I’ve recently spent a lot of time considering how digital disruption is affecting companies and their relationship with customers. It’s a complex problem because it involves the new technologies we are all seeing, such as video support, virtual agents, and artificial intelligence, but also the processes are changing. New analytic processes are needed to understand how customer behaviors are expectations are changing.
But although we all know that improving the customer experience (CX) is essential and digital disruption is changing how we actually make this happen, I saw some research recently that drove home exactly how important this really is.
The research from the Accenture Institute for High Performance makes two very stark predictions:
- Rapid and disruptive change is coming to your business, regardless of the industry in which you operate
- 75% of today’s leading brands will be gone inside a decade.
You read that right. Three-quarters of the brands we know and love today will be gone inside a decade if this research is correct. The Chief Strategy Officers surveyed in the research do appear nervous about the future. 93% of them said that they are expecting a dramatic change in the way their business operates because of digital disruption yet only 20% of them said that they feel ready for the change that is ahead.
The research offers several pointers on what company executives can do to be more prepared for change, but I think this is the most prescient:
“Do not face disruption alone. Deepen and broaden partnerships with customers, providers, and a diverse array of companies in and beyond your core industry.”
This acknowledges that individual companies today cannot answer all the needs of their customers. They rely on a value chain that includes their suppliers and customers. Any company that is going to be flexible enough for a digitally disrupted business environment will not only be close to their customers, but close to the companies they also rely on.
This advice emphasizes the need to take CX seriously – not just as a way to boost revenue, but as a way of staying on top of what your customers want and expect. Once you lose this connection then it would almost certainly be a struggle to return to relevance.
Please let me know what you think about these research findings by commenting here or you can get in touch via LinkedIn.
Photo by Tom Parnell licensed under Creative Commons.