This is a big day for Microsoft Dynamics CRM. In our efforts to enable our customers to deliver amazing customer experiences, we are taking a monumental step at just the right time. I’ve been travelling quite a bit over the past year, talking to prospects and customers to truly understand what businesses are struggling to deal with as technology continues to redefine what is possible. What I’ve heard over and over is that many of the people I speak with aren’t just looking for a simple solution to a specific problem, they are literally trying to transform their businesses and are seeking new solutions that can help them succeed. You don’t have to take my word on this, let’s explore some of the statistics that bring their stories to life.
First, let’s look at what is going on in the office of the CMO. Changes in consumer behavior are dictating a significant shift in what makes marketing effective. The ability to shop anywhere at any time, gather information about products and services and promote the social conversation means that across the board—whether you’re a consumer, citizen or business customer—you can have an impact on any brand you wish. Indeed, a study conducted by Adobe found that 76% of marketers think marketing has changed more in the past 2 years than the previous 50! Some good news…Marketers are being given the budgets that used to be reserved for IT. In fact, Gartner predicts that by 2017, CMOs will spend more on IT than CIOs. Why is this good? Well, marketers are able to invest in solutions that can help them adapt to this change. At the same time though, they are struggling to figure out what the right solution might be. Most choices lead to a fragmented marketing approach which leaves CMOs unable to accurately measure results. And that simply won’t do, especially when, as a recent study from Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business revealed, 2 out of every 3 CMOs are feeling pressure from the board to prove the value of their marketing investments. What’s even worse is that fragmentation is not only felt internally, it is felt by the customer, and that puts the brand at risk.
Now, let’s examine what’s going on when it comes to providing service to customers. Here again, consumer behavior has changed and customer expectations have risen. Customers want to be able to resolve issues quickly and easily. According to digital marketing expert, Steven Van Belleghem, 67% of customers prefer self-service over speaking to a live person. Which is probably not a bad thing given that one study I’ve heard about states that a majority of people report feeling physically ill immediately following a customer service experience (If anyone actually knows that study, please send the reference!). Regardless of whether that is true or not, most of us can relate to the frustration encountered when we get poor service and we can choose how we want to react. Social media has given us a voice to let the world know. At the same time, we can “vote with our feet” shifting our loyalty to another brand. In fact, 62% of global consumers switched service providers in 2013 due to poor customer service experience. The ability to switch brands so easily significantly raises the stakes when it comes to providing good service, elevating decisions about customer care delivery to a strategic level.
You can get a feeling from the details above some of the challenges companies are facing. I’m here to tell you that Microsoft Dynamics CRM can help. With Dynamics Marketing, we are arming marketers with the solution they need to create a unifying foundation that allows them to plan effectively, execute across traditional and digital channels delivering qualified leads to their sales teams, and analyze the results that prove the value of their investments. A unique single window experience enables them to design, monitor and rapidly change complex multi-stage, multi-wave and trigger based campaigns making agile marketing a reality. On the service side of the house, with enhancements to Microsoft Dynamics CRM paired with the power of Parature, we are giving companies true omni-channel customer care capabilities driven by knowledge so they can get the right product or service to the right customer at the right time. We also understand that CRM is not the only application agents need to resolve customer issues and so we are helping service agents deliver great service leveraging a landscape of diverse applications. With Unified Service Desk we provide a composition framework for customer service agents to deliver effective service pulling information seamlessly not only from CRM but also from diverse legacy systems many companies already have in place – and the beauty is configuration is easy. And that’s not all…
We are also bringing impressive social listening and analytics capabilities to every person in the organization through Microsoft Social Listening. This is not a capability that we are relegating to a few, we want the benefits to impact the whole of your business in the context of what people are doing – truly uniting the social and transactional worlds together like never before. Now your marketers can track brand sentiment, readily identify influencers, and easily spot trends that directly impact their marketing efforts. Salespeople can track potential customers and carefully watch competitors to take advantage of opportunities as they arise. And customer care teams can monitor social media to identify issues early on as well as reach customers who may be at the moment of truth where they are deciding to remain loyal, or not. These are the opportunities we don’t want our customer to miss. This is when you win the hearts of your customers. This is when you can deliver truly amazing customer experiences.
If you haven’t taken a close look at Microsoft Dynamics CRM, now’s the time.