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Ashish Kapoor Author's Perspective
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3 Minute read

Realize Business Value with CX led Martech

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How to implement a CX-Led Martech Strategy to Realize Business Value

According to a report, 70% of digital transformation failed to meet customer expectations last year, and it was estimated that around $900 billion went to waste.

There’s one takeaway in this, which is that we have moved from—marketing to customers, to - being customer-centric, to-a delivering customer experience (CX).

It is no longer enough to simply sell to the customers, or consider them after the organization has finalized their plans. Today, marketing begins with the customer’s journey and continues to be with them throughout each step that they take, whether it is online or offline.

When we talk about digital transformation, it is not just about storing everything in the cloud and going paperless. With the evolution of digital platforms, it is about making relevant changes to the way we do everything for the customers.

This is what CX is all about. Organizations harness this technology to solve problems by developing innovative solutions. This technology is a means to enhancing a customer’s shopping journey at every step.

Let’s discuss this in detail:

Making Sense Of Customer Experience

As we know, CX can mean different things to different people. So now it brings us to an important question - how do we make sense of CX when everything seems to be a part of it? The solution is to look at CX in a way that can help us create value.

Just like Michael E. Porter’s value chain framework mentioned in the 1985 book “Competitive Advantage: Creating and Sustaining Superior Performance”), the customer experience value chain describes the activities that companies undertake to create value (or margin) by delivering a better CX.

We all know humans are complex, which is why behaviors and preferences vary. We live in a world where we must keep pace with a constantly changing marketplace, with today’s technology being displaced by the innovations of tomorrow. Noise makes decision-making a real struggle.

Let’s look back for a moment and define the problem statement:

  • Experience demands are growing
  • Disparate ever-growing stack, but several key elements are missing
  • Silos across channels and Silos of data
  • Time to value to deliver real-time personalized experiences to customers
  • Skill challenges in the marketing & IT
  • Lack of alignment between marketing and IT
  • Missing marketing operations processes

MarTech is evolving rapidly. The number of companies offering marketing solutions in the Marketing Technology Landscape Supergraphic went up from approximately 150 in 2011 to 7,040 in 2019.

‘One size fits all’ and ‘best practice’ are no longer relevant today, especially with the market evolving so fast. We need new approaches to how we train and align our people, how we form teams, how we engage with our customers, how we gather feedback and make decisions.

The CX-Led MarTech Strategy

To begin with, one needs a collaborative and cohesive view of the customer experience across the organization. Without collaboration and trying to provide a holistic experience, it is very easy for teams to fall back into their individual silo, which can complicate things.

Almost in every case, the customer experience starts with marketing. MarTech provides the toolsets to manage segmentation, personalization, and other aspects key to the start of great customer experience. It also provides the most comprehensive features and tools for automated content and communication with all prospects and customers.

The key idea is to integrate the different tools across an organization that makes it possible for data sharing across teams, which provides continuity and holistic experience to the customer.

In order to move from a strategy on paper to personalized interactions that turn prospects into customers, one needs to map the customer experience to the solutions’ fields, values. Several details need to be tracked to achieve the dream of unified customer experience.

Customer Experience Journey Maps & Fundamental Components

Today, brands are quickly realizing that to drive the most relevant customer experience, the most valuable data the brand can gather comes from the customer themselves. Yes, according to a recent study for Forrester Research, commissioned by FocusVision, consumers say that how a brand makes them feel is 1.5 times more important in their buying decision than any other factor. This is where microdata needs to be considered. This microdata is personified in the insights necessary to understand what your customer thinks and feels.

We call this feeling “Micro-Experience”. A Micro-Experience is a vertical map of events and actions happening across customer, experience, people, process, technology and data where customers and experience are outside of your firewall and not in your control, and others are inside your firewall and complete control.

"You've got to start with Customer Experience & work back towards the technology, not the other way around." - Steve Jobs

A customer journey map is an essential tool for companies who want to address the persistent cross-channel CX challenges that hinder unique and frictionless user experience. Without a customer journey map, you’re unlikely to be able to provide a consistently positive experience at each interaction point as depicted in below customer engagement funnel by SmarBear, across all components and channels.

Designing a CX-Led MarTech Strategy with effectiveness

One can achieve a 100% success rate by applying the approach below in the first attempt.

  • Outside-In
    • Seek to understand industry dynamics and how they influence you.
    • Understand how business objectives are impacted by gaps and opportunities.
  • Focus on improving CX and Drive revenue
    • Focus on the needs of clients, and create experiences supported by technology to improve CX.
    • Deep focus on demand gen and revenue.
  • SVC and Data Insights
    • Create an SVC and provide marketing insights to drive business outcomes
  • Improve marketer’s experience to Optimize CX
    • To create great customer experiences, marketers need to be enabled with market-leading CX technology.
  • Integrated digital technology
    • Remove silos and integrate a single ecosystem that drives seamless experiences across all client touch-points.
    • Utilized cloud to drive business outcomes.
  • A roadmap that focuses on business value
    • Remove silos and integrate a single ecosystem that drives seamless experiences across all client touch-points.
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Customer Experience (CX) Tech Strategy to Drive Business KPIs

The bottom line

All key stakeholders i.e., executive sponsor, steering committee, project owner and teams should be aligned, on both the business and IT side, for their Customer Experience vision. Both sides should cherry-pick the technology solutions together, keeping the end goal in their mind. IT should focus on the feasibility and accessibility parameters and business should drive productivity and ROI for the organization. Customers will also play a vital role. They are the end-users and their experience defines the success of these technology enablers. Business teams should act as a medium between the IT and the customers to facilitate the best results.

Ashish Kapoor Director Technology Solutions


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