The Ten-Year Challenge: Transforming Customer Communication

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The ten-year challenge. A trend that launched a thousand social media posts and carried us into the new decade with style…kind of. Needless to say, in those first moments of 2020 our cup ranneth over with side-by-side comparison shots of the world’s most famous celebrity metamorphoses.

But with the stream of decade-old celebrity snapshots slowing to a trickle, what better time to focus on a transformation the likes of which Hollywood starlets can only hope to aspire? The evolution of the customer communication model. Go back one, even two years and the entire landscape of customer communication is altered. But ten years? Now that’s a transformation worthy of some press.

1. The Message

The customer communication strategy of yesteryear relied on sweeping, generic messages sent to the masses. The goal? Win over as many customers as possible by making the message applicable to everyone. The result? Zero differentiation, and a customer-base left feeling like a number in an excel sheet.

The customer communication revolution begins and ends with the data (more on that later). Once we were able to understand each customer on an individual level, we could personalize the message to their specific needs. Goodbye, needlessly mundane campaigns. Hello, targeted messaging opening the door to authentic, two-way communication.

2. The Fifth G

What’s 5G got to do, go to do with it? Well, a lot. The world is shrinking. Customers now have access to the entire world via one highly-priced rectangle. And if a brand isn’t keeping up, they are getting left behind.

What was once an easily understandable, single source of communication from brand to customer, now resembles a complex maze of channels and capabilities. The key to winning it all? Understanding where and when to communicate with your customer. Going beyond the message to personalize the process as well.

3. The Data

The recipe for a perfectly personalized message: a cup of data, mixed with a dash of data, added to a layer of data.

While businesses have had access to customer data for as long as businesses have been businesses, the last ten years have seen a significant shift in the quantity and quality. What was once one or two key statistics, has evolved into hundreds of data points creating a 360 degree of your customer at every point in their journey. The challenge today? Finding the right data to create the right message in the context of your campaign.

4. The Experience

Remember when businesses competed solely on the products they offered? Suffice it to say, such practices have gone the way of the mullet hairstyle.

Today, it’s all about the experience. Does each message flow into the next? How are you holistically unifying your communications to create a cohesive journey for each customer? Is there friction at any point in said journey? (Hint, there shouldn’t be.) The experience you create for each customer is the differentiating factor between you and your competitors. Make sure it’s a good one.

5. The Customer

Customer have come a long way since the early aughts. The rise in digitization leading to an increase in product availability, which in turn led to higher expectations on the customers’ part. Follow all of that? What it boils down to is this: The power has shifted from the companies to the customers. Welcome to the age of the customer-centric communication model.

We have solidly entered the new year (and the new decade), leaving behind the haggard, obsolete communications strategies of the past. As they say, new year, new me. Are you ready?