What’s Standing in the Way of B2B Companies Providing A Great Customer Experience?

June 15, 2022

This article is included in these additional categories:

B2B | Business of Marketing | Customer Experience | Customer-Centric | Data-driven | Industries | Internal Collaboration

Fewer than 1 in 5 (18% of) B2B companies rate their customer experience as excellent, although it’s true that another 54% believe that their overall customer’s experience with their firm is above average, according to a report [download page] from Ascend2 in partnership with The Pedowitz Group.

Still, everyone wants to get into that “excellent” bucket. So what’s stopping them?

As part of the report, the survey asked more than 500 marketing, sales and customer success executives to identify their top challenges in providing an exceptional customer experience.

The top two responses across each function were lack of communication between teams and misaligned efforts and goals between teams. These often go hand in hand, as alignment is a top priority that needs to be addressed in order to improve communication between teams.

Nonetheless, this clearly speaks to the importance of alignment in establishing a leading customer experience. Indeed, separately, respondents said that the top benefit of aligning the efforts, strategies and goals of marketing, sales and customer success teams is to improve the customer experience. Consequently, one of the greatest consequences of the misalignment of these teams is a poor customer experience.

Beyond team alignment, the three functions had differing views on challenges to providing an exceptional customer experience. For marketers, inadequate or inaccurate data is the 3rd-biggest obstacle, while for sales it’s the lack of a unified view of the customer. Customer success professionals, for their part, point to ineffective leadership as their third-largest obstacle.

Marketers Worry About Data

It’s not too surprising to see data quality cited by marketers at a greater rate than the other teams, as it was a recurring theme in the study. Marketers said that improving data quality is their second-leading objective for improving revenue growth in the year ahead, citing this at a greater rate (39%) than both sales (34%) and customer success (31%) teams. Moreover, when asked about the benefits of aligning the three teams, marketers pointed to improved use of data (38%) in greater numbers than did their sales (34%) and customer success (31%) peers.

This reflects an environment in which marketers are relying on customer data to make their decisions, and often feeling that they don’t have the quality data necessary.

How Aligned Are Teams?

The study indicates that marketing teams are more confident in their organizational alignment than others. For example, while 36% of marketers surveyed said that the efforts, strategies and goals of the marketing, sales and customer success teams at their organization were “fully aligned,” only 21% of customer success professionals agreed. And while 77% of marketers agreed that their organization is currently working toward full alignment of the teams, fewer customer success (68%) and sales (63%) professionals agreed.

Finally, two-thirds (66%) of marketers said they have insight into data from finance that allows them to make better decisions about driving revenue, whereas only around 6 in 10 sales (61%) and customer success (57%) professionals felt the same way.

Read more by downloading the study here.

About the Data: The results are based on a March survey of 507 marketing, sales and customer success professionals in the US operating in the B2B space for businesses generating at least $50 million in revenue annually.

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