Generally speaking, paradoxes are almost always worth a closer look. To wit: finding new customers today has never been easier, but retaining customers over the long run has never been harder. How did the time-honored rules of customer success become obsolete? Why do top-down marketing models based on demographics look more like dodo birds and dinosaurs with every passing fiscal quarter?
The catalyst prompting this seismic shift in consumer behavior did not exist at the turn of the century, and within two decades has become something many people say they cannot imagine living without. As you probably can guess, the hero of this saga (or villain, depending on your perspective) is the almighty smartphone. Over 1.5 billion smartphones will be sold globally this year, and penetration among all U.S. adults is now at an all-time high of 77%, up from 35% as recently as 2011 (Source: Pew Research Center).
The trend among young adults is even more striking—94% of Americans aged 18-29 own a smartphone, and 39% of that group report they are online “almost constantly.”
This dynamic is the stuff of nightmares for C-level executives in major B2C enterprises and financial services companies: it’s midnight—do you know what your customers are searching for online RIGHT NOW?
The advent of the smartphone era, when coupled with global availability of mobile high-speed Internet access, means no consumer ever has to delay gratification when it comes to their needs and wants.
(Loyalty may not be dead, but apparently it’s taking a very long holiday and did not respond when asked for comment.)
Companies must acknowledge the painful reality that even their most committed, long-term customers are only a couple of swipes away from becoming their competitors’ newest sales leads. Switching costs are vanishing. In this chaotic environment there is only one path to success: accurately anticipating your customers’ needs before they decide to ask Google or Amazon and take preemptive action to close the sale. Snooze and you will undoubtedly lose.
This is what we do at Cerebri AI. We connect the dots and make predictions about what your customers are ready to buy and the best way to make sure they buy it from you. Here’s the really good news: the key ingredient in this new recipe of customer success is the sum total of every digitally recorded interaction between a company and its customers.
At Cerebri AI our software product, called Cerebri Values, extracts previously unknown or unseen patterns of behavior as a basis for predictions that provide a competitive advantage. And we do it using artificial intelligence and machine learning, another technological breakthrough that is radically reshaping the economic landscape. Machine learning predicting human behavior – yet another paradox worth a closer look.