Rob Sanders, Senior Strategist and Business Analyst here at Americaneagle.com recently had the chance to present on a webinar with Sheryl Kingstone, Research Director at 451 Research, hosted by Progress, an Americaneagle.com partner.
Rob has 15 years’ experience at Americaneagle.com and has cultivated a reputation for successfully launching projects regardless of client or project size. He has worked with clients including International Paper, Dale Carnegie and Associates and multiple National Football League teams.
Sheryl Kingstone’s focus within 451 Research is on improving customer experience across all interaction channels for customer acquisitions and loyalty, and she has more than 20 years’ experience in the industry.
The below blog quotes and paraphrases Sheryl and Rob throughout – thank you to Progress for providing us with this opportunity to discuss the rising importance of digital transformation.
Today, digital customers are demanding new forms of empowerment. 451 Research noted the following stats, suggesting what customers are looking for:
Customer: 60% value the ability to control and personalize their experience.
Technological: 40% prefer to chat with a business through SMS, social media messenger.
Communication Channels: 76% prefer digital channels to communicate with businesses (e.g. from other industries).
Experience: 50% would strongly recommend a company if it had a mobile loyalty programs that offered rewards.
In light of these stats, digital transformation is key to business success.
Digital Transformation: A Four-Pronged Strategy
451 Research looks at digital transformation as a four-pronged strategy.
Image: 451 Research
Sheryl explained that digital experience is a key component to a lot of the transformation initiatives that are out there; it’s the new front door to all businesses. However, this must be underpinned by a strategy, encompassing all the above elements – digital platform, digital operations, digital organization and digital experience.
New Channels of Engagement: Peeling Back the Onion of the 4-Pronged Approach
Sheryl explained that yesterday’s world was about one-way customer interactions; todays is about self-directed, on-demand, two-way engagement anywhere on any device to ensure a positive experience.
Customers want to communicate on their terms, via their preferred channels.
Image: 451 Research
Sheryl pointed out that the overall shift is happening in the mobile world, and we have to look at how to engage in web chat as it relates to mobile experience, self-service, and assisted services, as in SMS.
Sheryl continued to explain that mobile engagement across a customer lifecycle is about being a mobile extension to your brand, to acquire more customers and provide value added services. It’s also about being that constant companion to nurture, using personalization to enhance experience.
As customers demand to interact with businesses through their mobile devices, companies must respond by creating mobile applications or mobile web experiences that reduce the customer friction at the start of the relationship.
Mobile experience should be heavily considered in any web project, as mobile is dominating the web browsing experience across industries today.
Americaneagle.com recently worked on an innovative mobile project with the Green Bay Packers. Rob Sanders took the opportunity to explain their experience with listeners of the webinar.
The Green Bay Packers were very proactive in recognizing their fan base needed a mobile experience. They reached out to Americaneagle.com to create and launch a very feature rich, responsive web experience for mobile and tablet users, via m.packers.com.
The response was phenomenal. Compared to their 2014 season, Green Bay Packers 2015 season saw 10M+ more visits and 15M+ more page views on their new mobile site, proving that seamless, intuitive mobile experience really does make a huge difference.
Digital Experience and Your Platforms
Systems of record (such as CRM and ERP systems) which are essential for managing internal operations, often impede on the ability to create the best customer experience. Today, site owners are looking to integrate these systems with their website platforms so that instead of being a hindrance, they can provide valuable customer information that can be used for personalization.Sanders touched on this topic providing an example – a current client working with Americaneagle.com came to us with all its systems disconnected, providing no central hub for franchise owners to access all the resources they needed to run their stores
The client’s in-house developers are building a custom web service layer in front of their back office server, while Americaneagle.com is using this custom API layer to power the modern, Sitefinity front end site.
A custom, rules-based system will be implemented, providing each different franchise owner with a personalized view of the resources they should have access to, based on the products sold in their individual store. Integrating the system of record and the front end site will provide a clean interface for franchise owners to quickly navigate, freeing up time to concentrate on running their stores.
Dynamic Content & Personas
Personas are a critical component to starting the engagement process in a personalized digital environment. The best way to start with persona creation is to break down your audience into segments, figure out their demographics, their identifiers in terms of what they’re looking for, their pain points with your website, and what might constitute success for their site visit.
Once you have identified your personas and audiences it will drive the requirements of your design. Once implemented, you can test audiences and strategies using multiple methods and measure results. If you’re not successful, figure out why using your data, make small tweaks and re-measure results until you achieve the success you’re looking for.
Americaneagle.com recently worked with a large healthcare provider to help the organization make use of dynamic content.
Americaneagle.com completed in-depth foundational, content, experience marketing, technical and measurement strategies to help accurately develop the site’s personas.
As a result of creating these personas and customer journeys, the client is now able to serve dynamic content per persona, creating a powerful, tailored customer experience for the end user. The user’s overall web experience is more personalized now than ever before, allowing users to receive the information they are looking for within seconds.
Why Should Adapting to the Digital Revolution be Important to Me?
Digital transformation, personalization, dynamic content and other techniques should be important to all website owners, because adapting and developing your website to provide a better customer experience drives results.
- Expect revenue improvement with dynamic experiences.
- Expect cost reduction using intelligent automation.
- Extinction: if you don’t do it, your competitor will.
Key Takeaways for the Digital Revolution
- The essence of putting digital at work is to ensure that data and insight are embedded into an intelligent process.
- The end goal is for businesses to phase out analog and paper-based processes, which are error-prone and consume manual effort.
- Access to information must be more responsive and immediate in the age of the customer.
- As a result, businesses must invest in new technologies and processes to enhance customer experience.