Customer Experience Innovation: Why getting it right can mean big profits!

Ecommerce-Customer-ExperienceHow can you remain competitive in a fast changing, global economy?  ANSWER:  Innovate the customer experience!

Walt Disney pioneered customer experience marketing principles to build his empire.  This same strategy is now being implemented across industries and geographies to go beyond product innovation.  Building a strategy around customer experience will create market differentiation and brand loyalty.

Take a look below to understand how this new definition of innovation will impact your business.  Companies such as CVS, Qualcomm, Amazon, etc are making big investments in customer innovation to change how customers view their brands.

Examples of of how customer innovation works:

     Qualcomm Life has created a new wireless technology platform at the point of care.  They are helping patients, providers and payers by creating an industry standard for connectivity around all customer touch points.  This investment will have a big impact on how patients, doctors, insurance companies, and medical device manufacturers interact.  (By 2020, at least 160 million Americans will be monitored and treated remotely for at least one chronic condition).  This initiative means greater access to care, decreased administrative costs and a decrease in hospital expenses for senior care.

•     Non-profit giant Scripps Healthcare has introduced it’s Online Patient Platfom – Whether it’s how patients find a doctor, research a medical condition, pay hospital bills, schedule an appointment, or find cancer survivor testimonials, Scripps provides it all to the patient instantaneously from the ease of any mobile device.

•     The pharmacy giant CVS has recently stopped selling cigarettes because it is a product that is not consistent with their healthcare/wellness brand.  CVS wants to grow by promoting healthy habits and administering managed pharmacy benefit programs instead of selling something which is known to cause medical issues.

•     Amazon introduced a new mobile app called  Flow feature which epitomizes just how aggressively the retail giant is pressing its technological advantage to win the market for everyday merchandise. It is another step towards changing the way customers shop.

The introduction of new technologies and an increase in global demand has provided rapid growth to these top 6 industries:

          1. Medical device / biotech
          2. Software / cloud based data storage and sales tracking
          3. Home healthcare services
          4. Voice over IP/other internet players
          5. Alternative energy providers
          6. Video gaming (Ref: Squidoo)

Traditional marketing and sales strategies have relied on product innovation as a way to increase revenues, build brand loyalty and gain market share.  The old adage “the customer is always right” speaks directly to what marketing should be about which is customer experience.  Give customers what they want.  New product innovation is just one aspect.  True innovators know that they have to understand the customer habitat and how their customers interact with the brand/ company.  What does your brand say to your customer?

In the past, the most successful businesses have thrived on product innovation as the natural strategy to increase revenues.  Although often incremental, new product innovations can generate temporary growth but may limit long term gains.

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In today’s global economy, competitors quickly match the latest features (for example how much sharper or brighter can you make a TV screen?).  This level of rapid product innovation makes it difficult to realize the returns on the product itself and creates a market that lacks brand loyalty.  Global competition and technological diffusion mean that competitors quickly catch up with most improvements, while the transparency of digital and social media also prompts consumers to quickly switch allegiance with each new alluring offer.  A very real opportunity for growth lies in the understanding of what the customer experience is, and how to measure current experiences created by our companies on behalf of our customers.  Once a customer experience innovation strategy is established, it is important to keep ideas flowing through constant experience reinvention and appropriate governance.  Designing a superior experience, accessing the needs of the customer and exploring new ideas to exceed customer expectations will lead to market differentiation and measurable growth.

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