Sunday, December 28, 2008

Customer Experience in a Recession

Two consecutive quarters of negative growth in the UK economy means we are officially in a recession (even though most sensibe people been saying that for almost a year).

A recession it may be, but its not technically a 'depression'. I think the best desciption of both has to be Ronald Regan from his 1980 presidential nominee speech:

"A recession is when your neighbor loses his job. A depression is when you lose yours. And recovery is when Jimmy Carter loses his."

Economists now generally agree that the downturn will last at least about two years. First becoming worst in 2009, it will eventually tail off around 2011.

To so this, they will consider a number of questions:
  1. How can you gain competitive advantage/market share without significant expenditure?
  2. Can you restrict your customer strategies, especially if there is not tangible/obvious Return on Investment (ROI)?
  3. At what point do you forget the ‘customer experience’ and cut costs?
  4. If customers are increasing their usage of different channels (e.g. mobile, internet/media devices, etc.) how do you faciliate these on the same/less budget?
However, as an example of corporate Darwinian theory, the best business will survive in these conditions. Those that do survive will have learnt to be flexible & lean, but should be ideally placed to take advantage of the economy when it eventually returns to full-health.
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