By Vaughan Patterson, Head of Commercial and Industrial Print at Ricoh SA
Considering how the pandemic has changed the business world, it has become clear that companies with stronger customer experience (CX) focus and capabilities are likely to grow more than their competitors and be more likely to effectively adapt to future market changes.
Graphic arts professionals are among those who will help organisations enhance their CX capabilities because they help to support brands as they adopt customer-first approaches. Working closely with marketing, they can create relevant and targeted materials based on data that is accurate, relevant and contextualised to deliver meaningful campaigns that engage audiences.
People more than data
All of this is part of the seismic change that has swept through the business world because of various lockdowns. 92% of senior executives (Adobe Digital Trends Report, 13 000 business leaders) agree that it massively emphasised digital transformation. A McKinsey Global Survey (899 senior executives, July 2020) found that companies accelerated supply chain and customer interaction digitalisation by three to four years.
Digital transformation efforts ramped up suddenly, but they will not disappear as lockdowns ease. They are here to stay because that’s how people engage with companies now. And brands are recognising that customers are people, not just raw data, which emphasises the importance of interpreting the analytics around digital commerce and engagements, understanding the people behind the data and using it to connect with them in meaningful ways. The greatest portion of the opportunity is most definitely in the mobile arena.
Slick experience required
With everyone digitalising and transforming the way they sell their products and services to people, the bar has been raised a lot. Companies have learned from others how to do it better. People everywhere have also had many times more interactions with them by which to measure their performance. In the past you could still get away with customer experiences that could stand some improvement. Online volumes were lower and people were accustomed to walking in to stores. All of that is gone now. It is clear that companies who want to do well must provide a slick experience that offers no resistance.
That’s where the marketing and graphic arts professionals can play a significant role. Marketers gather and understand the data from across their channels. Graphic arts professionals collaborate with them to support the interactive customer experience process that is personalised and targeted. It has to be meaningful, engaging and deliver campaigns with purpose. That purpose revolves around the customer at the centre, their experience of the brand, the services, solutions and products paramount.