Over this past decade the shift to a customer-centric business model has grown in popularity. A 360 degree view of your customer has become the holy grail of businesses all over the world. This is a lot easier through platforms like Salesforce.
What is the 360 view of the customer?
At its core, Salesforce Customer 360 is a simple idea. Develop your business to have a 360 degree view of your customer. This means that your business and your employees have access to the entire history of a customer’s interaction with your business. From marketing insights and sales pitches to finance details and account activity, a holistic view of a customer should be available to every touch point in your business.
As the world becomes more data-driven and markets become more competitive, the customer has become the key stakeholder of the business. Industries now have the ability to build and process all the data they receive on a daily basis. Statistics have shown that using this data to develop a customer-centric, company culture can have a quantifiable effect in the success of your business. The Temkin Group found that companies that earn $1 billion annually can expect to earn, on average, an additional $700 million within 3 years of investing in customer experience
The goal of having a 360 degree view of the customer is to create for them a personalised experience. This means creating an experience that adapts to each individual need of a customer rather than a one-size-fits-all approach . For example, creating a marketing campaign that targets what specific people need is more effective than a generic approach. Or knowing a customer’s past history when dealing with your sales team will allow you to know what issues they had before and how to avoid those issues. Know your customers preferences and adapt your proposed solutions to those preferences.
A complete 360 degree view of a customer can allow your business to create a frictionless, highly personalised experience that your customers will value.
How do you create a 360 view of your customers?
Our approach to this challenge is in 2 key ways. Creating a change in mindset and implementing the technology to uphold this change in mindset. First and foremost, a shift in company mindset is needed. This means putting yourself in your customer’s shoes to work out what experience they would like rather than the other way around. Every decision should be made with the customer’s perspective in mind. This means using the data of your customers collected by the Sales teams when developing a marketing strategy or vice versa. A new focus should be on becoming more customer-centric at every opportunity.
This data can be collected in a wide range of ways. Salesforce Einstein can predict when your customer is most likely to open an email, based on history. Marketing automation can predict next steps to nurture prospects. Salesforce telephony services can track the most common words a particular customer uses when closing a deal. All of this data needs to be engaged with when deciding on an approach to dealing with a customer
Business processes should reflect this approach to customer data. Examples include creating business teams from different departments should work together to solve customer problems, and developing business strategies that are from previous customer interactions. Collaboration should become interdepartmental, data should be accessible from everywhere in the business and success should be defined by the customers experience.
The second factor in developing your business to have a 360 degree view of your customers is to integrate the supporting technology that makes this possible. Salesforce acquired Mulesoft in 2018 with the goal to connect your business clouds, your 3rd party data silos and your legacy data sources together. The first way this can be done is with Salesforce’s Customer 360 data manager. This connects your Salesforce clouds into one easy to manage user interface. With all your business records on one system you can track, forecast and manage your data to reveal powerful insights about your customers from all potential angles.
Outside of business CRM system, Saleforce has also made connecting data silos even easier. 89% of IT leaders report data silos are inhibiting digital transformation initiatives. By acquiring Mulesoft, Salesforce have sought out the expertise of the industry leading API platform to help businesses manage their data silos using APIs. APIs are a robust way to avoid building custom code. They connect 3rd party systems like accounting software or analytic software rather than building those software from scratch within your internal system. Before APIs, custom code was used to build internal software to connect disparate data silos. As your business grows, a system built on custom code alone can become fragile, difficult to use and expensive to maintain. Using APIs, it has become easier than ever to manage your external data silos and your legacy sources, even from within Salesforce. Mulesoft’s accelerator means this is now 3x faster than ever before.
Moreover, once a software is integrated with your Salesforce you can use Salesforce to analyze the data to provide powerful insights.
What are the benefits?
Now that you know the what and the how of Salesforce’s 360 degree view you might wonder as to why. An update of company mindset and a digital transformation can seem like a daunting task for your business to undertake. Change can be difficult for even the most open-minded and eager of businesses with investments of time and money to put forward. However, this transformation’s benefits can and will heavily outweigh the pain of engaging in this task.
As discussed above, a personalised experience is widely considered as the future of business. Statistics back this up: 67% of customers have said they would pay more for a great experience. Even more strikingly, 80% of customers say the experience a company provides is as important as its products and services. And it makes sense. A customer’s experience with your company is your greatest brand ambassador. People have become more demanding and the choice in every industry has become greater. A personalised customer experience will make you stand out. Customers will spend more time and money into a business that they believe caters to their individual needs.
Aside from contented customers the impact on your business can be exponential. Integrated systems allow your employees to extract the information they need quickly, efficiently and from anywhere in the business. This improves the productivity of your employees and allows them to focus on the most important part of your business – your customers.
Similarly, a connected business can use the extra data they collected to glean intelligent insights. These insights can help generate targeted and effective strategies, be it in marketing, sales or service departments. They can then use Salesforce to present these strategies or even share them with their colleagues from anywhere in your business
Salesforce Customer 360 has made it easier than ever to create a 360 degree view of your customer. By developing the technology and the mindset needed to adapt your business, Salesforce Customer 360 allows you to connect your business, improve your productivity and satisfy your customers.
Trigg Digital are a Salesforce consultancy with 50+ years of experience in helping businesses adapt to changing circumstances. If you want to find out more about how to develop a 360 degree view of your customer using Salesforce please go to our contact page.
Find out more about Salesforce 360 degree view with their playbook