Reinventing businesses around customers continues to be a “part of the fabric of American enterprise,” according to Forbes, which noted that most of these changes today are driven by technology and innovation. In addition, Leontyne Green Sykes, Chief Marketing Officer at Ikea, noted that customers are increasingly pressed by time and looking for convenience and accessibility. Ikea has listened to customers to generate a different approach by making sure that offerings are diverse in style, color and design and “delivers a money proposition for our customers,” Sykes told Forbes, adding that Ikea is more than just a place to purchase, it is “solution-oriented” with “customizable home furnishings” to meet the customers’ needs.
Martin Rawls-Meehan, CEO of custom mattress company Reverie, told Forbes that their customer experience is integrally connected with product design. The company created an algorithm that is part of the customer sales experience and creates an immediate interaction with the brand. Customers can measure their biometric data and sleeping preferences to ensure they’re going to find a mattress that fits just right. “We’ve found that that works very, very well, and people appreciate that level of customized service that they can’t get from any other product,” said Meehan.
Cassel said it’s essential that companies also consider their culture and workforce as employees are the face of the brand. He points to Starbucks, Apple and Google as companies that have built their business through seamless integration of both the customer and employee experience. These companies are often going to great lengths in a desire to attract and retain quality talent. He said they are particularly interested in millennial workers as part of a “total package” of innovation and forward-thinking business environments.
“The most important thing is to find the approach that will fit your company’s unique needs. Try evaluating what other companies in and outside your industry have done, and find bits and pieces that are a fit for you,” said Cassel.