Only 49% of marketers are pushed to reinvent customer service due to technology

Technology is causing disruption in most markets, but only 49% of marketers believe they are pressured to develop their customer service as a result of disruptive technology

Only 49% of marketers have said they are under pressure to reinvent their customer service strategy as a result of technology disruption, according to recent research.

A study by the Chartered Institute of Marketing found 28% of markers feel they do not have the finances to invest in customer experience changes needed in the wake of disruptive tech.

Customer experience is becoming increasingly important for consumer-focused firms, with 20% of businesses saying customer experience would be their main focus in 2017.

Tech is playing a role in delivering the services businesses use to deliver a good customer experience, with 42% of marketers saying personalisation will be a priority over the next year and 37% looking to focus on data-driven marketing.

Personalisation is a tactic that is increasing among brands and retailers. They use data to tailor interactions with consumers around their interests and previous brand interactions, something that is becoming increasingly important in an omni-channel environment where customers have a lot of choice.

However, 11% said customer experience is not a focus for them over the next year.

Chris Daly, chief executive of the Chartered Institute of Marketing, said customer experience should be an important focus as the customer is once again regaining the power in the relationship between customers and brands.

“I question the 11% who say customer experience is not a focus – no matter what business you are in, the customer should always be at the heart of the operation. It’s encouraging to see customer experience is being given the consideration needed at a business level, and that marketing is clearly playing a more strategic role,” said Daly.

Just as technology is blurring the line between online and offline shopping, 33% of marketers believe the lines between digital and marketing are becoming more blurred.

Almost a third of marketers said they were the part of the business in charge of the customer experience strategy, and 15% of firms said they have undergone transformation in the past year to stay relevant in the current landscape.

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Marketing technology, such as Chatbots and virtual reality (VR), is starting to appear as a focus in the marketing industry for customer engagement, however only 9% said this will be a focus over the next year.

This focus on using technology to increase customer experience is changing career paths of those in the industry, and 32% of marketers said marketing is now seen as a pathway towards senior management. 

“It’s encouraging to see so many young people joining the marketing profession with long-term ambitions of reaching senior management positions,” said Daly.

“An increasing number of marketers have made the move to chief executive roles. This trend was also reflected by the Office for National Statistics (ONS), who revealed the role of marketing director is now the third most highly paid job title in the UK.”

However, the 7% who said they pursued a marketing role with the goal of being promoted to senior management no longer see this as an option, perhaps as a result of industry skills gaps.

The digital skills gaps in the UK is costing the economy around £63bn a year, and many people are unable to participate in modern society due to the increasing number of job roles that require technology skills.

Read more on IT for retail and logistics

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