This month love is in the air, at ON THE MARK we believe in addressing the important issues in business relationships. Learning how to design your organisation when you need to have a customer intimate relationship is important. Below one of our experienced Consultants Josh Jones explains things you should consider.
What is Customer Intimacy?
To answer directly, customer intimacy is a strategy. A strategy that creates a competitive advantage that allow the organization to fully engage with its customers. It means segmenting and targeting markets, tailoring offerings and predicting behaviours to match the demands of those niches. Truly customer intimate organizations know more about their customers than the customers know about themselves!
Customer Intimacy is not an off-the-shelf product that organizations can merely implement at will. It is a major strategic decision that will often require a fundamental re-alignment of the organization to deliver it.
A common mistake when designing for customer intimacy is thinking it is the same as customer service. Customer service is a transactional, reactive process, essential for many organizations but it is not customer intimate. Let’s look at Apple for example, their competitive advantage is ‘Product Leadership’, getting the best products to market, which arguably they do. They have the genius bar where you can book 1:1 appointments with a ‘genius’ who greets you by name and assists your needs. Good customer service but not customer intimate. Nordstrom, on the other hand, has empowered its employees to do almost anything to ensure its customers get precisely what they want, customer intimacy.
To learn more about this difference our now retired Senior Consultant Simon Davies goes into more detail in a previous article about customer intimacy.
To learn more about redesigning an organization, contact OTM.
ON THE MARK is the leader in organization design. We are a global boutique consultancy with offices in the USA and UK. OTM owns the industry’s most integrated, comprehensive and holistic solution. The team at ON THE MARK also enables clients to realize their future ambitions.