The current reality is that customers are intrinsically fickle, moving to where they perceive they will get the best service for the best dollar.
Customers have been deemed ‘sophisticated’ by corporations; a nice euphemistic way to say that they are more demanding.
They’re looking for more in every way because there are more options and choices. In short they have the power in the marketplace.
Customer loyalty is almost an oxymoron, a once-viable concept in the era of mass production before Sense-and-Respond. The reverse is now true: this is the era of company loyalty to the customer.
Simply delivering goods and services to the specification of a marketing and sales strategy is no longer acceptable. Trying to make the customer fit the sales proposition, only serves to shorten the life expectancy of the business. If you build it, they won’t come.
In the new business world, the deified customer wields true power. The customer is the arbiter between success and failure. But this benefits the business, too, because businesses capable of sensing and responding to customers’ needs are able to make the customer a true and loyal advocate.
The customer becomes a surrogate sales force; and the deliverers of excellent service become surrogate customers within their own organisation.
Organisations that embark on the ‘Journey to Customer Purpose’ acquire the ultimate tools to engender customer loyalty, customer retention, and employee satisfaction.