Earlier this year, Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business released its latest iteration of its CMO Survey. They've been doing it twice a year since 2008. Among the many findings on a wide array of topics was the response to the question to CMOs to identify in their minds what they think will be most top of minds for consumers in 2015. Their choices were:
- Superior Product Quality
- Excellent Service
- Low Price
- Trusting Relationship
- Superior Innovation
Before I get to the findings, what do you think the most CMOs selected as being #1 for consumers in 2015? Product quality? Low price? Trust? How 'about none of the above. That's right kids the #1 thing CMOs think will be customers' top priority in 2015 is service – excellent service to be precise. Of course the word "excellent" is implied or at least it should be for why would anyone want anything but excellent service?
But I digress.
What It Means
Well quite simply it means that CMOs are realizing that the customer experience (CX), which includes service of course, is essentially vital for any brand to have any kind of hope of surviving the next X number of years. Yes that is incredibly simplistic but so what? Don't over complicate things, kids. Consumers want the most optimal CX from every brand, every time across every channel and device. Period.
Look at the undeniable parallel between price and service from 2009 to 2015? As the attention to price has decreased as the economy has recovered, the focus on service as increased. Naturally price will always play some role – that's a given. But it appears, as least in the eyes of CMOs that price is not the driving force it once was and now CX is front and center. And that's a good thing – a very good thing.
Another interesting finding lies in the increase on innovation which to mean is a sign of the times. Again not over complicating things here but in this tech crazed and savvy world we live in, the onus to be innovative is clear and present. Of course just how such innovation manifests itself depends on the brand itself.
Something as basic as the creation of a mobile app may suffice consumers for one brand whereas another brand may need to be significantly more innovative to appease the masses.
All of which brings us to the CMO technology conundrum and how to solve it…
Earlier this year, in partnership with The CMO Club, we released The CMO Solution Guide to Leveraging New Technology and Marketing Platforms. The guide contains results of a survey of over 100 marketing leaders plus the five key solutions we identified to help CMOs and marketing leaders tackle the challenge of providing a seamless customer experience across all marketing channels via the use of technology – the right technology that is.
Here's an excerpt: "Given the vast array of technology, data points, channels, and tactics available, new technology and marketing automation has stepped in to help CMOs bring all their activities together and support the delivery of the ultimate customer experience. But has it really helped so far? Or has it simply created another overwhelming challenge for the CMO who now must become a technology expert to apply it efficiently?"
Click here to download The CMO Solution Guide to Leveraging New Technology and Marketing Platforms today.
Image source: CMO Survey from Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business