A Quote about the CCO Council from Curtis Bingham
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Curtis On…Customer Centricity as a Marketing Strategy: 5. Enlisting (Unlikely) Allies as Part of the Desired Audience

In this fifth of a ten part series of videos, Curtis Bingham, Founder and Executive Director of the Chief Customer Officer Council on location at IQPC's CMO Exchange in London, July 2011, shares the advantages to enlisting allies to become part of your desired audience as you embed customer centricity in your organization.


Transcript for Curtis On…Customer Centricity as a Marketing Strategy: 5. Enlisting (Unlikely) Allies as Part of the Desired Audience

The next step that you need to go to is looking at allies. As we've heard in some of these cases here, we can't do everything ourselves. There's a brilliant slide by Lippincott here where they drew a line down through diagonally and said, “Here is the piece we have control over, and here is the piece that we need to just simply influence.” And the key thing here is that you can't do everything on your own. You need to be able to influence and draw upon allies.

The next step here, the second element in creating the desired audience is that of choosing allies. Tammy McLeod is the vice president and chief customer officer for Arizona Public Service, a public utility that used to be run by the government; now, it's run by a private firm in the State of Arizona in the United States.

She created this concept of “unlikely allies” the principle here being, “If I can go and get people who are not traditionally championing the customer experience to begin to champion the customer experience, then, it's going to raise some eyebrows; it's going to raise the profile. People are going to start thinking—if so and so is doing this and they're not ever associated with customers, maybe there's something there that I need to focus on.”

So, she went out to Legal and clearly showed Legal’s impact on customers, both business and residential. She went to Billing and clearly showed how disastrous poor billing practices were; and a very convoluted bill was on the call center volume; and the cost associated with that recurred every month, the anniversary of the bill.

We heard from Dell this morning that as part of their customer centricity efforts, they enjoyed a 20% reduction in their service operating cost as a result of their focus on customer centricity.
So, Tammy also went to Fleet Services (these are the folks who operate the trucks) and convinced them how important it was to have the trucks and the facilities properly maintained to leverage the brand that she was trying to create.

And the impact was huge. She got a number of allies, all of the traditional ones but she got very non-traditional allies here as well; and they started championing the cause. They got their employees on board. And because she got all of these allies, she no longer had to be the only champion, the only customer advocate in the company.

So, choosing the desired audience is very important.


"At SAVO, we are dedicated to our customers' success. We have organized our teams around it, developed programs to promote it, and we measure ourselves based on their success. I look forward to working with other members of the council to explore innovative ways to drive the imperative
of customer success to
the forefront of an
strategic initiatives."

Brian Study
SAVO Group