Customer Engagement

How Mobile Technology Is Driving Engagement

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Several powerful forces have been pushing, glacier-like but steadily, toward making engagement the same kind of movement in the U.S. as is now developing in Great Britain. The first impetus was research that started coming out of academia in the U.S. and in Great Britain in the 1990s indicating a link between customer and employee engagement, including work produced by Gallup and the Forum for People Performance Management and Measurement at Northwestern University’s Medill School. Another factor was the work of Frederick Reichheld and his important book The Loyalty Effect, and the concept of net-promoter scores. The emergence of customer relationship management (CRM) software and Big Data have provided even more of an impetus, as organizations can now more clearly track actual customer behavior. Based on years of watching the emergence of engagement, I’d have to say that, until recently, I thought that social media was the tipping-point. Organizations can now actually track what was once completely invisible: word-of-mouth. I thought the ability of customers to define a brand would be enough to make organizations finally understand that they will perform better in the long run not just by focusing on making promises, but on keeping them. Certainly the concept of engagement has picked up steam over the past few years.

If all of these factors were not enough to turn engagement into a movement, as the British are now calling it, mobile technology is providing probably the most powerful driving force of all. Every top CEO (and other executives) now personally experiences the concept of engagement every time they look at their smart phone to connect with an organization of any kind. They can personally experience how their own behaviors are affected by the experience they encounter in a way that makes it easier to visualize how people might engage with their own organizations.

Engagement U. in Denver, April 14-16, will address this subject head on. It will feature an early leader in mobile technology, Bob Gold, founder of Gold Mobile, who headlines a plenary session titled Are We at the Tipping Point for Enterprise Engagement?, as well as a more practical session on applying mobile to your own organization’s objectives. Register here.

A recent article in Entrepreneur magazine, Why Customer Engagement is the Future of E-Commerce, offers good examples of how customer engagement is emerging as a critical business strategy. Readers of this blog will note the importance the author places on having a content strategy, as discussed in one of our recent posts.


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