Customer Loyalty driving R&D

22 Jun 2010 Sandeep Mehta

Corporate Executive Board has another one of their useful lists: Six Myths of Customer Loyalty. R&D managers probably are a key driver of customer retention and loyalty and three of these myths are relevant to R&D:

Myth 3: Customer Loyalty Efforts Should Focus on What Customers Say is Most Important
Myth 5: Developing Personal Relationships with Customers is the Best Way for Sales to Drive Loyalty
Myth 6: Employees Who Don’t Face Customers Cannot Affect Customer Loyalty

The idea is that one has to balance internal evaluation with voice of the customer.  Customers are becoming more fickle (necessarily – competitive pressure are enormous throughout the ecosystem.  As pointed out in a Forbes article: The New Normal: Your Customer Is In The Driver’s Seat:

“Today’s consumers are more diverse, more inter-connected and more demanding than ever. Their expectations are rising while their propensity to be loyal to companies is declining, so (let’s face it) they are in the driver’s seat. The questions for companies today are then: Are companies orchestrating where consumers go, and are they making the trip pleasant?”

Some key concepts to keep in mind when R&D managers interact with Product Managers or Marketing…

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