3 Surprising Ways to Drive Business Performance
Is artificial intelligence, digital marketing, predictive analytics, customer engagement, big data, or some other “shiny object” the key to driving business performance? Certainly all of these endeavors can make a difference in revenue growth. Yet there is a bigger picture. None of these is standalone in what’s required to sustain revenue growth, and they may or may not be big influencers of profit growth.
Research of 10,000 companies across 25 years proved that a strong customer culture drives business performance in over 35 performance measures, including ROI, growth, customer retention, market share and sales.1
When you think about it, that makes a lot of sense:
- 40-70% of customers switch loyalty due to a perceived attitude of indifference
- 91% of companies claim to be customer-focused, yet only 10% of customers agree2
Surely you’re asking: how can something like strong customer culture be quantified? Answer: the 35 performance measures mentioned above can be distilled into 3 pivotal factors — (1) Customer Insight & Foresight, (2) Competitor Insight & Foresight, (3) Peripheral Vision.
As you explore the following descriptions of these 3 monumental factors, consider the degree to which they are embraced in your organization’s strategy.
1) Customer Insight & Foresight
The extent to which employees — at any and every level and in any and every function — monitor, understand, and act on (a) current customer needs and satisfaction and (b) potential customer needs and opportunities.
As the ultimate source of salaries, budgets and dividends, customers make the world go ’round. So it makes sense that being attuned to customers, through and through, is a massive driver of business performance.
Bad habits in organizations of any kind excuse certain roles from paying attention to the ripple-effect they have on customers, or at least, to their impact on those who serve customers. Poor traditions allow weak accountability for acting on customer needs. Inside-out thinking creates silos of many kinds that get in the way of maturity in this factor, and of business performance overall.
2) Competitor Insight & Foresight
The extent to which employees — at any and every level and in any and every function — monitor, understand, and respond to (a) competitor strengths and weaknesses and (b) new market entrants and potential competitors.
As the contextual realities of customers’ spending choices, your competitors (along with you) shape customers’ expectations. So it’s logical that being astute about competitors, in all you do, is a substantial driver of business performance.
Silo-ization of competitor insight to functions such as strategic planning, business intelligence, product marketing and research and development hamper your organizational mojo competitively. Standing in your customers’ shoes to gain their perspective of your competitors can influence every job level and functional area in setting appropriate performance standards for themselves. It’s especially effective to see competitors from the standpoint of different customer segments/personas. This can be instrumental in driving business performance overall.
3) Peripheral Vision
The extent to which employees — at any and every level and in any and every function — monitor, understand, and respond to trends in the larger environment (political, economic, social and technical).
Context is Go to the full article.