This IDC Perspective is a definitive guide to the future of customers and consumers (FoCC) for CIOs. It's designed to help CIOs and senior IT leaders understand what the future of customers and consumers is, why it matters, what roles senior IT leaders must play, and the key actions they must take in preparing to help drive "empathy at scale" for their enterprises. As competition for customers intensifies and competitors expand product and service offerings, finding, retaining, and monetizing customers become increasingly difficult and customers are the battleground for success or failure. Businesses must go beyond merely satisfying customers to engaging them by focusing on providing customer experiences that are rooted in technology and data-enabled empathetic relationships — the future of customers and consumers.
"Pursuing the future of customers and consumers requires planning, coordination, and a systematic approach since customer empathy embodies a rapidly evolving mix of culture, people, technologies, and events," says Marc Strohlein, adjunct research advisor with IDC's IT Executive Programs (IEP). "CIOs and LOB executives must agree on frameworks, approaches, and road maps to ensure consistently superior, differentiated experiences."