CQ report highlights the financial benefits of customer centricity. In 2016, UK companies will spend close to £10bn on customer insight, social media listening, online surveys and feedback forms – all in pursuit of unlocking growth.
But while its right that brands prioritise collecting customer insight data, it’s not the end of the story. To survive, brands need to realise that it is customer understanding, not just listening that creates the critical advantage.
We have long believed that companies that ‘get’ their customers outperform those that don’t, and that growth starts with asking not what the customer can do for the company, but what the company can do for the customer.
Last year, we set out to put that assertion to the test. In 2015 we talked with more than 15,000 USA consumers for our report, ‘Customer Inspired: How to Achieve Growth in the 21st Century’, and proved that companies that build strong relationships with their customers enjoy stronger financial performance.
This year we went further and spoke with 4,000 UK consumers, asking them to tell us which brands really ‘get’ them. This landmark study, the Customer Quotient Report, again proved the correlation between customer closeness and growth; ranking UK companies.
Top 20 UK brands recognised by UK consumers in our report are:
- Lloyds Pharmacy
- Pure Gym
- John Lewis
- The Body Shop
- Pets at Home
- Virgin Atlantic
- P&O Cruises
- Premier Inn
- Ben & Jerry’s
UK brands including Lloyds Pharmacy, John Lewis, Dove, Premier Inn, Virgin Atlantic and the Body Shop all came out on top because they have such a great approach to customer experience, empathy and communication. They ‘walk the walk’ and mean what they say; they make you feel smart for choosing them and never take your custom for granted. On the other hand, perhaps unsurprisingly, high street banks and telecoms companies performed particularly poorly.
The Customer Quotient framework offers a roadmap to Customer Inspired Growth and clearly demonstrates that a relentless focus on the customer creates a sustainable path to growth. Historically, brands have not had to focus on the customer to deliver growth. But that’s changing fast and over the coming five years brands that ignore their customers’ changing expectations will lose out – or even fail.
Whether you’re in financial services, telecoms, technology or automotive, CQ reveals a simple truth: involving your customers in your business leads to closer relationships and improved profits. It’s now imperative that brands start to see customer understanding as a strategic issue – not just an add-on.
What our research clearly shows is that some UK bands have successfully adapted the way they engage with customers; and they’re reaping the rewards – but many have not. To survive into the future, brands need to wake up right now and realise that their most valuable asset is not their supply chain or premises or even their employees – it’s their customers.
For the full list and CQ analysis, please visit https://www.cspace.com/cq/
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