Your Customers Deserve and Expect a Connected Experience

Your customers’ connected experience is taking place on their laptops, desktops, tablets, smartphones and game consoles, and now it’s expanding to their cars, watches and glasses. The connected experience is composed of sites, apps, visual design, geo-location, posts, reviews, photos, videos, gameplay, search and interactions with dozens of social media platforms.

As organizations struggle to move at the speed of their customers, four common concerns are voiced:

  • “I need to service my customer” rather than “I need an app.”
  • The connected experience is our customers' expectation.
  • An adaptive content strategy is essential to success.
  • Justification, ROI and measurement are a priority.

Servicing the Customer

Business stakeholders are telling us that they need to focus on customers' needs and experience in order to resolve debates on the internal digital direction and strategy. Renewed focus on customer behavior, audience research and the customer journey ensure that customer needs are understood. These inputs serve as the guideposts from which decisions are made.

"Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value." Albert Einstein

The Connected Experience

The term “mobile” doesn’t express the real nature of experience challenges. "Omni-channel experience" or "connected experience" have emerged as the industry terms-du-jour. To truly understand this new experience paradigm, companies need to understand the functional context of their users, including the environmental, device and situational contexts. 

The debate about whether to build apps or HTML solutions continues to perplex organizations, but we often find this to be beside the point. A recent article in Business Insider details differences in the distribution, monetization, platform power and network effects for each solution. But in the here-and-now, taking a technology-agnostic approach to solving the connected experience challenge based on the customer, business and technology needs is key.

Adaptive Content Strategy

There is also confusion about how content strategy relates to the proliferating number of devices. For example, Cennydd Bowles’ article about the “content out” philosophy questions how content can be separated from design, without changing its meaning. Taking an adaptive content approach to design decisions that incorporates both design and content in the context of the customer’s experience seems the right path. Content-as-a-service is a foundational element of a successful responsive design and server-side component (RESS) approach. 

Justification and Metrics

An article by Luke Wroblewski looks at justification and the metrics associated with responsive design, and the impact is positive. Results from Time Inc. and other responsively redesigned sites show big increases in conversion, revenue and page views. As more organizations adopt a holistic approach to delivering a connected experience to their customers, you can expect that they too will see similar increases in engagement.

Take Away: What is new is old and what is old is new once again.

 

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Mark Hewitt