Two-thirds of consumers and business buyers are likely to switch brands if they’re treated like a number rather than an individual, according to a new report.
Based on the latest version of Salesforce Connected Client Status Report, 65% of the more than 7,000 consumers and business buyers surveyed worldwide say that a personalized or exclusive offer influences their brand loyalty, and 75% of businesses deliver a consistent experience wherever they interact with them, both on both online and offline channels.
The report’s findings indicate that consumers want more smart communications from brands and more engagement-based interactions. For example, 63% of Millennials agreed they were willing to share data with companies that send personalized offers and discounts, and 58% would share data to access product recommendations that match. their needs. Generation X consumers were behind those numbers at 58 percent and 52 percent, respectively.
Additionally, over three-quarters of all consumers said it was absolutely essential or very important to work with a salesperson who focuses on meeting customer needs instead of making a quick sale.
On the business side, 74% of shoppers said sending personalized or exclusive offers and discounts had a major or moderate influence on their loyalty.
Customer service also has a major influence on brand loyalty, and 71% of consumers said that customer service provided on any day and at any time had an influence on their perception of a brand. Just over two-thirds (69%) said the same about personalized customer service. Additionally, 80% of professional buyers and 64% of consumers expect businesses to respond and interact with them in real time.
Fifty-eight percent of consumers agree that technology has dramatically changed their expectations of how businesses should interact with them, and seven in ten believe technology has enabled them to do business more than ever. elsewhere. Interestingly, 51 percent feel much more empowered as consumers than they did five years ago.
On the business side, 83% of those polled said technology has kept their business more informed than ever about product choices, and 82% agree that technology is making it easier than ever to develop business elsewhere. More than three-quarters also feel much more empowered as decision-makers than five years ago, and 77% said technology has changed their organization’s expectations of how businesses should interact with them.
It’s also clear that digital conversations make or destroy brands. Seventy-one percent of those surveyed said they were more likely to buy products that have positive consumer reviews online, 52 percent agree that social media has given them more power as consumers and 43 percent use social media to express their opinions about brands and products. .
Commenting on the results, Derek Laney, Product Marketing Manager at Salesforce APAC, said there is no doubt that the connected customer is the driving force of our time, demanding constant innovation, mobility and gradual disruption. As noted in the report, 57% of those surveyed said that it is absolutely essential or very important for the companies they buy from to be innovative.
“They demand brands to offer superhuman levels of personalization and accessibility while expecting brands to be more human and socially engaged, ”said Laney.
“It’s no longer enough for the customer experience to be effortless. Increasingly, customers expect every touchpoint to be personalized and proactive. Marketers need to ask themselves: Does the organization come together to anticipate customer needs? Do they know the customer well enough to be able to anticipate his needs? If not, it’s time to step up their game.
With the arrival of breakthrough new technologies, including artificial intelligence and the Internet of Things, customer-centric technology will continue to have a profound impact on how businesses should approach sales, service. and marketing, Laney continued.
“For businesses that are ready to pivot and invest in humanizing and personalizing their interactions with their customers, there are more opportunities than ever to differentiate and succeed,” he said.
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