To satisfy the expectations of today’s customers, you need to meet them where they are. By harnessing the power of digital experience platforms (DXP) and connected data, many businesses have successfully enabled customers to do what they want—when they want:
- Want that cute top your favorite influencer is wearing? With shopping directly enabled in Instagram, you can tap the post and buy the shirt in seconds.
- Got an issue with your order? Customer service reps access tweets, DMs, emails and texts from a single interface—enabling them to quickly resolve your problem.
- Forgot your wallet at the grocery store? Simply touch your iPhone to the credit card reader and check out with Apple Pay.
As we look ahead to the post-pandemic era, we’ll be challenged by much more than technology changes when it comes to customer behavior. In both B2C and B2B sectors, social isolation and shelter-in-place will likely have a lasting impact on customer mindsets and value systems. While the world will eventually reopen, the new normal won’t look anything like 2019 and early 2020. Shelter-in-place is fundamentally shifting how people think and behave:
- Businesses are realizing the cost efficiencies of remote workforces. A high percentage of employees will never return to brick and mortar offices.
- Many customers are finding independence and cost savings during shelter-in-place.
- Telemedicine and online learning will become a permanent trend in healthcare and education.
3 emerging post-pandemic core values
In many ways, COVID-19 has accelerated digital transformation and behavioral trends. You can bet customers will be reluctant to go back to long commutes, lengthy lines and excess spending. A post-pandemic market will likely favor companies that emphasize:
- Trust: The failure of governments to respond effectively to the threat of the coronavirus has been exacerbated by the erosion of trust in media and politicians. Companies must focus on earning—and maintaining—the trust of their customers. Every. Single. Day.
- Safety: Once businesses reopen, some customers will eagerly go back to pre-pandemic life, while others may take weeks, months or even years to feel comfortable in public gatherings. This instinct of safety and self-preservation will extend beyond COVID-19 and include an emphasis on information security, protection of privacy and personal data.
- Self-reliance: “We’re all in this together” sings the quarantine chorus. But are we really together? In reality, each individual is social distancing on their own or with a small number of close family and friends. And in that time, everyone has had to become self-reliant in order to survive.
Truth be told, these values have been seeping back into consumer behavior for years—with customers continuing to value convenience, personalization and quality over brand recognition. So how are brands looking to leverage evolving customer values to drive disruption?
Let’s look at beauty brand Madison Reed.
For decades, customers have only had two choices when it comes to hair color—purchase an inexpensive, low-quality DIY brand at the drugstore or pay steep prices for salon visits. To disrupt the industry, Madison Reed sought to deliver the best of both worlds. They knew women wanted the convenience and affordability of at-home dye as well as the quality of salon, and they used advances in direct-to-consumer technology to make it happen. Before the pandemic, Madison Reed was making a small dent in traditional businesses with a direct-to-consumer (DTC) and do-it-yourself (DIY) model. But with COVID-19 closing salons indefinitely, customer adoption is rapidly accelerating.
During the new normal, customers are turning to DTC and DIY brands for quality and convenience. Companies that recognize these behavioral shifts and react quickly will have a huge advantage. An agile response means aligning people, process and technology to empower customers. Fortunately, DTC and DIY aren’t new concepts. You may already have the right tools you need to shift your strategy today. Let’s look at the Salesforce platform.
|Businesses can:||With Salesforce:|
|Create new DIY customer journeys||Marketing Cloud|
|Enable self-service and expert support||Service Cloud, Knowledge Base, Communities|
|Analyze social trends to better understand customer needs and behaviors||Social Studio|
|Deliver 1:1 experiences across web, mobile, social and text message||Interaction Studio|
|Define new purchasing options||Commerce Cloud|
|Optimize journeys based on auto machine learning insights||Einstein AI|
Want to learn how to pivot your company’s business model to capture DIYers? Contact us to talk to our CX experts.