Winning with Super-powered, Connected Customers – Outpace Competition and Thrive in the New World

The new world is ruled by super-powered, connected customers who expect a connected experience.

As an 18-year brand marketer and practitioner, I'm steeped in the Customer POV. Over the years, I've learned a simple truth: Happy Customers = Increased Revenue. And while that sounds like a no-brainer, how many of us are truly planted in our Customers' shoes and align our go-to-market strategy to that simple truth? Sure, we all have business goals and objectives to deliver, but when we're too focused on our own objectives, we tend to lose sight of the Customers' holistic experience with our brand across the vast and often-disparate eco-system of touch points. The new world is ruled by super-powered, connected customers who expect a connected experience. Brands who effectively meet this new challenge will thrive, while those who hesitate to transform and iterate their go-to-market strategies will inevitably meet their demise.

Who is the super-powered, connected customer?

Gartner Group statistics report that 80% your company's future revenue will come from just 20% of your existing customer base. That 20% are your connected customers. They're hyper-engaged, highly influential and they're your very best customers. These connected customers transcend our traditional customer segmentation – view them through a traditional lens and you'll miss every time. They're connected, social, always on and in full control -- they can make and break our brands with a few taps of their thumbs delivering thousands of impressions about our brands and their experiences to a vast networks of friends, family and business associates. This new super-powered, connected customer is arguably the most powerful resource on our marketing team, a Customer Marketing Officer, our new CMO.

How to Win

The traditional sales funnel which represents a linear path to purchase, is dead -- RIP. Connected customers are on a continuous, non-linear path to purchase, with no two paths the same, and we need to be readied to answer to their needs when and where they choose. Our multi-channel mindset now must shift to an OmniChannel experience catering to the connected customer:

  • Move from a mass market approach to 1:1 – provide a personalized and relevant, connected experience
  • The store becomes "My Store" for each customer
  • Our multi-channel delivery iterates and connects to provide a seamless brand experience across all touch points, both traditional and digital – that's the essence of OmniChannel
  • Shift mindset from a linear path to purchase to a continuous, non-linear path – meet your customers when and where they choose
  • Understand when customers need help and when they're ready to purchase – leverage touch points to deliver accordingly – think many points-of-sale versus a singular POS
  • Choose and invest wisely in technology that moves at the pace of your connected customers – An integrated digital marketing and e-commerce platform that will iterate and scale with your customers' demands

We'll thrive in the new world by moving at the pace of our connected customer – act now and iterate over time. If you think you need to take time out to think about it, someone is already eating your lunch. Live, breathe, eat and crap our Customer POV:

  • Live, breathe, eat your customers' POV: Firmly plant yourself in your customers' shoes and align your go-to-market strategy accordingly. Yes, I said crap your customers' POV:
  • Adopt an iterative and agile approach to enable continuous learning and optimization – it's only when you've come full circle and act upon what you've learned that you're fully realizing ROI.

And last, but certainly not least – remember, this is FUN! Be calm. Carry on.