Adopting a CCM strategy poses significant challenges for every company, but it is also an opportunity to radically change the way the company works and communicates. In this post, we will look at the five main advantages of a CCM approach.
Customer communication management (CCM) is a corporate strategy aimed at optimizing the creation, delivery, storage, and retrieval of outbound communications made by companies, whether analog or digital.
Implementing a CCM strategy requires specific platforms and software, which must be integrated into business processes, not limited to those related to the marketing department, in order to improve both communications to customers and those to business partners, suppliers, institutions, and regulatory authorities.
This is because adopting a CCM strategy within the company not only has advantages “outside,” but also “inside” the same organization, because it can make some processes more efficient, improving the final result. In addition, in a world marked by digital transformation, implementing a strategy of customer communication management can no longer be seen as optional.
It is a fact that the internet has entered the lives of all, changing them in a radical way. For example, consider how you buy an object today. While in a physical store, most consumers—80% of them—use their mobile phone to check the price, features, and comments on the product they want to buy. Or, think about the relationship between customers and companies and the large number of communication channels that have been opened thanks to digital technologies. Such channels have become strategically relevant for companies that want to reach new or existing customers.
Although according to Forrester, email is still the preferred means for 54% of consumers to contact a company, Microsoft notes that two out of three individuals use at least three channels to communicate with the customer service department. The research points out that 43% of millennials — the customers of the future — make their first contact with the company through a mobile device.
Such a situation clearly puts pressure on all companies which, in order to remain competitive in the market, must adopt a strategy that takes these changes into account and allows them to effectively manage communication with customers: this is the case of customer communication management.
However, implementing a CCM strategy requires addressing a series of difficult issues that involve different aspects of any business organization.
The challenges of CCM: technology, organization and people
The first challenge that a company must overcome is to choose software and platforms that provide all the digital tools essential to implement the CCM strategy at every level of the company. This choice is essential to achieve good results.
Moreover, you will also want support from your CCM provider in your decision making. This is also confirmed in a report by Forrester, according to which, when identifying the CCM platform to be adopted, it is important to choose a reliable and technologically advanced provider, which supports the company at every stage of the path toward a complete and correct digital transformation.
Doxee is the perfect example of a virtuous CCM provider and, it has been included in Forrester’s Now Tech as one of the 17 best global Customer Communication Management providers.
Returning to the challenges involved in adopting a customer communication management strategy within a company, secondly, we find the inclusion of CCM technologies in the company’s internal processes, which must take place in such a way that they are gradually integrated in how the company itself operates.
Finally, we must not forget the human component. The tools of customer communication management are designed to be used by employees who perform communications-related tasks. For this reason, employees must be made aware of these tools and platforms.
Not only that, but it is also necessary to devise an effective and comprehensive training course that provides the necessary technical skills and develops an educational approach that is the basis of a strategy of customer communication management.
These are just some of the issues that need to be taken into account when deciding to implement a CCM strategy.
Even though they’re certainly no small feat, they’re definitely worth it. Customer communication management offers unquestionable advantages to any company that decides to adopt it.
First advantage: realizing an omnichannel approach
Let’s start from a figure: 9 out of 10 consumers expect a consumer experience that integrates the many different communication channels that are available today.
This is why companies that want to remain competitive are starting to adopt an all-encompassing communication model. This is a marketing strategy that connects all the different channels of communication so that the customer can start, carry out, and conclude the purchasing process from any channel, starting from digital and ending with the physical channel or vice versa.
To guarantee this type of customer experience, it is necessary that the various communications (such as the offer of the product or service, the exchange of information about it, receipts, or tax documents) take place in a coordinated manner, avoiding unnecessary overlaps and repetition so as to intercept the customer with relevant content according to the phase of customer journey, for example by proposing a renewal or premium version of a product or service already purchased.
All of this can only be done by adopting a customer communication management strategy, which will enable a unified view of outgoing communications and the overall management of content, which can be diversified according to objectives and the type of customer to whom it is addressed.
Second advantage: no more brakes
Communication is a complex operation that involves many parts of an organization who manages different components: text content, graphics, implementation (such as printing), and those who manage the digital channels.
The problem is that these activities are often organized by department, vertically and this impacts the coherence of the different content, which must ultimately lead to a unified result.
Not only that. The traditional “compartmentalized” organization involves a series of frictions, which considerably slow down the different processes.
Some changes, whether to visual or graphic components, may require cross approval and inevitably impact the work of other departments, which are thus forced to adapt and perhaps even modify existing content.
Adopting a strategy of customer communication management can be an effective solution in these cases.
This is because implementing CCM technologies gives the company the ability to centralize the management and organization of different documents, allowing it to more easily verify the consistency between them, and facilitating more efficient relations between departments.
Thanks to customer communication platforms, it is possible to activate virtuous collaboration mechanisms. For example, designers can create templates that sales staff can use to quickly create projects. In doing so, it is also easier for them to follow the strategic directions set by the marketing department.
At the same time, customer experience experts can more easily monitor all commercial communication projects and ensure that they are meeting customer needs, while CCM specialists have the opportunity to oversee the entire process and ensure that data, content, and management criteria are respected and replicated.
In this way, the verification and approval procedures for corporate compliance can be made faster, especially when it comes to substantial changes.
Third advantage: a CCM strategy increases the efficiency
According to a report by McKinsey, most companies do not have an efficient document management strategy. For every dollar spent producing customer-facing documents, nine are spent on managing them. This means, as McKinsey points out, that even a modest investment in document production and management processes can have a significant positive impact in terms of financial results.
This is not surprising, given that customer communication management, as well as dematerialization, are processes that, if initiated in the context of a company’s digital transformation, can simplify its operation by reducing costs.
A centralized CCM strategy can guarantee a considerable return on investment because it:
1. reduces the cost of producing interactive documents by 50%;
2. saves $1.25 per document produced, thanks to online distribution;
3. reduces the time required to implement text changes by 85% with the assistance of the IT department;
4. guarantees a savings of 1,000 hours for the production of documents that can then be used to contact customers and promote their products and services.
The litmus test for adopting a customer communication management strategy is the fact that many companies are showing increasing interest in this approach.
According to recent research by Acute Market Reports, the CCM market is moving toward a period of steady growth. It is estimated that by 2026, the total value of the sector will reach $1.2 billion. By then, CCM technologies are expected to be used in new sectors of the economy, including financial services, insurance, e-commerce, retail, and the hotel sector.
Fourth advantage: a CCM strategy improves the customer experience
While 71% of consumers want the companies they do business with to remember their previous interactions, only 29% say they have it experience this regularly.
This means two things.
- The first is that the customer, who is now also a user, is increasingly demanding in his relationship with companies and the type of experience he expects to receive (for example, customers expect an immediate response to requests, at any time and from any device).
- The second is that there are expectations that are not met and this is not a factor to be underestimated. An unsatisfied customer is more likely to turn to a competitor for their next purchase.
In this sense, adopting a CCM strategy is essential in order not to disappoint customers and improve the customer experience offered.
Through the CCM platforms, it is possible to harmonize the different communication channels mentioned above, thus giving customers the feeling of being at the center of a coordinated and immersive consumer experience.
Not only that. CCM technologies make it easier to manage communications, giving companies the ability to customize them according to the characteristics of each recipient.
Moreover, personalization is a winning factor when it comes to customer retention, since, according to Accenture research, in 2017, 33% of users broke off relationships with a company because they did not consider the experience provided to be sufficiently personalized.
A CCM strategy makes it easy to modify the very structure of the document, which can be made more interactive, for example, and CCM technologies facilitate the creation of a strategic communication plan based on data for each consumer.
In addition, this data can be obtained in a simple way and at a relatively low-cost thanks to the implementation of new digital technologies, including those of customer communication management, which from this point of view are a driving force for all types of business.
Fifth advantage: a CCM strategy for a complete transformation
The last advantage of a CCM strategy is perhaps the most important.
Today, companies are facing an increasingly complex market context. Here, CCM is fundamental because it allows companies to create communication that puts the customer at the center of everything.
In other words, we abandon the traditional product-centric vision to embrace the “customer-centric” one, which is obviously more challenging but also more modern and stimulating.
Adopting a CCM strategy means giving a decisive boost to this type of transformation, which is the true and profound essence of digital transformation.
CCM allows you to combine a more sustainable and profitable business with a relentless drive to improve communication tools to ensure that the company stays competitive and customer-focused.