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Customer-Centricity: Beyond the Theory

The customer-centric theory may, at first blush, seem a backwards approach to profitability. The focus is not on the customer’s wallet, but the customer himself. Customer-centricity entails a company understanding individual customer needs and improving the customer experience thereby creating sustainable and profitable customer relationships impermeable by competitors.

Many companies claim to be customer-centric, but few live up to the standards of creating exceptional customer experiences. What does it look like to be customer-centric in today’s world? Here are the top five critical components for building a customer-centric organization.

Becoming a customer-centric organization is not simple. It requires significant front-end investment, and months of data collection and planning. It also fights our natural instincts towards immediate profitability, which makes it an unpopular choice for many companies. However, a company focusing on the long-term will find significant value to making the culture change.

One company that is seeing the benefits of switching to a customer-centric culture is Best Buy. From the company’s switch in 2005 to 2006 they saw a 12 percent growth in revenue and returned $922 million to shareholders through stock repurchases and dividends, “nearly a three-fold increase over fiscal 2005,” according to Best Buy’s 2006 Annual Report.

Many businesses do not fit this mold. “Globally, 75 percent of commercial businesses believe they are losing money through missed business opportunities because they are unable to quickly and effectively profile customer and prospect data,” according to a survey from QAS, a division of Experian Marketing Services Business.

Is your company customer-centric? Let Customer Insight Group help you create a customer-centric culture. Check out our free white paper on customer-centricity.