How digital businesses are unlocking new sources of competitive advantage
The new digital economy is a multi-million dollar opportunity that transcends almost every industry sectorFrom retailers to healthcare providers; financial institutions to mobile operators; any company that sells goods or provides services is looking to create new digital capabilities that enable them to enhance their customers’ experience, build intimacy, and thereby establish long-term relationships. After all, it’s far less costly to retain an existing customer than it is to win a new one.
To succeed, organisations need to change the nature of the relationships that they have with their customers, in a positive way. That means interacting with individuals in the manner that they prefer, and through the channels of their choice.
Every individual’s expectations are different. Personally, I like to do everything on my mobile phone; I enjoy the convenience of being able to use it to perform routine administrative tasks, such as making bank deposits or online payments. I also like fast service. For example, if I’m in a car accident, I expect to be able to take a picture of the incident on my phone, immediately send it to my insurance company, and be met by an agent at the scene within the hour. Like many ladies, I love shoes – Tory Burtch in particular. I enjoy receiving regular mobile alerts from the company about specials, sales, or the arrival new stock. When I visit their website, I like the fact that I’m provided with a highly personalised, interactive experience.
So engaging with customers through relevant, frequent, and personalised communication – the nature of which is based on the insights gained of their actions, buying behaviours, and preferences – is becoming more important than ever. Businesses that get it right have an opportunity to fundamentally change the nature of their relationships with customers, win their loyalty, and grow their ‘share of wallet’ in an increasingly crowded marketplace.
To make this shift, organisations need to capitalise on technologies and trends such as big data and analytics, social media, mobility, and the Internet of Things. Cloud, and the capability it gives you to provision infrastructure and capacity quickly while only paying for what you use, is a fundamental enabler of the digital customer revolution. Dimension Data is helping its clients to accelerate their ambitions in this area. We recently assisted AME to digitise its hospitals and revolutionise patient care by creating a paperless, filmless healthcare environment. When Fujifilm wanted to give its customers instant and easy access to their photographic memories and special moments, from anywhere and any device, with the least amount of risk, we provided them with the secure cloud platform they need to make it possible.
The sports industry is a great example of a sector that’s tackling the digital transformation challenge head on. In my next post, I’ll share my perspectives on how sporting conglomerates around the world are relooking their customer engagement strategies to make events more accessible to a wider range of fans and spectators, and tap into new geographies and demographic groups.