Forget Kevin Bacon: 6 Tips for Creating Zero Degrees of Separation Between You and Your Customers
Every C-suite exec is under scrutiny to bring home the bacon. And, for the CMO, there’s no better way to do so than to achieve true customer success. That term is pretty elusive to a CEO and his or her business counterparts, who claim they’ve been focused on making customers happy since the beginning of time.
But for customer success teams who are in the trenches with customers, they know it means truly connecting with every contact at a customer organization through their entire lifecycle — which takes more than wining and dining.
In the age of the customer, the Internet of Things and the subscription economy, it means real-time technology and integration across multiple customer channels like social, email, Web and mobile. While these technologies bring many benefits, they’ve also built a virtual wall between companies and their customers — creating data silos and disconnected teams and processes that can damage a customer’s experience with a brand.
Forget Kevin Bacon, customer-centric organizations need to create zero degrees of separation between themselves and their customers. The challenge is that customer contacts are created and stored in multiple applications such as sales, support, marketing and services. And, an individual contact can be active across many channels including social media, community, product and campaigns.
Where to start? Here are six tips:
- Capture Contacts From Everywhere: When a new user is activated, a user contact is created in the support application. When a new member joins the community, a member contact is created in the community application. The same is true with marketing and other applications. Capturing the new contact data into customer success management applications gives a complete view of all contacts and all points of engagement for an account.
- Enrich Contact Data: When a new contact is captured, the first step is to enrich contact record with data from other services such as InsideView or Full Contact. In the case of Full Contact, users can grab social media information such as a contact’s Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn handle, as well as their influence rankings. This data becomes critical to making customer success plays more intelligent and targeted.
Matt Shanahan is the CMO at Seattle, Wash.-based Azuqua. He has nearly 30 years of experience in the technology industry, ranging from Accenture to startups. He is a proven entrepreneur as the VP of product marketing and management for Documentum from startup through initial public offering and most recently as co-founder and SVP of strategy for Scout Analytics.