The Financial Services Forum recently posed the following question on their Linkedin Group page – The Customer-Centric Conundrum. Is it a synonym for service? Or a subterfuge for cross-sales?
This is what I think: Customer centricity means treating customers well holistically, taking into account service, product and all communications. However by its very nature customer centricity is impossible for all customers. So which customers do you treat well?
It has to be the most profitable customers or at the very least customers who have the potential to be the most profitable.
Taking this approach is mutually beneficial:
• The organisation increases the profitability per customer as well as driving customer life time value with customers seeking more products and services
• The customer obtains a more tailored service, one that meets their rational and emotional needs
Just improving service levels will not necessarily be mutually beneficial by itself, it has to combined with targeted cross-selling and communication strategy. If done well it will also improve perceptions of the brand, done badly it will turn people off.
Although not all customers initially benefit, as with formula 1 eventually all product and service improvements trickle down to all.
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