‘Ecosystem Thinking’ - Optimizing Potential While Managing CCM Complexity Through Collaboration
In today’s uncertain, ever-changing and increasingly digital environment, becoming more digital and agile in all areas of the business, while ensuring security and compliance, is now a survival strategy for organizations.
At the same time, businesses need to cater to a multitude of consumer preferences to meet heightened expectations and ensure a great customer experience, while also focusing on cutting costs.
Many of these variables can be conflicting, which makes it hard to design a strategy to overcome all the associated challenges. It is no wonder then, that it is getting more difficult for organizations to develop and implement a successful and resilient customer communications management strategy.
Regulated industries, in particular, are in a tough spot when it comes to enhancing customer communication in order to deliver an exceptional customer experience.
In this blog post, I will explore the concept of ‘ecosystem thinking’ and how it helps with developing agile CXM / CCM technology strategies and making pragmatic buying decisions.
But first, let’s look at the top three trends that executives report are driving CXM / CCM technology and strategy decisions in various financial institutions:
Trend 1: Removing friction from the customer journey
In addition to offering exceptional value, retail banks need to focus on each customer journey, creating a seamless customer experience no matter what channel customers choose to engage on while removing any interaction that causes friction. For example, complex communication and issue resolution processes will cause unnecessary frustration and stress for people who are already anxious and uncertain. Helping customers make financial decisions by ensuring that processes are simple and intuitive, is imperative.
Trend 2: Use of big data
Access to accurate and useable data is the foundation for creating a seamless, omnichannel customer experience. Having the tools and technology that gather or analyze complex data sets is an investment into the insight required to make strategic communication decisions.
But, for many, the task of integrating multiple systems that hold disparate data is a huge challenge. Fortunately, there are smart ways in which to leverage data without massive investment.
Trend 3: Use of APIs and open banking
Open banking, driven by APIs is becoming a key trend. The process enables third parties to develop services and applications around them, which helps reduce development time and enhances functionality. However, there is a growing need for closed security ecosystems, this is due to the evolution of both international legislation and compliance regulations.
Trend 1: The need to gain / leverage deep customer insights
To achieve a great customer experience, it’s vital that wealth managers 'get to know' their clients and put them first by driving a company-wide customer-centric mindset. To achieve this, they must leverage client data, using specific data analytics software to generate more personalized and targeted client communications.
Trend 2: Intelligent / AI-based solutions
AI (Artificial Intelligence), among other use cases, enables hyper-personalization, which incorporates real-time customer data to ascertain the most relevant content on an individual level. It is the next step in a personalized approach and demonstrates that the organization values clients on an individual level, which in turn fosters loyalty and trust. Wealth management organizations are well-positioned to leverage the power of AI, as they have access to a large amount of client data.
Trend 3: Open APIs
Open APIs provide real-time client data, allowing wealth management organizations the opportunity to learn more about their clients in order to better serve them. They also enable easy integration of various technologies. For example, allowing the software that wealth managers use for services like investments and portfolio building to communicate with one other.
Trend 1: Customer-centricity
Up until now, insurers have been slow in adopting a customer-centric approach. With customer experience now a key differentiator today, the insurance industry is forced to become less focused on driving down costs and more on improving customer experience.
Trend 2: Intelligence and AI
AI is set to change the way insurers engage and service customers. New, intelligent technologies such as AI and Machine Learning are going to drastically improve the Insurer/policyholder relationship, by enabling a continuous cycle of interactions. The combination of AI-based technology and big data is enabling insurers to predict and prevent before the event, as opposed to repair or replace after the event.
Trend 3: Urgency around legacy system transformation
Digital transformation in insurance is now more important than ever to ensure success and competitiveness in the current digital market. However, many insurance organizations have obsolete legacy systems that are not easily integrated with modern technologies and systems and are thus a barrier to digital transformation. As a result, insurers need to urgently update all or some of their legacy systems to better support their digital initiatives.
These trends were reported by executives during recent market research studies. Do you see the pattern? Across the financial services industry segments, firms identify the same areas of focus for their growth. What these top trends tell us, is that shared challenges revolve around consumer insights, AI, and being connected to the ecosystem.
After all, how can organizations get deep insights on consumers, if they do not consider third-party sources of data? How can they analyze consumer behavior with AI if they do not have access to activity tracking across all channels, inside and even outside of their own customer experience ecosystem?
Open APIs enable organizations to connect to the broader ecosystem. This way, they can benefit from the entirety of what modern technology solutions can offer.
What does it really mean to ‘think ecosystem’ when it comes to CXM / CCM technology strategies and buying decisions?
‘Ecosystem thinking’ means opening your organization up for endless possibilities while managing the complexity of making it happen through collaboration with third parties.
Let’s explore the concept further by considering how Doxim defines the ecosystem and the value of being connected to it.
1.It’s highly likely that your organization already has a ‘tech stack’ which incorporates multiple applications and systems, with great capabilities. Collectively, they help resolve many of the current customer communication and customer experience challenges faced by your organization.
This stack should however be evaluated to determine whether it fits your organization’s future CXM / CCM technology strategies, or not. Through this process, it will become evident which applications and processes should be made obsolete versus which can be kept and upgraded.
2. Some CCM platforms focus on composition, some on authoring and others on omnichannel orchestration. When choosing a platform, consider how much breadth and flexibility if offers, as you need it become a strong, powerful addition to your future ecosystem of CXM / CCM technology solutions.
It is also important to determine the benefits of breadth vs. focus. A vendor with a broader set of features in their own platform is likely to be able to connect you to more adjacent solutions in various categories as well.
3. Think about your near and mid-term customer engagement and customer experience goals and what tools you should have in your technology mix that, traditionally, aren’t provided by any CCM vendors.
These include emerging technologies, such as chatbots, AI technologies, social media communication platforms, etc. Basically, all new technologies that deliver the functionality and experiences expected by consumers today.
It is important to note that these emerging technologies are available in such a variety of technology categories that you would never find them from one or even a dozen vendors.
Think about how easily new communication formats, channels, partners, and apps can fit with the ‘core CCM/CXM’ vendor’s tech stack.
For example, how difficult would it be for your CCM technology provider to connect a social media channel as a new method of customer communication for your CSRs? And what about adding interactive video capabilities, using your customers’ statement/profile data for personalization?
Choose a partner that supports ecosystem thinking and can help future proof your CXM / CCM technology strategies
If you deliberately choose partners that are aware of these current ecosystem challenges and design their platforms for easy connectivity – you will be ahead of the curve. You can also avoid lengthy and costly custom integration projects when you decide to act on your comprehensive communications strategy in the future.
Given our world is changing faster than our plans, ecosystem thinking is essential.
Choose a CXM / CCM technology partner that already ‘thinks ecosystem’ and offers a different degree of completeness and breadth when it comes to bringing the latest CXM and CCM technology to your organization.
Vice President, CCM Product Management & Product Marketing at Doxim.
Olga focuses on delivering business value to Doxim’s clients through world-class SaaS CCM solutions. She has a strong background in CCM technology for the regulated industries, product management and project management.
Olga joined Doxim in 2017 as the head of Product Marketing, Demand Generation, and Communications, and prior to Doxim, held product, marketing and strategy leadership positions at companies of all sizes, from startups to Fortune 500, including Telmetrics, OpenText, and JVL.
Olga holds an MBA from the Paul Merage School of Business at the University of California, an Honors Master's degree in Finance, and an Honors Bachelor's degree in Economics and International Management. Olga is a regular contributor to industry media, covering topics in marketing, financial services, productivity, and work management.