Companies are using a plethora of technologies to get closer to their customers in order to drive brand awareness and loyalty.  Technological innovations have the potential to make customer relationships more seamless, connected, and personal. However, it is essential to remember that customers also crave an experience not driven solely by technology — but one that incorporates human interaction. Providing the tailored experiences that combines both technology and the human element is ideal. There are four key ways businesses can do this:

  • 1. Customer collaboration Customer feedback is key when it comes to striking the right balance between technology and the human touch. It will take time to learn what your customers consider appropriate and what they will tolerate when it comes to things like customer service, sales messaging, loyalty communications, and data gathering. But work with your customers to figure it out and make it a collaborative process. 
     
  • 2. Experience control It is important to give customers options. Not everyone is going to be comfortable using their mobile app to engage in a dialogue with a brand. Some of us prefer to do things online; some prefer to speak to an actual person. Your customers don’t all look alike, so don’t treat them like they do. 
     
  • 3. Complexity factor  Every channel is different, every experience is personal and every need will have varying levels of complexity. Technology gives us the ability to collect a unified view of the customer in a more multi-dimensional way through data insights, stated channel preferences or additional attributes you’ve captured over time in their profile to help make sure the right experience is delivered.
     
  • 4. Organizational responsibility  Delivering a great product or service is not enough — creating a positively memorable consumer experience is where the sustainable competitive advantage lies. A good place to start is with employees. Research indicates that a highly engaged employee will, more often than not, lead to a highly engaged customer. 

The smart, data-driven possibilities that technology provides, combined with a thoughtful human side, will strike the balance that drives brands towards building real and lasting relationships with their most valued customers.