Customer-centricity: what is it and what does it even mean to be customer-centric? Does it matter to define it or look at how people define it? It sure does! Definitions, models, views and approaches to be more customer-centric.

While customer-centricity isn’t new, it’s increasingly used in the context of, among others, digital marketing transformation, corporate ‘customer culture’, customer experience (management), a customer-oriented business approach and the customer life cyle (including service etc.).

However, often we talk about customer-centricity without really knowing what we mean.

Being customer-centric: just common sense? – defining

Customer-centricity. It’s a word we’ve been using for ages – and probably many others – without really thinking too much about it but rather using it as an obvious given in business. The first question: what does it mean to be customer-centric?

It depends. Most of us use it in the sense of putting the customer at the center. Realizing that, regardless of time, creating customer value and really putting customers first, beyond a simple customer focus, it generates most and longest lasting business value. In this sense it’s common language. Customer-centric. As in anthropocentric, egocentric, geocentric or heliocentric.

It also depends on how you define the customer. Is it just the existing customer? Other stakeholders? Is it also the prospective buyer? And what about the customer of your customers (very important as Ram Charan reminds us – see below)? Or their – influential – social connections? Your employees? Suppliers? Channel partners? Journalists? PR, for instance, works better if we look at journalists as buyers who have a need (informing their readers or viewers properly) and making sure this way their publications thrive and survive.


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