How Customer Expectations Pressure Companies
Thanks in large part to technology advances, enterprises are facing increasing challenges when it comes to meeting customer expectations, according to a recent survey from Lithium Technologies. With its real-time nature and its ability to connect customers directly with brands in a public forum, social media has given rise to a new consumer—one who expects responses immediately and demands a higher level of service than ever before from brands. At the same time, more start-ups are introducing disruptive technology and market ideas to provide customers with new and affordable purchase options, and that puts even more pressure on traditional companies. "The consumer is forever changed," says Rob Tarkoff, president and CEO of Lithium Technologies. "Social media and the rise of nontraditional Web-based entrants into established industries have evolved their expectations. Consumers use digital channels to find and share information, reviews and insider tips. At the same time, they are using those channels to suggest improvements and sometimes shame brands into solving their problems. Business leaders are taking note of what this means to their image and bottom line, and [they are] rushing to find innovative ways to adapt." More than 310 corporate executives took part in the research, which was conducted by Harris Poll.