If you’ve been following this blog series, you know that everything companies need to do to succeed in the future is centered on the customer. In today’s information-rich, socially-connected world, the customer isn’t just king: the customer is everything.
So when companies don’t anticipate where their customers are going and how to meet them there, their customers are more likely to leave.
With customer buying patterns changing at an increasing pace, few companies are proactively adapting to or anticipating the changes. So they’re left in the dust with an inventory full of yesterday’s solutions.
Why Are Companies Lagging in Their Response to the Customer?
The short answer is that they don’t have a clear view of the customer. For the long answer, we’ll start with an example.
Imagine your brand is bleeding market share and sales can’t get it back. Part of the problem is that their customers know more about your brand’s solutions than sales knows about its customers; the main problem is that they’re disconnected from their customers’ new way of doing business.
Marketing isn’t doing any better. They have sufficient data from their intelligence efforts, but there are holes that could be filled in by sales and customer service. They’re not though, so their lead generation isn’t what it should be. Sales then loses opportunities.
What about customer service? More often than not, they can’t address their customers’ true problems because they increasingly don’t understand where their customer is coming from. Therefore, their customers aren’t receiving the level of service provided by competitors who better understand their needs. Without the information they need to do the same, customer service is increasingly working at a disadvantage.
In other words, none of these three critical, customer-facing departments has the view they need to meet their customers where they’re at today much less where they’ll be tomorrow.
They Need the Tools to Let Them See
All of these problems come from perspective. We’ve spoken at length about having one view of the customer and how to get there. For our example company, like so many, getting one view of the customer means getting ahead. Obviously you have to share data. Obviously you have to be able to collect insights about the customer you’re engaging before, during and after the engagement.
Doing this comes down to process and tools.
Microsoft Dynamics provides the foundation for building that single view you need. It pulls in data from across the business and from social media. It simplifies the process of reaching out across departmental barriers and ultimately dismantling them. It helps users make sense of information moving through the system using process improvements, highly visible metrics, and powerful data analysis tools.
"You're better able to anticipate what's going to happen in the future for customers,” says social selling strategist Barbara Giamanco. “With more people working with you on learning to understand your customer's business, you've got more perspective on that; in addition to having, as InsideView CMO Tracy Eiler says, a common platform across sales, marketing and customer service."
The end result? Sales, marketing and customer service have the view they need to truly understand the customer, where they’re coming from, and where they’re going. It’s like having a crystal ball that shows the customers’ future needs. With that kind of perspective, your company is in a much better position to spot trends, anticipate what’s next and sell more.
Schedule a one-on-one demo with a Microsoft Dynamics Solutions pro now to discuss how you can use Microsoft Dynamics to bring these capabilities to your organization.
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