Happy Friday! ‘This week in CX’ brings you the latest roundup of industry news.

This week, we’re looking at consumer spending plans this holiday season, the divide on who’s using AI, and cases of counterfeit ChatGPT.

Key news

  • McKinsey and Salesforce has announced a new collaboration to accelerate the introduction of trusted generative AI for sales, marketing, commerce, and service. The collaboration will pair Salesforce’s AI Cloud and trust architecture with McKinsey’s software, data assets, and tech implementation capabilities. It will bring hyper-personalised value to every customer interaction, at scale and speed. 
  • The majority of people (68%) across all age groups, now prefer to receive advice and support on their water bills via email. The Affordability and the Water Sector from Aptumo, explores consumer preferences when it comes to water billing. In the report’s survey of 2,000 UK billpayers, digital billing was the most preferred form of communication, followed in second place by postal which was favoured by 54% of respondents.
  • Amperity has been selected by Virgin Atlantic to help unify, manage, and activate all of the travel company’s digital and transactional customer data. As part of its ongoing data transformation, the travel company will use Amperity’s CDP to create a personalised ecosystem, improve the digital experience, deliver personalised customer experiences and drive revenue growth.
  • Apple have announced its first-ever carbon neutral products in the all-new Apple Watch lineup. Innovations in design and clean energy have driven dramatic reductions in product emissions of over 75 percent for each carbon neutral Apple Watch. This milestone marks a major step in the company’s journey toward its ambitious Apple 2030 goal to make every product carbon neutral by the end of the decade. Check out this awesome video made by Apple to innovately showcase their sustainability efforts:

Only 9% of consumers plan to spend more this holiday season  

Only 9% of consumers reported that they plan to spend more this holiday season according to a survey by Gartner. A survey of 302 consumers conducted in June 2023 revealed that 28% of respondents plan to spend less this holiday season than in 2022. 63% of consumers plan to spend the same amount this year as last year. 

19% of consumers will begin their shopping in October, 29% will start in November, and only 10% will wait to begin shopping until December. Another 19% of consumers reported that they have been shopping year-round, up from 16% in 2022. This is a trend that will continue to grow. 

In fact, Gartner predicts 30% of consumers will shop for winter holiday gifts year-round by 2026.

Market same-day services, not just free shipping

Free shipping is no longer a differentiator, but a consumer expectation. Behind price, holiday shoppers noted free shipping (45%) as one of the top drivers in influencing a purchase decision. These were followed by value (35%), promotions or deals (33%), selection of gifts (24%), and ratings and reviews (17%) as the top reasons influencing a holiday gift purchase.

Though the majority of consumers plan to maintain most of their online shopping behaviours this holiday season, only 16% reported that they’ll shop more online than in-store in 2023, compared to 21% last year. Retailers with physical stores should market more than free shipping; Almost one in three consumers intend to utilise hybrid, same-day delivery or expedited shipping services for their holiday shopping needs. 

For younger consumers, compete on ESG progress

Younger consumers are more likely to prioritise a company demonstrating social purpose. Among winter holiday shoppers, 13% of consumers selected an environmental, social and governance (ESG) factor as the most important factor when selecting a gift. For younger consumers, factors such as the gift being locally made or from a brand owned by a member of a historically under-represented group are more important than access to expedited shipping. 

The generational AI divide reveals who’s actively using the technology

Salesforce have released Generative AI Snapshot Research: The AI Divide, a survey of more than 4,000 people across the United States, UK, Australia, and India. The research shows that 49% of people have used generative AI, with over one-third of these users tapping into the technology daily and planning to use it even more. However, the data also shows that half of all people have never used the technology, and 64% of them would use it more if it was safe/secure. 

According to the research, generative AI users are a young, engaged, and confident group of “super-users,” meaning they use the technology frequently and believe they are well on their way to mastering it.

  • 65% of generative AI users are Millennials or Gen Z, and 72% are employed. 
  • Nearly 6 in 10 users believe they are on their way to mastering the technology.
  • 70% of Gen Z report using the technology and 52% of them trust the technology to help them make informed decisions.

And, users aren’t slowing down anytime soon — 52% say their usage of generative AI is increasing compared to when they first started.

In contrast, non-users are older and display a significant lack of engagement with the technology. They report low familiarity with generative AI and are skeptical of its impact.

  • 68% of non-users are Gen X or Baby Boomers.
  • 88% are unclear how generative AI will impact their life.
  • 40% say they aren’t familiar enough with the technology and 32% say the technology is not useful for them.

49% of participants fooled by counterfeit ChatGPT apps  

Beyond Identity has published the results of its recent research into the various tactics hackers use to infiltrate systems, steal sensitive data, and utilise generative AI technology to automate intricate processes.

The survey has shed light on the alarming effectiveness of ChatGPT-based scams and highlighted ways for individuals and businesses to safeguard against fraudulent messages, unsafe apps, and password breaches.

Participants were presented with various schemes and asked if they would be susceptible and, if not, to pinpoint the reasons for their scepticism. 

  • 39% admitted they could fall prey to at least one phishing message
  • 49% indicated they could be tricked into downloading a counterfeit ChatGPT app
  • 13% confessed to using AI for password generation.

As part of the survey, ChatGPT created phishing emails, text messages, and social media posts, and participants were tasked with distinguishing which ones seemed credible. Among the 39% who admitted vulnerability to at least one of the options, the most prevalent scams were found in social media posts (21%) and text messages (15%). For those who were cautious about all the messages, the most notable red flags included suspicious links, peculiar requests, and unusually high sums of money solicited.

While 93% of the survey respondents hadn’t personally encountered information theft from an unsafe app in their real-life experiences, 49% were deceived when attempting to distinguish the genuine ChatGPT app from six authentic imitation alternatives. Intriguingly, individuals who had previously fallen prey to app fraud were notably more susceptible to doing so once more.

Thanks for tuning into CXM’s weekly roundup of industry news. Check back next Friday for the latest updates of the week!

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