According to Gartner, 89 percent of companies expect to compete mostly on the basis of customer experience by 2016. As customer experience becomes the top priority for B2B organizations, CMOs must take on a cross-functional role that influences all areas of a business, and examine new and unique marketing channels to ensure that a clear, compelling and consistent corporate message is infused throughout the customer journey.
But what about the company’s most important and influential marketing channel of all — its employees? As the company’s most consistent voice in the market, employees deliver the corporate message day in and day out. What’s scary is, a recent Gallup Poll found that only 9 percent of front line workers are able to articulate what their company stands for and what sets them apart from the competition. So, the question marketers must ask is: What messages are our employees sending?
This isn’t just alarming: It’s threatening the future growth of many companies. Before a corporate message can be infused throughout the customer experience, it must first be woven into the company’s DNA. To accomplish this, CMOs should reach across the aisle and strategically partner with human resources as well as leaders responsible for customer-facing areas of the business to implement a messaging-driven Organizational Change initiative targeting employees. The program should include disciplined internal communication training and education programs that, over time and through a series of learning methods, creates a cognitive connection and infuses the company’s vision, mission and story into the hearts and minds of employees at every level of the organization. The program should also help employees understand how the corporate message impacts business performance, and how to activate key messages in specific customer communication channels and conversations.
In addition to having a significant impact on business growth and the customer experience, a messaging-driven organizational change program also improves recruitment, onboarding and employee engagement, giving the company a distinct advantage in securing the best possible talent.
As the customer experience becomes the way companies differentiate themselves in the market, your employees can no longer be left out of the conversation. They will become the critical channel marketers must fully activate and utilize to ensure the company delivers a clear, compelling and consistent message throughout the customer journey.
Check out this video to learn how CMOs can capture greater ownership over the customer experience.