So, you run a manufacturing business, perhaps selling industrial machinery and components, or chemicals or other raw materials to downstream OEMs. Operating mostly in a business-to-business environment, you mak ask:
How does all the fluffy talk about “customer experience” and “digital transformation” relate to your business?
Here’s our thoughts on it.
You’re probably operating a few different sales channels – regional sales offices, distributors, maybe a B2B web shop and direct EDI connections. Beyond new equipment sales, you perhaps run a separate aftermarket & service business unit and a network of authorized service partners — keeping customers happy across the lifecycle of your products.
That setup has probably worked well for you for decades, but here’s some questions to ask yourself:
With your current way of running all those channels, how easy is it to:
- enter new markets?
- attract new customers and onboard new distributors and resellers?
- keep distributors and service partners truly loyal to your offering?
With your current way of running sales,
- how efficiently are you responding to inquiries with spot-on product data and quotations?
- how good are you at getting the right price out of every contract and deal?
- how easy is to launch new products to the market, across all channels?
And from a customer or distributor perspective,
- how easy are you to do business with?
- how often do you meet or exceed the customer’s expectations regarding ease of ordering, accuracy of availability and delivery promises?
- how hazzle-free is the long-term maintenance and operation of your products?
The list of relevant questions could go on and on, and should of course be calibrated according to your growth strategy. But most likely, there are heaps and bounds of things which could be done better once you start digging.
That’s where the perspective of Customer Experience steps in: focusing on how to (re-)build your customer facing activities and services so that they help your industrial customers get their job done in the smoothest possible way. And in parallel with that, this is where digital sales transformation steps in: engineering your processes, data and systems so that they support all your sales channels in the best possible way.
Based on our experience, there’s usually tons of work to do to get a B2B business fully digitalized and CX-calibrated. Knowing where to start can be daunting, and adapting that to an actionable plan and matching it to your IT architecture is a lot of work. That’s where we step in. We’ll help you:
- find answers to questions like the ones above, connecting back to your strategy
- build a roadmap of new capabilities your organization should develop to provide better customer experience and sell more
- understand how digital tools like ecommerce, CRM, CPQ, IoT, data, analytics and machine learning fit into the picture – serving the needs of your customers and internal stakeholders as well