January 20th, 2020 by admin
Online sales surpassed in-store sales for general merchandise in 2019. Venerable McDonald's added kiosks to replace cashiers beginning in 2018. And all of us have experience with the ubiquitous telephone voicemail call tree.
The digital landscape has changed the face of customer service and interaction. It's also changing the way the back-office functions, too. Automated billing, just-in-time inventory, even mobile phones have changed the way we do business.
Here in Phoenix and in Arizona as a whole, the digital transformation of business opens up opportunities for growth and improvement.
Read on to learn more.
What Is Digital Transformation?
Serving customers isn't new, but HOW you serve customers is changing. Just like the telephone revolutionized business communications, new technologies change the way businesses operate. The change affects processes, culture and customer experience expectations.
The digital transformation is no longer just about moving from paper and spreadsheets to computers and the cloud. There are opportunities to re-think how to engage with customers, build loyalty and increase efficiency. Instead of doing the same old things faster, digital transformation is about using new tools in a new way.
There are many opportunities for improvement if you just ask yourself to create a better way to be more efficient. Or maybe the big question is a better way to move data for better decision making. Ask yourself how your business can give a more personalized and superior customer experience.
Every Business Is a Tech Company
Around the world, digital transformation is transforming societies. In Europe, Finland and Sweden lead the wave of change. The integration of digital technology into society is visible daily. Half of all companies in both countries use cloud services. Commerce is nearly cashless, with most transactions conducted with a card or mobile phone.
In the Middle East, Israel is investing more than 275 million dollars to digitize their national health records as part of its bid to develop new drugs. In Asia, Singapore's bid to become a Smart Nation is funded by millions in government grants.
Here at home, Phoenix local government investments in infrastructure mean attracting and retaining businesses like Uber, Yelp and Shutterfly. For mid-size and small businesses, the digital transformation is about integrating technology into all areas of a business.
Opportunities to Engage Customers
Is your business ready to deliver seamless service online and in-person? After all, your customers are always connected. Nearly all American adults carry a mobile phone and close to 3/4 have internet services at home and work.
Embrace the tech that has transformed buying habits. Mobile devices, apps, and predictive text searches allow customers to get what they want at the moment of need. It's changed the way customers expect to be served.
Customers are more informed and have more choices than ever. Often, the first contact a consumer has with your company is a digital experience.
Digital-first really means rethinking your customer interactions. It means building relationships instead of better cold calls. It's proactive, not reactive. At the customer service level, it means adopting communications channels that your customers use. For example, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and more. Websites, reviews, forums, and fan communities are all part of the mix.
In marketing, digital transformation means reducing investments in offline marketing like billboards, radio, and TV. Instead, choose data-driven, highly personalized messages. This means using customer account management, search engine marketing, and directed emails to deliver content.
Sales teams can better approach customers with education and relevant content. Instead of spraying the Greater Phoenix Metro with ads and cold calls, the smarter sales approach is using social media for outreach to share expertise and build relationships.
Initiate Your Digital Transformation
There are three fundamental areas that ensure success in changing your business process and culture.
Targeted Customer Interactions
Customers expect companies to treat them as unique. They want to be recognized by name and their purchase history and preferences catered to. The only way to do this is to collect and use their data.
A CRM to record the history of your customer interactions is necessary. It allows analysis and study of customer-related data. With this information, you can create the highly-targeted content that customers prefer.
Deliver the right message to the right person at the right time.
Seamless Experience Over Any Channel
Always on tech has made customers demand service. Anything they want, at any hour, anywhere in the world is the norm. Customer service responses aren't limited to Monday through Friday, 9:00 - 5:00.
It is entirely possible to work with a customer in-person, over Twitter, online helpdesk, chat and then follow up by email.
Tech is the only way to be accessible and responsive 24/7/365. Wrap all interactions together to create a single digital customer profile.
The Right IT Environment
The right tech to power up digital strategies is basic for business. So why are so many companies dragging their feet?
Hardware, software and the people to run it all are expensive. Add in the complexities of telecommunications (also digital in today’s world) and the risks grow. On top of that, all that data and decision making information comes from cloud-based CRM or enterprise software.
Managed IT services allow a company to utilize expertise to be dynamic and flexible without the expense and worry of server and network management. Even better when cloud services take away the worry and expense of updates and patches.
Change the Way You Do Business
Arizona companies ready to move beyond doing business faster for doing business better should consider their next step. A digital transformation offers ways to engage customers and potential customers.
Deliver a seamless, personalized customer experience regardless of channel, time or location. Transforming your thinking and culture starts with the right tools and the right mindset.
So, here’s how to get started:
- Move on from doing old processes faster. Think about processes that add value.
- Use CRM to record customer interactions and give data to drive customer communications.
- Create the right IT environment to support these efforts.
Ready to discuss your business' digital transformation strategy?
Posted in: Insights