April 3rd, 2017 by Oren Smilansky

Organizations from all industries, and of all sizes, have been investing in digital experiences, but a study from IBM’s Institute for Business Value (IBV) indicates that many customers aren’t interested in engaging with companies via cutting edge methods and channels.

The study, titled “The Experience Revolution: Digital Disappointment–Why Some Consumers Aren’t Fans,” surveyed 600 executives in a range of industries, and compared their responses with those of 6,000 consumers. The findings suggest that, though executives are eager to roll out new tools and services, customers are, on the whole, more interested in getting fast, easy, and affordable results any way they can get them.  

70 percent of customers who tried to shop for new products using virtual reality, used interactive digital displays in physical stores, or interacted with a business with voice commands, found those experiences “disappointing.” The result is that they simply haven’t adopted them on an ongoing basis.

But executives, meanwhile, are failing to understand what it takes to get customers on board with innovation–notably, they are not factoring in generational differences and preferences. Only 38 percent of executives  thought that age would have an impact on how quickly customers would take to new digital experiences. But, while 24 percent of Millennials surveyed said they use mobile apps to locate products while shopping, for instance, only 8 percent of Baby Boomers said the same. Further, 70-80 percent of Boomers said that, thought they were aware of new CX initiatives, they hadn’t tried them because they simply were not interested.

“Companies have an opportunity to win and lose customers solely based on the quality of the experience they provide,” Robert Schwartz, global leader of strategy and design at  IBM iX, said in a statement. “It’s not enough to adopt a one-size-fits-all approach. Companies need to provide personalized and individualized experiences in order to authentically build their brands. With customers of certain demographics, this already matters far more than branded communications.”

To ensure that digital CX initiatives are welcomed by buyers, IBM’s IBV recommends:

  • Creating digital experiences to meet customer expectations (not those of the company);
  • Analyzing “root” motivations, desires, and pain points;
  • Making utility and simplicity the core values of digital CX transformation, and;
  • Designing marketing strategies to address specific customer needs.

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