UK business chiefs have ranked customer experience above even sales and revenue as the key focus in 2017 as they aim to put the customer at the heart of their strategies, although most admit they are still struggling to gain the insights to make this possible.
According to a new report, “Success in The Experience Era: Connecting Customer and C-suite,” every single respondent said that customer engagement was their priority; in contrast to just 58% cited sales and revenue as their primary concern.
Commissioned by Calabrio, the study surveyed 844 senior business decision makers from across the globe, including more than 350 C-level execs, on their business priorities and views on customer experience.
The importance of delivering exceptional customer experiences is now more apparent than ever, the study shows, with more than half (52%) of senior leadership globally viewing customer experience as the most important way of differentiating their brand.
However, the study uncovers that companies and their C-suites have hurdles to clear before they can fully understand and engage customers. For example, nearly half (47%) of CMOs feel that they do not have the right tools deployed in order to understand their customers’ greatest challenges.
And, at the heart of the problem is a lack of clear customer ownership post-sale – only 35% of CMOs believe that using customer data insights is their responsibility, while a mere 29% of CCOs claimed ownership. Looking further across the C-suite, only 37% of chief executive officers stake a claim on improving customer experiences.
Calabrio presdient and chief executive Tom Goodmanson said: “It is clear that the customer is paramount to success. But the challenge comes in understanding how customers interact with businesses, particularly when it comes to the contact centre. The challenge is two-fold: first to ensure businesses are gathering accurate customer insights as a rich source of business intelligence, and secondly to understand how this data can be used to inform wider business improvement and customer engagement strategies.”
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