In this guest post, CEO of Melbourne digital creative agency Butterfly, Liz McLean (pictured below), offers her stellar tips on getting any team to but into this whole customer experience journey thing…
Organisations of all sizes will struggle with misaligned objectives at some point. It may be that department heads are comfortable working in silos or objectives have been miscommunicated and misunderstood. CMOs must lead by example and rally the organisation around a common objective— great customer experience.
Focus on frictionless design
Marketers must fight age-old tendencies to create ‘cool’ looking products and shift their focus to the synergy between design and functionality, as it relates to customer experience. Frictionless design that customers don’t see or engage with, but rather ‘just works’, needs to be the focus. This should aid alignment of priorities and clearer lines of communication between marketing and IT teams.
IT teams have historically prioritised function over form, to the dismay of marketers. Marketers must shift their thinking, and instead promote collaboration with IT teams with a clear focus—creating an exceptional user experience through frictionless design. This focused objective will promote cross-team communication and innovation.
Appoint a CDO
CMOs can further promote innovation by championing the appointing of a CDO (chief digital officer). Globally, a PwC survey analysing 2,500 of the world’s largest businesses found companies employing a CDO rose from 6 per cent in 2006 to 19 per cent in 2016. Australia is leading the charge with 40 per cent of companies surveyed having a CDO.
To date, CIOs headspace for innovation has been stifled by needing to prioritise areas such as governance, control over required technologies, technical support and alignment of objectives. Appointing a CDO to take on some of these responsibilities will free up marketers and IT teams to push innovative thinking and R&D, adding direct value to their organisation’s bottom line.
The aforementioned role breakdowns are clear for enterprise-sized organisations, but can also be adjusted for SMEs and small businesses. The priority must be on clarifying the domains and objectives from the marketing, technology and digital standpoints within the organisation, and creating open lines of communication and collaboration to ensure these domains don’t function in isolation.
A report from Kaplan found that only “5 per cent of the work force understand the [company’s] strategy” and as a result, “9 of ten companies fail to execute strategy”. Without clear lines of communication and an established chain of command, teams will lose focus and deviate from the business’s objectives, resulting in wasted time and money.
Businesses should be unified in their core objective: providing the best possible customer experience. The key to successfully achieving this objective is having all departments and personnel understanding their role in working collaboratively towards reaching it. Start with an internal audit to ensure all departments are ‘on the same page’ and be open to workshopping solutions to eliminate any communication roadblocks.