Today’s “empowered customer” puts businesses to the test.
And that test goes way beyond their expectations of receiving a compelling customer experience regardless of how, when and where they engage a brand – be it brick and mortar, mobile or online.
The fact is that consumers are far more price conscious now that they have access to the information they need to make better, more informed decisions. Furthermore, in 2012, the IBM Institute for Business Value – Global Empowered Consumer Study found that 61% of consumers trust their friends’ reviews more than experts’. This represents a growing shift from the days in which product pitches and celebrity endorsements were a sure fire way to drive sales, especially in the CPG industry.
We’re also learning more about how consumers use multiple channels in real time. This includes the dreaded “in-store search” to see how the local or product competition stacks up, and “showrooming” to see a product in person while checking online for the best price. Consumers then use those same channels to vent frustration when they don’t get want they want.
All of this leads to two questions every marketer must ask:
- How did this happen?
- What can I do to pass the test?
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