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What Plato Can Teach CMOs About Customer Experience

Steve Olenski
Master Principal Sales Architect

Customer Experience (CX) continues to be a top priority for major brands. In a report published by Accenture (“Digital Transformation in the Age of the Customer”), “improving customer experience” was listed as a top priority for the companies surveyed. 

That should come as no surprise to anyone. 

But what does Plato have to do with it? 

Glad you asked.

Before I get to the connection between someone who was born in 428 BC and modern day CMOs, however, I want to share some interesting and intriguing findings of a recent study. 

The Human Touch

In this world of Artificial Intelligence and Virtual Reality and bots and other mechanical (Read: Non Human) ways and means to market a given product, it would appear that there is still a place for us homo sapiens.

Consumers spend, on average, twice as much when they have been assisted by a staff member across all sectors. 

That finding, does the one below, comes from a study of more than 25,000 North American consumers on their experiences throughout their buying journey, from their decision to visit the store to the in-store experience to their feelings post purchase. 

Average spending increased nearly four times when the consumer was engaged by both staff and the brand’s website.

And browsing a brand's site while in store alone can be very beneficial as well as results showed that consumers spend, on average, 2.2 times more when they visit the brand’s website while at the store. 

Just make sure your in-store experience and pricing and so on matches your online please. 

Paging Plato

The philosopher Plato once said "Human behavior flows from three main sources: desire, emotion, and knowledge." In its most simplest of translations and context this applies directly and unequivocally ton consumers. 

Think about it. 

Desire. Someone has a desire to buy your product. 

Emotion. Without question the CX a consumer receives - especially in-person, should illicit positive emotions. 

Knowledge. According to one source, an average consumer does not make a purchase before consulting 10.4 sources, which typically cover in-store visits, search engines, and business websites. In other words, they come armed with knowledge on not only your product but your competitor's as well. 

So a consumer's behavior comes directly from these 3 sources. I'm sure Plato wasn't thinking of a guy researching the best long underwear to buy but be that as it may there is no denying these 3 factors play a vital role in the CX and ultimate path to purchase. 

And yes this absolutely applies to both B2C and B2B CMOs and brands of the world. 

CMO & CX - Perfect Together?

CMOs now have the opportunity to step into orchestrating the whole customer experience across many different functional departments as well as mastering many different customer engagement channels along with devices and assorted technologies, data and analytics. But to become the “general manager” of the overall customer experience - to launch and drive a market-oriented management of customer engagement - means most CMOs will need to acquire new skills or to hire accordingly.

Download Should the Chief Marketing Officer Oversee the Whole Customer Experience?  from Constellation Research and Oracle Marketing Cloud and learn the ten challenges to a CMO leading the Customer Experience and a whole lot more. 

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