In this recent era of dramatic changes, creating a strategic focus for your business is more important than ever before.
This is because an unfaltering focus on CLV (Customer Lifetime Value) provides the right foundation that companies need to enjoy everlasting success and business growth.
Now, looking at customer acquisition and relationship through the lens of quantitative and analytical science, CLV constitutes of an ultimate virtuous cycle, which is much like the one that helped Jeff Bezos create Amazon into a powerhouse of market innovations that we see today.
Therefore here are a few ways you can optimize CLV in 2019 for also for the years to come:
Get wired for customer journeys, not just transactions
Businesses and brands that provide the best experience to their consumers throughout the customer journey achieve much higher levels of sales, retention and customer satisfaction, than companies that only focus on ameliorating transactional touch-points, as suggested by research conducted by McKinsey & Company.
This implies a brand may be losing customers in spite of its individual teams getting higher customer service ratings.
In the research conducted by McKinsey & Company it was also found that this often happens when customers view their overall experience with a brand unsatisfactory or frustrating and so when and if this happens businesses need to reexamine the entire customer journey, locate the root cause and across different functional areas and eliminate silos to achieve solution to this issue.
Hence if your business is committed to improving customer experience, it is imperative that your company must buy CRM or any other business growth technology and tools that are capable of predicting advanced journey analytics to better perceive customer behaviors and motivations across touch-points over time.
This is because once your business finds better insights and visibility across the entire customer lifecycle (right from marketing to sales and service) it will allow your business to demolish the walls between internal silos and ease the greatest pain points of your customers.
In fact, once you buy CRM the journey analytics capability of the software not only helps to test and identify the best ways to interact with customers at specific points in their journey, but it also help influence the purchaser’s next step to attain targeted business results like an increase in renewal rates or acceptance of new offerings through up-selling and cross-selling activities.
Engage customers through chatbots and messaging apps
According to eMarketer, more than even 1.4 billion consumers use messaging apps like Whatapp, Facebook Messenger and WeChat, and this number is expected to hit more than 2 billion within the next one year and even more in the days to come.
Therefore owing to the increasing popularity of messaging apps in the modern times, chatbots will play a very critical role in boosting customer experience and developing deeper customer relationships in 2019, and so now messaging app providers are allowing businesses to use their apps to interact with customers turning them into new consumer-interaction channels for rapid business growth.
Enabled by advances in machine learning, AI (Artificial Intelligence) and NLP (Natural Language Processing) business growth technology and tools are nowadays engaging in more personalized, relevant and helpful interactions with their customers at scale, creating a new form of “conversational commerce” by which customers can now chat with company reps, find customer support, get personalized recommendations, ask questions, read reviews, and thereafter click to buy without even having the need to leave the messaging app that they prefer to use for resolving their issues.
Now among the many paybacks of the AI-driven app-based conversations is the consumer’s ability to use their preferred platform of choice and so unlike email interactions that can always become disjointed and thereby cause delays, messaging provides a seamlessly continuous thread of conversation between the customers and their brands, which not only makes these interactions more like dialogues but it also facilitates managing a tracking communications from both sides.
Therefore, now with a more natural flow of interactions between the company and its consumers, there are more scopes for cross-selling, seeking feedback and even sharing information and news with people at large in the marketplace for branding and business growth.
Gain tangible results with machine learning and AI
Even though the terms “machine” and “artificial” may apparently seem impersonal and robotic, nevertheless rapidly developing AI-based business growth technology is actually helping brands to deliver a much more personalized customer experience to an even larger customer base than it was not possible in the past.
For example, researches have proved in the recent times that this kind of personalization is leading to more engagement rates compared to traditional inventory browsing in online retail brands by pairing NLU (Natural Language Understanding) with deep learning algorithms to help customers express their requirements naturally through Facebook Messenger-based chatbots, when it is integrated in easy to use CRM software(s).
Apart from this, nowadays top-performing AI-powered chatbots can even recognize when it is the best to transfer the customer-facing interaction to live customer support reps, which makes these transfers seem natural and seamless for the customers.
Although technologies like Bot and AI are still in their early and preliminary phases, however, as bots are learning more from user-generated behaviors, they are also constantly evolving and adapting to create richer experience that predicts better results both for brands and their customers.
Merge sales and customer service mindsets to drive revenue
In the modern hypercompetitive marketplace, businesses can no longer have their sales and customer support teams operate in silos, with single-function mindsets.
This is because nowadays both support and sales teams need to recognize that to the customer, there is no difference between these two teams.
Hence, in the modern time, service and sales professionals need to see their roles as helping customers resolve problems and thereby achieve success, which may mean for sales educating customers on how they might choose the best pricing and products or services for their needs while for support reps it may imply aiding customers to find more information about additional offerings, which can result in more sales and business growth.
However, to adopt a more blended sales and service culture, organizations need to adjust their evaluation metrics and incentive plans for reach role to drive new behavior and provide training to achieve this change empowering both these teams to share information across department lines, with a common mission to improve customer experience and thereby create more sale value, customer lifetime value, retention rate and profitability.
Therefore the common theme in customer experience trends and business (in general) in 2019 is the requirement to eliminate silos, use business growth technology and tools and thereby maximize CLV by delivering an outstanding customer experience that can help in building a long-lasting relationship by creating cross-functional coordination for rapid business growth.