Points of View

Digital Natives: Rethinking Trusted Consumer Engagements

Dec 22, 2015

The rise of Digital Natives – consumers who know only the digital experience – is giving rise to the requirement for personalization to be empathetic, a task foreign to many enterprise brands.


In this session of the #CXforum, we sat down to discuss this topic with Dennis DeGregor of Hewlett Packard Enterprise. Dennis serves as the Global Group Executive for Enterprise Customer Services, and plays a key role in defining the technologies and processes that are used to shape digital trust and customer experiences for the HPE brand.


Our conversation drove right to the core of a significant challenge facing many CMOs today: understanding, and engaging, with digital natives – consumers who have grown up in the digital age. From a service provider and enterprise brand perspective, digital natives and way they conduct their “consumer” business (increasingly omnichannel, increasingly mobile) is impacting both the processes and technology required to sell, market, and support their products. More than just a shift in demographics, what we’re seeing here is a shift in consumer expectations and a reworking of what it means to create digital and brand trust.



A few key themes from our conversation:


Changing Engagement Patterns: Online transactions are increasingly split between high-volume “self-serve” (often digital mobile) and low-volume “human interactions” (increasingly complex over voice or video). While self-serve is increasingly handled by automated processes, the skill level, and empathy, of the customer support rep is supported by automation.


Analytics: Advances in speech and unstructured data can allow more contextual information to be gain from customer interactions, and used by customer service agents to deliver anticipatory, proactive support leveraging “meaning-based business rules”.


The Issue of Risk: The faster data moves, the more risk is injected in the system. Blended machine-human support systems can greatly reduce risk and help reinforce digital and brand trust.


Customer Engagement: Consumers have a wealth of information sources available, and are looking for a different type of engagement. Traditional CRM systems were designed to support Brand to Consumer engagement, while Digital Natives often operate Consumer to Brand. In-memory computing technologies will be critical to delivering high-touch, real-time support.


Enabling Digital Trust: Digital Natives require three key items for brand loyalty: Transparency between the consumer and brand, Trust in the product and the process, and Technology that is secure and enables a greater overall experience.


CRM and #IoT Challenges: There is a growing gap between how a brand views itself and how the consumer views the brand. This can also be seen in the gap between the CMO and the CIO as brands move faster than their infrastructure. CMOs must focus on closing the customer gap, refocus their CRM solutions from push to pull, and leverage #IoT (including the Internet of Things, People, Places, Commerce, and Information) to drive personalized services.