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Leaning Into Customer Behavior and Expectations On Fast Forward

Depending on your industry, target customer and company situation, (as we outlined in our recent whitepaper) in the past three months there has been 3 to 5 years of acceleration that has occurred. The evolution of remote work, digital channel usage, contactless channel adoption and so on has been rampant.  

Whatever economic and health scenarios play out, not all things will ‘return to normal.‘ The degree of permanent change will vary by industry, geography and company.  There are new moments and new experiences that matter more to your customer than you could have ever imagined.

How are you keeping pace with a world on Fast Forward? How quickly is your business adjusting to changing consumer attitudes and needs?  How can you stay ahead as you evaluate your updated plans for the rest of the year and begin to set sights on 2021?

As a client recently shared with me, “This is not a time to lean back, it’s a time to lean forward.” While some are in defensive mode, others are using this disruption as a time to reassess, reimagine and recalibrate to stay aligned with the customer and fine-tune everything from Brand to Product to Digital Experience and Marketing.  

Not exactly what you had in mind for the summer?  I hear you.  Me too. It is a daunting challenge, but one we’ve seen many clients embrace in recent weeks and months.  Coming out of this flurry of activity, for those ready to lean forward, we’ve developed a framework that may help you focus your efforts and stay ahead.  Think of it as a checklist to quickly help you discover new opportunities, new meaningful moments and ways to create smarter experiences for a world on Fast Forward. 

framework for new opportunities amidst disruption

 

No doubt you’ve been doing some of this already, whether systematically or ad hoc.  Here are the 6 activities that we’ve found to be the most relevant and prevalent when it comes to building resiliency in the face of accelerated disruption. And, as mentioned, each can be done in days and weeks, not months.

Insights – VOC and Sales Force Needs
As we head down an unclear and constantly changing path, staying close to the customer has never been more important.  And access to low cost, high-speed research approaches has never been higher.  Above all, you need to gain insights into the changing needs, behaviors and expectations of your customers, prospects and sales teams.  Looking at customer analytics and behavioral data can also unearth new opportunities.  Utilizing all of this, we can also keep personas and journeys updated to reflect new and emerging realities and keep your team focused where it matters. 

 

Brand – Positioning/Messaging Tune Up
Ensuring that your brand position and messaging is relevant and current with the times has never been more important. Consider if your core value proposition and/or messaging needs some adjustment.  In this new reality, it is critical to have relevant points of distinction, aligning your messaging to the moment and finding new ways to activate brand promises through “StoryDoing”.

 

Marketing – Go to Market Refresh
No matter how prescient your messaging and channel selection may have been, there is a need to optimize it given customer behavior changes.  Think about your channels, offers, cadence and product focus. Consider the renewed importance of email, online advertising, and Engagement Marketing in place of channels that are less desirable and prevalent in a COVID world.

 

Digital Experience – Acceleration Map
How well tuned are your digital experiences to meet the fast-changing needs of your customers?  What are the most impactful opportunities for change?  What do you need to put the gas on?  The time is right to look at your digital ecosystem objectively, align your efforts to needs and realities and create a prioritized hit list from which to execute.  

 

Transformational Technology – Opportunity Assessment
Faster, better, cheaper.  Never has the call to action been more prescient.  Transformational Technologies (TT) – from Robotics to Conversational Commerce to Machine Learning can play a key role in addressing helping you make the call to action a reality.  As you look ahead to 2021, consider what TT investment strategies can generate momentum and quick wins.

 

New Normal Workshops and Roadmaps
Using data from customers, sales and competition, consider structuring virtual workshops – using platforms like Zoom and Miro – to ideate new experiences, priorities and plans…and bring it all together with a roadmap that spells out priorities to implement now and next.

 

Create a roadmap to visualize your short term and mid-term goals

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

There’s a lot to do. For all of us.  New meaningful moments.  New smarter experiences.  New opportunities.

With that in mind, if you need some help adjusting, accelerating, and transforming – quickly, inexpensively, tangibly, and strategically – please contact us for more information about how Primacy can help. 

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Author: Mike Stutman

As SVP of Strategy at Primacy, Mike helps clients envision and plan for new ways to use digital channels to improve their marketing and customer experience efforts.

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Published June 2020

Category Strategy
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