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What at the Top Three Digital Transformation Priorities?


Digital transformation is redefining customer experiences and expectations. More than ever customer experience (CX) is the battlefield where brands are competing – and it’s becoming just as critical for B2B companies as it is for B2C. (Click here to read, Is Your Brand Ready to Deliver on Customers’ Expectations?)

B2B companies that invest in CX reap the rewards of faster revenue growth, increased customer loyalty and purchase intent, and premium pricing.

The digital transformation journey can seem daunting, but the rewards are worth it. Numerous reports focus on digital transformation; in this post, we call out three priorities for brands to focus on in 2017. They aren’t new, but they are increasingly table stakes if you plan to proceed with your organization’s digital transformation:

Priority #1 | Customer Experience

A majority of companies recognize the critical role customer experience plays, but most do not actually make it a strategic priority. According to Accenture, “86 percent of B2B executives consider the customer experiences provided during sales and service interactions to be very important, and 41 percent put the customer experience at the top of their list of strategic priorities.”

According to Accenture, “86 percent of B2B executives consider the customer experiences provided during sales and service

interactions to be very important, and 41 percent put the customer experience at the top of their list of strategic priorities.”

B2B brands that place customers at the center don’t just grow, they thrive. Leading brands have recognized that CX drives growth and is essential for differentiation. Research from Bain & Company suggests: “Companies that excel at customer experience grow revenues 4-8% above their market.”


Research from Bain & Company suggests: “Companies that excel at customer experience grow revenues 4-8% above their market.”

Strategic Action: Articulate your brand’s vision and unique value proposition (and/or refresh it if there has been a major milestone reached or other factor).

Priority #2 | Employee Engagement

While a vision helps steer the brand, it is essential to start internally by defining how company culture aligns with delivering the right customer experience.

Attracting and retaining the right talent is critical, but improving customer satisfaction and loyalty starts by building a relationship with your employees. B2B brands should take a cue from one of the world’s most valuable brands. Angela Ahrends, senior vice president of retail at Apple, articulates it best: “Everyone talks about building a relationship with your customer. I think you build one with your employees first.”

The majority of employees in organizations across the U.S. are not engaged. The most common reasons are not holding a strong belief in the leadership team’s ability or its vision, being dissatisfied with their relationship with their manager, or feeling an absence of purpose aligned with the company. According to Dale Carnegie, companies with engaged employees outperform those without – by up to 200%.

According to Dale Carnegie, companies with engaged employees outperform those

without – by up to 200%.

Strategic Action: Invest in your employees. It’s critical to provide employees with the guidance and tools to deliver an end-user experience that is positive and differentiating. Deliver these tools such as sales enablement tools during workshops, summits or retreats that treat your employees how you expect them to handle your customers.

Priority #3 | Content Strategy and Creation

Content marketing is a primary business asset. SalesForce conducted research that found that “more than three-quarters of marketers agree that content marketing is core to their business.” When leveraged right, content is a valuable asset contributing to building a brand since it holds the potential to emotionally connect an organization with its customer and thereby propel business growth – and even the discovery of its next new employee.

When leveraged right, content is a valuable asset contributing to building a brand since it holds the potential to emotionally connect an organization with its customer and

thereby propel business growth.

Creating content for the various channels across traditional, digital and social is critical, but it must be tied to a strategy that tracks back to support your organization’s business objectives.

While it’s important to have fresh content that matches up with customers’ needs at distinct phases of the customer journey, it’s important that it drives value and tracks back to support the solutions, services or products offered by your company. Content developed by engaged employees is even more impactful.

Strategic Action: Take the time to create a content strategy that supports your organization’s overall objectives and tracks back to specific solutions. Once a strategy is in place, having guest contributors such as customers or employees will spark dialogue and engagement – both internally and externally.

Download our free e-book,

Cultivating Customer Experience: Three Strategic Imperatives For Bridging the CX Gap


About C.E.K. & Partners

C.E.K. & Partners is a brand and strategy firm that the world’s most notable brands – across payments, financial services, health care and manufacturing – depend on when they seek market research, brand strategy, thought leadership and brand management. We develop programs that build brands and meaningfully connect them to customers in order to accelerate business growth.

Building a brand is an investment that requires energy and expertise – that’s why we’re here to help. Contact us at carolyn@cekpartners.com or +1.404.345.6447.


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