Cars for sale. Who cares?

Think of the word “chevalier”

At first hand, it implies that a man is chivalrous. A knight, as it was called way back in the day. Someone who was quite well off. Had a good hand with the ladies. A charmer.

But if you do your linguistic (i.e. French) research right, it is far simpler than that. It means a guy who owns a horse. No more, no less. A mere horse.

Owning a horse, in the old days, extended not only your body (taller, faster, tougher) but also your persona (smarter, sexier, more powerful).

Now fast forward to present days. Few men, and women, own a horse today. But very many of us own a car. And funnily enough, we have, for the last century, attributed that ownership the same connotations as our medieval predecessors did to their horses. We love and cherish the brand of the car we own and drive.

My car makes me not only taller, faster and tougher but also smarter, sexier and more powerful. At least, that is what we think. And what makes us spend a considerable part of our income on a rather dead piece of metal and plastic. At least compared to a horse.

But now things are changing.

Cars are not sold anymore. They are leased. Or even rented by the hour (without any shady implications). Basically, cars are owned by banks. Not by individuals.

So, from being an object that you own, cars have become a service that you buy. When you need it.

Where will this – in the longer perspective – lead to in terms of brand affinity and brand asset? Will young urban drivers develop a closer relationship with those brands that provide the functionality of a car-for-hire than the brands of those manufacturers that actually make cars-for-sale.

We don’t know yet. But we can find out.

Because we create value for companies around the world by transforming data and knowledge into strategic advice and efficient communication.

Car for sale. Who cares?

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Opticom are pleased to announce our partnership with SynGro, a world leader in customer experience management technology. SynGro share our commitment to turning customer feedback into valuable insight to drive strategic action and tangible value.

Today’s business benchmark “Customer Experience”
Gartner defines customer experience management (CEM) as “the practice of designing and reacting to customer interactions to meet or exceed customer expectations and, thus, increase customer satisfaction, loyalty and advocacy.”

Our customer experience software gathers feedback from any source including in-person and telephone interviews, SMS/web/IVR surveys and even complaints, reviews and social media. Feedback is analysed in real time with critical trends and topics automatically distributed to the right people to take the right follow-up actions.

By integrating this real time feedback with financial, operational and geographical data unique to your company, a true single customer view emerges. The result is loyal customers who spend more and promote your brand.

Opticom and Syngro would like to invite you to learn more about today’s business benchmark ”customer experience” and how we can help you drive value from insight. To book one of our exclusive 1-to-1 customer experience discovery sessions in November, call Tejpal Chugh, Customer experience specialist on +46 708 39 90 07 or email him at tejpal [at] opticom [dot] se.

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Given our extensive experience in conducting global customer research, clients often rely on Opticom to develop their skills of listening to the market, to base their decisions on market facts and to embed the customer´s voice in their companies DNA. Successful companies do not just focus on what their customers want, but put the customers at the centre of all they do. They strive at finding ways to differentiate themselves from competition. Profits follow from this; they do not lead it. Opticom offers a unique portfolio of consulting services focusing on retaining customers and building loyalty, securing more business and finding ways to differentiate from competition.

Customer satisfaction research

We really need our customers, regardless of the products we sell or the services that we offer, but customers are mostly doing just fine without us. Conducting customer satisfaction research shows that you care about your customers and are interested in what they have to say, but – more importantly – acting upon the results from the survey and suggestions put forward by your customers strengthens their perception of your company as both customer-oriented and trustworthy.

Opticom’s comprehensive model for customer satisfaction research with extensive qualitative in-depth interviews provides detailed feedback on customers’ opinions, expectations and perceptions of the performance of your company and allows you to take action on all relevant levels. Besides enabling direct and short-term improvements for existing clients, the feedback provided from customer satisfaction research allows our clients to become even more market-focused and differentiate themselves through an improved product and service offering.

Best-in-class supplier study

The general purpose of this study is to enhance our clients’ understanding of the future needs and expectations of key potential and current customers. The project scope covers trend analysis, defines critical customer interaction areas, benchmarks against competition and identifies value creation opportunities. The study should ultimately help our client to become a best-in-class supplier with an efficient sales organisation offering an optimal product and service portfolio.

Prospecting for business opportunities

Opticom frequently co-operates with our clients to prospect for business opportunities by mapping potential customers, creating awareness among them and investigating their buying intentions – in both existing and new business segments. Over the years Opticom has helped generate hundreds of million euro in additional revenues to our customers on five continents.

Learning from lost customers

Most businesses – even the best ones – lose customers over time. But if a company can retain customers longer this can make a dramatic change to the bottom line. So crucial insights into why customers take their business elsewhere and what the competitors are up to will help you to increase customer loyalty and thereby save costs and effort needed to find new customers.

The projects focus on why customers have chosen to discontinue their business relationship, what our clients need to do better and different in the future, which elements in our clients’ offering that are still appealing, if our clients still could be considered as a supplier in the future and which customers that are at risk and how losing their business can be avoided. The general purpose of these studies is to enhance our clients’ capabilities in retaining customers over time.

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Successful stakeholder management not only requires certain competence and skill sets but may also involve organizational changes. Opticom has helped many pharmaceutical companies to optimize their Stakeholder Management by means of one or more of the following services:

Stakeholder mapping

An identification and to some extent prioritization of stakeholders as well as individual contact persons on national, regional and local levels as relevant. Stakeholders may include politicians, governmental institutions and authorities, Key Opinion Leaders and Young Talents, specialist nurses, researchers, patient organizations and individual patients, other non-profit organizations and possibly international organizations or individuals that you should be aware of, learn from or get in contact with.

The main result of the Stakeholder Mapping is a list of organisations and individuals with an indication of their official or unofficial role and responsibilities in the area that is being investigated.

Stakeholder analysis

A more in-depth analysis of current views and decision-making as well as an indication of future trends and challenges. The analysis also maps stakeholder networks: relations and cooperation among and within stakeholder groups, in order to identify who influences who and how – now and as expected in the future. The research may include identifying opportunities for direct cooperation between our client and specific stakeholders.

The outcome of the Stakeholder Analysis is a report summarizing findings, showing stakeholder networks, analyzing future expectations, and providing recommendations for stakeholder management, all illustrated with quotes and examples of stakeholder cooperation.

Stakeholder Management workshops

A workshop with the people who have already been and will be involved in the company’s stakeholder management in order to develop a Stakeholder Management Strategy and Action Plan.

The outcome of the workshop is a list of concrete actions to be taken to kick-off or improve Stakeholder Management, for example regarding communication, relationship-building and cooperation with specific stakeholders.

Future Lab

Taking stakeholder management to a higher level the Future Lab is a unique concept of innovative networking providing the opportunity to take an active or even pro-active role among stakeholders. Relevant people from different stakeholder groups are invited to discuss today’s challenges and future opportunities with each other and our client in round table discussions and through in-depth interviews.

The outcome of the Future Lab includes a report with strategic market insights, conclusions and recommendations, as well as a network with prioritized stakeholders for continued communication and cooperation. In addition, the Future Lab shows a strong sign of market leadership, an innovative image, and long-lasting credibility among stakeholders.

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Better understanding customers and other important stakeholders is critical to become a market leader … but not as easy as it sounds if you are missing the step of making sure valuable learnings result in actions that are ready for implementation.

Opticom does not only gather strategic input from defined target groups, but also helps customers to act upon such input. Most of Opticom’s projects include workshops based on proven methods very much appreciated by our clients. While each workshop is adjusted to specific client needs, it always builds on all participants contributing with their viewpoints in order to increase internal motivation and commitment. Another key driver is to make sure that ideas are discussed and prioritised based on their potential value as well as the effort needed for implementation.

Apart from conducting a workshop to transform results into actions, Opticom also has extensive experience in facilitating other types of workshops. A workshop could be used to identify and prioritize challenges, for example related to the corporate brand, internal knowledge gaps or a mapping of current stakeholder relations, in order to then discuss and prioritize possible ways to deal with those challenges.

The success of a project or strategy depends on the involvement from key people internally; during definition as well as implementation. Opticom’s workshops are a time-effective way to create this involvement and make sure participants not only accept and appreciate but also contribute to and stimulate the changes that are needed to implement improvement actions. While a good presentation surely results in individual and small-group brainstorming, Opticom’s workshops enable a quick-start to improved performance and thereby guarantee that clients get the best possible return on their investment!

According to our clients the outcome and value of the Opticom workshops are:
> Direct and objective help with the interpretation of the results of a project
> A quick and effective way to identify and prioritize improvement actions
> A strong motivator for internal project teams: an intensive kick-off to concrete actions
> A clear follow up-structure and strong basis for continuing to work with the results internally and ensuring identified improvement actions are implemented

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