These days, marketers and other business leaders across industries are asking themselves the same question: How do we keep pace in the age of Amazon?
The digital behemoth and its ilk are driven by an adaptability that defies traditional company structure. Instead of functioning according to rigid corporate hierarchies, big digital players and small startups alike follow an agile approach, which prioritizes continuous development over perfect design, and transparency over departmental silos. In this model, customer demands can be met faster and more effectively than ever before.
This approach is challenging traditional businesses to evolve — or be left behind. That’s where it pays to put the customer experience in charge.

The problem: Keeping pace

For enterprises, adaptability is creating an unprecedented challenge to traditional operating models. Last year, 7,000 brick-and-mortar stores closed. And big names were not immune to closures, with longtime national retailers like GameStop and RadioShack announcing broad closings of retail locations. These store closures don’t signal the end of brick-and-mortar, but rather highlight the consequences of de-prioritizing the customer experience and resistance to change. In the case of RadioShack, for instance, the store’s 2017 closings were the direct consequence of a business strategy that failed to keep pace on the ecommerce front and overlooked strategic, customer demand-driven pricing strategies.

RadioShack’s trajectory isn’t unique. Across industries, companies are seeing traditional methods eroded by digital enterprises that have their finger on the pulse of the consumer. For companies resistant to this, it’s only going to get worse.

The solution: Put CX in the driver's seat 

For enterprises rooted in tradition, the mandate is clear: Adapt and evolve. But what’s the best strategy to get there?

The answer is to, first, make sure someone owns the strategic initiative. Right now, this point person doesn’t exist in most companies, and that’s where customer experience professionals have an opportunity to really take charge.

In our recent study of customer experience professionals, 61% of those surveyed reported that their company considers adaptability to be a central business priority. But our study also reveals there’s not a clear consensus about who is leading the push toward greater adaptability. While 28% of respondents said responsibility lies with the CEO, others look to marketing (23%) or IT (20%) to lead the charge. Twenty-three percent of respondents said nobody is leading the adaptability push at their organization.

Continue reading the full article in Marketing Insider.