Amongst the many things that are stunning about nature is the diversity and the sheer variety it offers. Businesses are products of nature and are no different. The same topic can bring substantially different viewpoints and offer variety of opinions and perspectives.
Last week I had the pleasure of moderating a panel discussion at an event in Bangalore. The width and depth of the panel representation were truly fascinating. From jewelry to hospitals to food to furniture and media, all colors of the rainbow were witnessed. But there was one clear unifier: all of them wanted to offer the best experiences to their customers across everything they did – products, delivery, choice, customized offerings, value and so on. Most of these companies were operating in what is come to be known as Click and Mortar companies, spreading their efforts between digital and non-digital platforms.
Here are some common threads across their ambitions:
- The purposes for which companies are using digital technologies are very varied: from branding to customer acquisition to receiving payments to engagement. Even within the same industry there are substantial variations in the outcomes expected
- Most brands are seeking to standardize their customer experience using technologies to reduce variations which comes because of human interactions
- Brands are trying to increase retention by trying and reducing the number of customers to drop off
- Customization, more specifically regionalization and even more specifically contextualization is big on the charter
- Integration of the digital and non-digital interfaces with the customers is a key challenge even for the born-in-the-internet companies
As we wade through the colors of this rainbow, one can only be excited in the immense possibilities businesses have to delight their customers and the creativity they are using today clearly shows that they understand that.