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Communication and the post-2020 customer

Published on 04 Jun 2020

In a matter of months, the world changed. One of the most significant shifts resulting from the 2020 pandemic is the absolute necessity of providing services digitally. While customers may have to stay at home, they still need products, services and information, except now,  everything has to be delivered in a different way. 

As a result of this, according to McKinsey, we have “vaulted five years forward in consumer and business digital adoption in a matter of around eight weeks”.   

Companies that adjust quickly stand to benefit from what is essentially a massive shift in consumer behavior.  

Here are some insights from our digital gurus on the customer communication landscape post-2020: 

Brent Haumann

Brent Haumann

Managing Director, Africa

“The reality is – our customers have changed, therefore the customer experience (CX) we provide needs to change too.  Meeting customers where they are, empowering self-service and monitoring engagement in real-time –  are all essential to building a great post-2020 CX. 

Business messaging needs to take into account what people need the most. If it’s financial support – find a way to help customers save. If it’s emotional support, reach out with empathy and understanding.

And if 2020 has taught us anything, it’s the importance of being able to adapt quickly, in case we have to handle another shift of the same magnitude.”

Mia Papanicolaou

Mia Papanicolaou

COO, The Americas

“If we thought we were catering to a digital-savvy customer before, 2020 has shown us just how digital the world can really be when it’s the only form of engagement. 

This is a stressful time for everyone, and consumers are looking to brands to make their stressful lives easier.  

I believe companies should be doing everything possible to support their customers using digital processes and communication. This is what customers will remember.”

Ross Sibbald

Ross Sibbald

Commercial Director, Africa

“Email has once again proven itself to be the most effective business-to-consumer communication tool. When companies needed to get information through to their customers – they chose email. 

Email may not be the channel that inspires change (we’ll leave that to social media), but it will continue to be the channel that organizations use to conduct business with their customers. 

Why? 

It’s ubiquitous, messages can be highly personalized and information that is complex or lengthy can be presented in a customer-friendly way.”

James Hall

James Hall

Commercial Director, UK

“At the start of the coronavirus outbreak, a large number of companies turned to email as the channel of choice to reach out to customers. 

The result was a deluge of email from brands wanting to make contact and reassure customers of their efforts to return to business as usual. 

Many would expect that, in the midst of this increase in emails, email engagement statistics would change. They would be right.”

Dori-Jo Bonner

Dori-Jo Bonner

Account Strategist, Africa

“2020 Will forever be seen as the year that everything changed. 

For communicators, the shift in customer needs and behaviors has required changes to the tone, language and call-to-action that we use in our messaging.

People are looking for brands to offer guidance and assistance. This means marketing messages must be softened and companies need to show they care about people, not just about sales.”

Need help ensuring your post 2020 customer communications align with the new needs of your customers?

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