As we see it, one of the core tenets of customer-centricity is that a company’s core business processes are designed to deliver different products and services to different types of customers vs creating a “one-size fits all” approach for an average or typical customer. Also, customer-centric companies optimize their strategies and operational decisions to focus on those customers who differentially are more valuable than all other customers.
However, transforming a company to adopt these customers-centric ways of working is not something that happens overnight. Those who are successful pick one area to get started. The hard part is determining where to start.
Many attempt the traditional impact-versus-effort approach, yet struggle to find something that is compelling and practical enough as a starting point. An alternate approach is to identify those initial opportunities that have the highest likelihood of success, building organizational buy-in and the momentum for change. Using this approach, three key questions to zero in on include:
- “Where can we most quickly drive value?”
- “What areas are not being addressed at all?”
- “Where do I already have a willing partner?”
For example, let’s imagine the story of a typical multi-channel retailer. One of their aspirations is to reimagine their entire customer communication and promotional strategy, shifting from general company-wide discounts and promotions to a “segment of one” communication strategy with personalized offers beyond the traditional discount lever. While this certainly is a bold and compelling end state, bringing this vision to life requires significant investment in terms of systems/analytics as well as significant re-engineering of existing processes.