This autumn, Customer Attuned carried out an international research study to find out what state B2B Companies want to be working in by 2018. A questionnaire of twelve critical strategies labelled as “The Golden Threads”, was sent to companies around the globe asking them to prioritise the strategies into their ‘wish list’, the resultswere compiled and here’s what they told us:

By 2018:

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  • Banking & Finance want to focus on key account management and organisational design
  • Manufacturing want to focus on acquisition, reflecting the impact of globalisation
  • Insurance sector showed a distinct profile of priorities towards people, brand and negotiating indicating the way the sector is dominated by broker relationships

“Our Business Model is such that that lead in time from first prospect meeting to Letter of Intent can be up to two years. It can then require a further two years to implement the new services & create the income stream. Thus it is vital for us to renew existing relationships and maximise up-sell/new service opportunities” – Financial Services, Senior Executive

Peter Lavers, Customer Relationship Director, said the results were interesting.

“Looking at how companies are performing today and comparing to where they hope to be performing in three years time, indicates that a lot of board rooms are going to have to start shifting their strategies now. It’s not always easy to recognise when to start the shift when dealing with daily operations, so this report serves as a guide for the board room to comprehend the task before them”.

Read the full report to see what senior executives across industries have said about priorities for their company and take it into the board room to sense check where your company is and if its on target to reach your desired state by 2018.

The Golden Threads – Strategic Priorities

This research’s aim is to explore which of the 12 golden threads are of most strategic importance in different sectors. They are ALL IMPORTANT, but each business needs to decide which of them will be defining characteristics of ITS OWN corporate DNA. The online survey listed 12 “desired states” of B2B customer management that could describe a B2B business in 2018. Respondents were asked to prioritise them and answer one open-ended question as to why the top priority was chosen.

Insight – Strategy – Plan – Implement – Measure

The major three conclusions from this report are:

  1. The top three priority golden threads should all be seen as crucial. There is a risk of a company being left behind if it fails to be at least on-par with good practice.
  2. The threats posed by competitors’ acquisition strategies and activities (which are top priority in some sectors & regions) must be taken seriously and responded to accordingly. Strategically this means either bettering their strategies if acquisition is also your primary aim, or countering their targeting with excellent loyalty building capabilities.
  3. Companies should strategically decide where they need to be in each aspect of Customer Management and consider the types of strategic objectives B2B companies should set themselves depending on their existing capability levels and their desired position

Interesting links:

About The Author

Customer Attuned

Customer Attuned is a boutique B2B Customer Experience Management consultancy, whose Directors and associates are innovators in their field that provide a number of core business analysis and improvement services.The B2B Customer Attuned Customer Management Capability Assessment tool contains c.350 “Good Practice” standards arranged around a model of business-to-business best practices. It provides organisations, with a prioritised three phased action plan to progressively improve critical relationships and results. Customer Attuned has a track record of delivering returns in B2B customer management combined with strengths in innovative customer-driven change is a winning formula in creating something new and exciting in the B2B sector. Clients include, Vodafone, eBECS, BT Business, Irish Life