There’s no point in sugar-coating it: 2020 has been a year of unprecedented challenges, unknowns, headaches and, at times, heartaches.
But it’s also been a time of learning, adapting, radically re-thinking, and staying the course – all in different measures, at different stages. In many ways, many brands and brand leaders have gained strengths and improved abilities at speeds unimaginable before this year. I’ve watched it happen, first hand, many times this year. That’s why I particularly enjoyed this recent article by consultant Jay Dettling for Forbes. In it, he celebrates four remarkable advances that many brands, marketers, and customer care leaders have managed to make, not just in spite of the pandemic but as a result of it.
Together, these four changes highlight the growing importance of connecting with our customers, anticipating their wants and needs, and investing in the technology and infrastructure to adapt quickly to those needs. At Skybridge Americas, that mindset is what led us to invest in the early Agents Anywhere innovations that allowed us to move our entire customer care agent workforce to at-home without missing a beat. If you would like to know more about the benefits of outsourcing your customer care operation and how Skybridge Americas can help you, please reach out. We would love to talk!
Four Ways We Have Changed As Marketers In 2020
By Jay Dettling
Experience is everything, and as marketers, we want to create memorable experiences for our clients and their customers across all touch points. So, when life shifted overnight to an unrecognizable state due to the pandemic, we also had to make the shift — as consumers and as business professionals. Although these changes were unexpected and, yes, overwhelming in the moment, I take comfort in the fact that I can now clearly see how we have become more agile, prepared, personalized and innovative as a result.
The business of marketing has always been fluid, continuously adapting to the changing times, new technologies and ever-evolving consumer preferences. When faced with a pandemic crisis, the agility we already held as marketers was propelled into a new definition of what it truly means to be quick on the draw. From completely upending a current business model to rolling out new products and services, certain strategies planned for the next few years were, out of necessity, executed within the span of only a few weeks or months.
Covid-19 has shown us just how quickly we can transform the way we work, as well as how critical marketing is as the connection between today’s fast-changing landscape and a brand, its channel partners and customers. Overcoming the first few pivots ultimately served as conditioning for building up stamina to prepare for the many curveballs ahead.
The migration to digital has been on the agenda long before Covid-19 became a household name. Although preexisting, this digital urge rapidly graduated for many into means for survival once the pandemic hit. Within a matter of weeks to months, brands without online ordering were standing up new e-commerce platforms, and those already using digital infrastructures were bracing their server capacities for the impact of increased online traffic. But the focus is not just on digitizing.
Brands should be reimagining the entire customer journey in these new boundaries — from awareness to transaction to retention — and how to continue making customer interactions more seamless. The competitive advantage lies in how you offer the same accessibility as others and then improve the customer experience in every touch point.
If a restaurant simply offers online ordering and pickup, how can you make that experience as frictionless as possible, and where can you add value? And just when you think you have found the next solution, go back and rework it again and again. There will always be a “next best thing” to strive toward, and if your brand is not the one offering it, someone else will.
Senior Vice President, Sales and Marketing
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