Sunday, April 21, 2013
Customer CEO by Chuck Wall - Book review
How to Profit from the Power of Your Customers
By: Chuck Wall
Published: April 30, 2013
Format: Hardcover, 224 pages
"If you want more profitable growth and a consistent pathway toward innovation so you can stay ahead of the competition tomorrow, you must gain a deeper understanding of your customers and future customers today. Customers are in control because of an unstoppable force: the free flow of information", write marketing adviser and founder of Customer CEO, Chuck Wall, in his revolutionary and empowering book Customer CEO: How to Profit from the Power of Your Customers. The author describes how the commonly held idea in boardrooms that companies can know best about their customers is wrong, and that customers are really in charge of innovation, product development, and marketing.
Chuck Wall recognizes that companies possess and continue to gain vast amounts of data and information about their customers. While this trend toward Big Data does reveal much about customer demographics, buying habits and product and service preferences, the data is silent on the personal experience of the customer. Chuck Wall presents the idea that not understanding or ignoring this critical aspect of the customer relationship can reduce the company to irrelevance.
In pace of the panacea of Big Data and its mountain of information, the author provides an alternative approach to understanding the customer through discovering key insights into their overall experience. Thought this important insight, companies can incorporate both positive feedback and real criticism into designing and developing a superior customer experience.
Chuck Wall (photo left) understands that the crucial insight, feedback, and criticism factors are not under the control of the company. These areas of the customer experience are entirely in the hands of the customer, who the author refers to as the Customer CEO. This concept flied directly in the face of the standard company view that they control their customers and their behavior.
Chuck Wall shares the following guide for navigating this new customer controlled business landscape successfully. The author offers advice for understanding the following aspects of customer power:
* The power of me
* The power of value
* The power of performance
* The power of the heart
* The power of simple
* The power of yes
* The power of the platform
* The power of rebellion
* THe power of purpose
For me, the power of the book is how Chuck Wall combines a complete analysis of why companies have ceded the real power to customers, with a comprehensive road map for transforming that customer control into a real competitive advantage. The author makes the important observation that customers have gained control of the marketplace, and are exercising that power in many different and important ways. This new landscape has frightened many companies, and the idea that they no longer control their customers and their behavior is one they either dismiss or ignore. Instead of clinging to their customer data collections, the author recommends firms embrace a customer insight methodology.
Chuck Wall presents an alternative viewpoint to this wrongheaded corporate position, or the author, this alleged sense of control is only an illusion, and clinging to it will result in lost customers and profits for the firm. In the bold new approach offered by the author, a company that embraces the customer as the driver of the marketplace, will possess a distinct competitive advantage. While the very idea that giving up the mistaken concept of control may be counter-intuitive to many organizations, the paradox is that company will come out ahead in the creation of a superior customer experience.
I highly recommend the ground breaking and transformational book Customer CEO: How to Profit from the Power of Your Customers by Chuck Wall, to any business leaders, decision makers and CEOs who are serious about truly understanding their customers, and in establishing the best possible customer experience. This book will change forever the viewpoint that the company has control of the actions of the customer, and replaces it with the exciting and profit building concept of the Customer CEO.
Labels: book reviews
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