We all have our own ‘Too Difficult Pile’ – where you throw the things that feel like they are too big, too difficult and too scary to do right now. These may well be things you want to do, but it feels easier to procrastinate getting started than trying to tackle them and no doubt you have plenty of good excuses for not getting started. The longer you put them off, the more difficult they will seem. “If you want to make an easy job seem mighty hard, just keep putting off doing it.” (Olin Miller)

EXCUSES, EXCUSES, EXCUSES

We’ve heard them all before. These are the most common excuses we hear from people choosing to put customer engagement on their ‘too difficult pile’:

“A SINGLE CUSTOMER VIEW IS A HARD NUT TO CRACK”

Customers today have a plethora of ways in which to interact with your brand. And because of this, you are likely to have multiple data records in lots of places for each and every customer. So it’s virtually impossible to get that connected, single customer view, right?

Well, it used to be. The fact is technology has evolved, so it is now possible to bring your customer data and records together into a single customer view which enables a connected, relevant, personalised experience that your customers will go nuts over. And your colleagues will go nuts over being empowered with customer insight shared across your entire business.

“TRUE CUSTOMER ENGAGEMENT IS TOO COMPLICATED”

Does this sound familiar? “I don’t know where to start. I’d need to get people from other departments involved. I’d need IT to help integrate all our systems. We don’t have the budget, time or in-house skills.”

No ifs. No buts. It’s really not difficult, time consuming or even that complicated. You can get started with customer engagement quickly and easily, with very little fuss, without the need for coding or ‘techy’ know-how. You can also do it in a way which compliments, connects and scales with the technical systems you already have in place, breaks down your businesses communication silos and works across all the channels and touchpoints your customers interact with your brand, be it online, on a mobile app, in person or at the call centre. What are you waiting for? “You may delay, but time will not.” (Benjamin Franklin). You may delay, but your customers will not delay in leaving you for someone who is building better relationships with them.

“NO ONE PERSON HOLDS THE CUSTOMER REIGNS”

In the age of the customer, it goes without saying that there are countless stakeholders spanning marketing, sales, service and e-commerce divisions all of whom hold a direct relationship with the customer and have a say in their journey. Any attempt therefore to create an ‘ultimate customer champion’ is tricky as everyone needs to be involved. So, where do you start?

The blunt truth of the matter is, every single person in your business owns the customer relationship in one form or another. So it doesn’t matter who starts but someone must become the customer champion, lead the other stakeholders forward and stop passing the customer reigns around like a hot potato. Everyone will follow, we promise. Now’s the time to stop worrying and start doing…after all, we all know that actions speaks far louder than words. It’s time to get your Customer Engagement show on the road. “In delay there lies no plenty.” (William Shakespeare).

“THERE ARE MORE IMPORTANT PRIORITIES”

You might say that there are other things you need to sort out first – your website, CRM, CMS… There’s always a backlog. The list goes on and on. It’s not a ‘nice to have’, it’s the top priority for the long-term future health of your business. Put it off now and you’re only delaying the inevitable – you’ll have to understand and meet your customer’s expectations one day, hopefully before it’s too late! “Procrastination is opportunity’s assassin.” (Victor Kiam).

Instead of re-building your website and CRM processes in the hope of meeting your customer’s expectations. Why not listen to them first and then build the relevant infrastructure and experiences around them? You might surprise yourselves, with these extra insights you may change the direction of all those other projects for the better.

“JOINING UP OUR SILOS IS A PIPE DREAM”

Hindsight is a wonderful thing. Over the years, businesses have done a sterling job, investing and implementing technologies such as CRM, analytics platforms, campaign management, social listening tools and the list goes on… designed to help manage the customer.

Here lies the issue, unfortunately no one had the forethought to design these systems to effortlessly speak to each other, thus creating an entirely channelled and fragmented view of the customer, contained within each system. So yes, joining up these tech silos does sound fanciful… but there is a way.

Stop your day dreaming. Dreams can come true. It is now possible to have a flexible layer which easily integrates with your current systems, processes and data records and comes with pre-built CRM integrations and API’s designed to quickly and easily join up all your organisational silos. It really is as simple as that.

You don’t need to join everything up at once, it’s unlikely that you’ll ever be 100% ready to. In truth, you can easily make big strides by starting small, joining up your web channels to your CRM, immediately helping you understand your customers a whole lot better. So pipe down with all your excuses.

“OUR BUSINESS STRUGGLES TO PUT THE CUSTOMER FIRST”

Surprisingly, this is not uncommon. Many organisations are so wrapped up in their own agenda that they often overlook a simple truth: (happy) customers are the lifeblood to success. A customer-first company is a company that will last the distance.

With your competitors vying for a piece of the pie, a strong customer-first culture is essential in achieving long-term relationships, helping your business keep its finger on the customer pulse. You need to make sure you pull your customers into focus and drive fast results to demonstrate the value of being customer-focused. When the value of true Customer Engagement is seen, other company stakeholders will open their eyes to its potential and take inspiration, from which point a customer culture will flourish, as will the business.

“WE DON’T HAVE THE TECHNICAL EXPERTISE TO GET STARTED”

The thought of using a Customer Engagement solution may sound daunting if you don’t have IT, data, digital and customer journey knowledge at your team’s disposal. You probably think you need people who can code.

It doesn’t have to be that way. Technology exists which has been built for the end user, so for you and Mrs Cooper across from you! You don’t need to be a code loving IT geek with two engineering masters from MIT.

“WE’RE ALREADY DOING A GREAT JOB”

So, you think your current tools paint a pretty clear picture of your customers and you understand all there is to understand about them. You’ve got tools for online analytics and personalisation, you’ve got a CRM system and some social listening tools, so why on earth would you need another system on top?

Well you’ve made a good start but there’s still a gap. The tools you have were not designed to provide a unified, omni-channel customer view across all touchpoints or personalise every interaction throughout your customers’ journey with you (online, on mobile apps, offline, or a call-centre), so you’re missing a trick.

It’s time to pull your head out of the sand, clear the grit from your eyes and ears.

It’s now possible to have journey analytics capability which places the customer at the very heart of what it’s listening to. You can understand the context of each and every customer interaction in a way that’s shared and standardised across the different technologies and silos, so the entire journey can be understood by the entire organisation. There’s also no need to replace your existing systems, instead you can just have an insight layer on top that recognises customer intent, desire and need. And then you can use these insights to deliver relevant and personalised experiences to your customers in real-time. We call it an engagement hub.

STOP IT! NO MORE EXCUSES.

The fact is, truly understanding your customers is easier than you’d think. The truth is, building meaningful relationships with your customers should never be on your too difficult pile. When it comes to getting started with true customer engagement do not put off to tomorrow what you can do today. Procrastination is the thief of customers and value to your business. It’s time to take customer engagement off your too difficult pile.

Don’t delay. Get started with customer engagement today, right now, the easy way, without the drama. Download your practical guide on how to get started without all the fuss.

 

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