Digital Transformation – a term that has moved from being a buzzword to a defining strategy for success in our times. Today, embarking on the journey of digital transformation seems to be on the cards for every forward-thinking organization. Digital transformation is about leveraging digital technologies to bring about a profound change in the business and organizational activities which includes processes and competencies to become more efficient, agile, innovative, people-oriented, productive, customer-centric, and consequently profitable.
Which brings us to the conversation about the changing economics of customer interactions. In an environment driven by globalization and digitization, it has become evidently clear that today, we have entered the ‘Age of the Customer
’. Any and every initiative adopted by an organization has to be focused on the customer – to deliver to them exactly what they need and what they want. Clearly, Customer Success is the defining element of all organizational strategies and initiatives, including that of digital transformation.
But what is customer success?
The success of your product or service is directly related to its adoption rate. Therefore, as an organization, it becomes crucial to identify touchpoints that make this happen. A report published by the Institute of Customer Service states that while customers find it easier to buy goods and services today, they are more likely to complain when things don’t match up to their expectations. There are a number of forces at play in the market today – rapid technology adoption, increasing competition, changing customer behaviors, and the growing demand for business transparency are just a few of the usual suspects. Thus, focusing on the variables that drive up customer adoption become critical in surviving the digital economy.
The next big question – who is responsible for customer success?
It’s a given that having a working product is a key component of ensuring customer success. However, all those within the organization interfacing in a direct or indirect manner with the customer such as the customer success teams, the sales, and marketing teams, the product teams, the support teams, channel partners and the like are critical contributors of the customer and their end users.
However, almost without exception, these teams work in silos and do not provide a cohesive customer experience when a customer is actually using a product. This is mainly because organizations embarking on digital transformation are still not focusing on customer enablement. The customer of today demands coherent and proactive means to achieve speed at scale. So while it becomes imperative to have the right teams in place to help them achieve this, it also becomes equally essential to make sure that these teams are working in unison with one another as a singular unit. The customer wants all the information that they need in one place – she does not want to deal with different teams and disconnected apps to address her needs.
It, therefore, becomes essential to ensure that when the customers are using a product, all the information that they need and possibly could
need are displayed at the same time, in an organized manner without overwhelming them. This need can be addressed with the help of in-product enablement where enablement is provided for the entire value-chain.
How can we achieve enablement for the entire value chain?
Customer enablement begins with getting the customer-facing teams such as customer support/success teams, sales & marketing teams and the extended teams of partners and channels ready with the right set of information resources. This includes aligning the pillars of the market landscape, the communication, feedback, knowledge, and education teams in a manner that they can comfortably fit under one umbrella and help the customer appropriately and most importantly, intuitively, when the customer is actually using the product.
This in-product approach puts together everything that is of relevance to the customer and his product journey in one place by simply extending the product itself. It makes the customer journey more contextual, direct, instant, and personalized. Since there are no silos dividing teams, product companies can listen to the mind of the customer and take corrective actions when needed by leveraging tracking analytics. They can use internal and existing assets to quickly curate and disburse relevant and contextual content, educate the customer with personalized content, and deliver immediate service by extending the value of their existing systems in a device agnostic manner. All this can be achieved simply by embedding a widget such as the one offered by Flype
within the existing product and drive 1-1 personalized enablement at scale.
Customer enablement lies at the heart of customer success. Clearly, digital transformation is not just about ‘doing’ digital things. It is more about having the right processes in place and using the right set of technologies that help in delivering a cohesive and seamless product experience. And this can only be achieved when the entire team is on one page about knowing what the customer really needs for achieving success by making the currently fragmented customer experience more cohesive.