And then one day, it happened. Customers changed. How they make decisions changed. What they value and how they want to do business changed. The funny thing is…we didn’t. Now we can and a new generation of technologies and services make it possible to not only react but lead customer experiences moving forward.
To effectively compete in the digital economy, you are left with no choice; become customer-obsessed or lose! Every moment-of-truth counts when it comes to customer loyalty. For some, this paradigm shift will be easy. For many, you will have to re-think your business model.
No one will remember your failures, but everyone will remember your success. If they do bring up your failures and not your successes, question the value they bring into your world and move forward.
We live in a time when disruption is happening to us or it can happen because of us. Sometimes the past holds us back and sometimes we let fear undermine our ideal future. But, this is the time to change the future. Think about it…what would your future self tell you today? I believe that now’s the time to question everything. As such, rules can be broken giving way for iteration to evolve into innovation.
Whether you realize it or not, when you share an experience you have, whether it’s through a post, review, video, image, rant, praise, etc., it helps a stranger make a decision about what to do next.
Customers aren’t following the customer journey you designed because they’re too busy hacking it. No matter how much journey work you do, no matter how creative your marketing, no matter how responsive your website is, no matter how much technology you invest in, customers trust the experiences of others over your words aka branding and the path you’ve laid out for them.
In this short video, I share the rise of Generation C and how an era of connected consumerism created the perfect storm for digital Darwinism to accelerate. We also discuss how the future of marketing takes more than technology, it takes a philosophical shift to create meaningful and shareable experiences.
Digital Darwinism is claiming businesses everywhere. As technology and society evolve, leaders face the need to adapt or die. Doing so stars with rethinking what it takes to compete for market share by competing for relevance. However, executives do not know what they do not or choose not to know. In my book, you either compete or relevance or you don’t.
While I was in Paris at Le Web (see interviews with Skully’s Marcus Weller and Andela’s Jeremy Johnson), I met with the Vivendi team to discuss the state and future of digital transformation.
Digital Darwinism is a fate that threatens most organizations in almost every industry. Because of this, businesses not only have to compete for today but also for the unforeseeable future. Digital Darwinism is the phenomenon when technology and society evolve faster than an organization can adapt. There are many reasons for this of course. Every fabric of a company is strained due to internal and external influences. The challenge lies amongst the very leaders running the show today. Their mission and the processes and systems they support today may already be working against them.
Businesses today are met with unique challenges and opportunities that necessitate pause. For years, management models were developed to optimize the pursuit of business objectives. Processes were established and hierarchies, technologies and reporting systems supported them. Everything was business as usual until it wasn’t.
Nothing is permanent. As in life, things change. And so is true in the world of business. The models and practices that have been taught for generations are tested in a time when customer and employee behaviors and resulting expectations are evolving without official study, strategy and systematic transformation.
It’s everywhere. I live in Silicon Valley where many say that the terms disrupt and disruption have become buzzwords. Pundits believe that the word is losing its promise and impact through the acts and examples of entrepreneurs and businesses that misuse the word to describe intentions rather than associating it with a desired or natural effect.
In some of the startup meetings I attend for example, digital disruption is actually a stated business objective. Instead of “killing it” or “crushing it” many businesses are aiming now to disrupt it!
We are indeed witnessing what can be best described as the end of business as usual. With the closure or dwindling performance of businesses once regarded as too big to fail or with the rise of every new Occupy-like movement around the world, we are reminded of the grand chasm that exists between consumer values and the values of today’s businesses. What is becoming painfully obvious is that people everywhere are calling for change and they’re taking to the streets and also their smartphones, tablets, and popular social networks to demand attention.
Today’s leading companies are already becoming obsolete. Fortunately or unfortunately, they won’t know until it’s too late. In 10 years, 40% of the Fortune 500 was replaced. Irrelevance is only accelerating. It’s Digital Darwinism out here. #AdaptorDie!
Ignorance is bliss, until it’s not.
Technology…social, mobile, real-time, it’s changing the world. Customers are evolving into something new. They’re more connected, empowered, and demanding.
Brian Solis is a digital analyst, anthropologist, and also a futurist. In his work at Altimeter Group, Solis studies the effects of disruptive technology on business and society. He is an avid keynote speaker and award-winning author who is globally recognized as one of the most prominent thought leaders in digital transformation.
His most recent book, What's the Future of Business: Changing the Way Businesses Create Experiences (WTF), explores the landscape of connected consumerism and how business and customer relationships unfold in four distinct moments of truth. His previous book, The End of Business as Usual, explores the emergence of Generation-C, a new generation of customers and employees and how businesses must adapt to reach them. In 2009, Solis released Engage, which is regarded as the industry reference guide for businesses to market, sell and service in the social web.