on quickly. An engaged customer however, will reward consistently strong service by spending more and becoming an influential brand advocate on social channels.
That is where the two worlds meet. Customers want service on social media and businesses want advocates.
More than 70% of customers will spend more with a company because of its history of good service. That is where the real upside potential is for companies. It is also why customer engagement is a primary driver of profitable growth.
The mobile future
The future for both customers and businesses seems to be mobile. With the latter overtaking computer-based interactions and becoming the new playground for startups and larger operators alike (looking at Apple and Google changes).
“Mobile is the future of everything”
Users, customers are becoming kings again with the ability to act and interact in real-time through mobile. This is where businesses need to focus on delivering and ensuring offering the right tools, paths and options for customers to interact with them.
From daily relationships (mobile banking for example) to quality reviews (TripAdvisor, Yelp, …), personalised service (Apple store app,…) or even the ability for individuals to take back ownership of their data (SafeMate) mobile is transforming the lives of customers and businesses.
Next? What do YOU want or need?