Genesys G-Summits are a global series of events that stopped in London this week. For the team at Genesys, our London event had one goal: To reflect on how digital transformation has changed our lives and what it means to deliver next generation customer relationships that keep pace with those changes.
Joining the Genesys team at G-Summit London were many of our customers, a large percentage of whom have been with us for a very long time. A quick show of hands in the morning at the keynote showed that most have been with us for at least three years, and plenty of hands were still in the air when we asked if any had been with us longer than eight.
In any business relationship that extends more than a couple of years, that is a true partnership. The technology we delivered to meet our customers’ needs eight years ago is light years away from what we’re delivering now. The reality is that we’ve evolved together, collaborating and sharing ideas and plans, and we continue to work side-by-side to assess the changing needs of customers and establish technology and service roadmaps that will meet those needs today and in the future.
Below are some of my key takeaways from the G-Summit London and the customer relationships trends brands should be planning for right now.
Long-time listener, first-time Whatsapper
When I think about changing customer needs and behaviours, my immediate thought is Whatsapp, which my family has shifted to as their primary form of communication. The main driver for that move in my opinion is the ticks: One tick sent, two ticks delivered, two blue ticks read.
With those blue ticks I can tell whether or not my teenage daughters have read my messages. Simple but powerful points of differentiation such as those are defining the rapid, sometimes overnight, rise and fall of new versus old channels of communication, and hit home the need for us – that is, both Genesys and our customers – to be ever-ready for rapid changes to the customer experience landscape. While we can’t guess what the next big channel will be, we can plan with certainty that there will be one. And that we need to be ready for it.
Customer relationships are ready for anything
The sheer pace of change in the way consumers are interacting with businesses is huge. In customer-facing businesses – whether a disruptive new entrant to the market or an established business – to compete you must constantly innovate and change, such is the period of change we’re in right now.
In Genesys terminology we talk about omnichannel customer experience, and by that we mean a 360-degree view of the customer, regardless of the channel(s) they want to talk to you on, and regardless of the type of enquiry. At G-Summit London we built a picture of the ideal customer journey and how to keep pace with changing needs. A rich, seamless system of engagement for customers across any and many channels.
Also at the event sessions, we covered the core technology trends that we believe will become pervasive by 2020, their potential impact on next generation customer relationships and how to start planning for them today.
The uberisation of customer experience
Uber was namechecked at least a dozen times by speakers as a model for disruption through better service delivery, and the ‘Uberisation’ of services is a common language we’re using to illustrate the power of better customer experience to differentiate in crowded sectors.
Our platinum sponsor Dimension Data opened our eyes to the potential of IoT-enabled customer experiences to create true brand advocates, and illustrated how this technology is already embedded in everything from washing machines to cars.
We also touched on Big Data – but had a very different conversation compared to the one we were having five years ago. Big Data is not new to our customers, but the increase in channels has drastically increased data volumes, and there are new challenges around how to enhance their ability to gain wallet share with consumers using that data.
Connected customer experiences across all channels, touchpoints, and interactions was also a core focus of discussion at G-Summit this year. It now feels natural for consumers to engage with a brand across social, web, chat and phone at the same time using a tablet, smartphone and laptop, but not many brands are equipped for that level of integration at the moment. We firmly believe that seamless customer engagement across different channels at once will be the norm by 2020, and a big focus for us in the short term is to provide a single platform that enables customers to be ready for that new customer experience challenge.
When we covered these trends there was plenty of nodding and agreement, but also an acknowledgement that 2020 is just three and a half years away. To achieve that ‘Uberised’ level of disruptive service differentiation brands should be planning for these trends now, and our plan is to work alongside and partner with those brands to continue evolving together.
If you would like to attend a Genesys G-Summit event in your country, see the complete calendar of events here.