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Customer Experience Blind Spots

IDC's Customer Experience Research finds that 100 percent of IT sales and marketing professionals believe alignment of marketing content and sales approach with the needs of customers is very important. However, IT sales and marketing professionals scored their current alignment with customer buy-cycles at 66 percent, effectively grading themselves a C-. In a recent survey of IT vendors, respondents cited that customer alignment is weakest in the awareness and consideration phases of the buy-cycle, creating significant lost revenue opportunities. However, many respondents indicate that misalignment also occurs in the latter phases of the buy-cycle, resulting in customer retention issues.

"The maturation of the tech industry has created unprecedented margin pressure for tech vendors, forcing sales and marketing executives to get a greater return on every dollar spent. But how to execute this remains a mystery to many," states Robert Johnson, vice president of Customer Experience Research at IDC.

In a recent study that examines the customer experience, IDC uncovered a strong theme � vendors lack sufficient contact, feedback, and understanding to achieve desired alignment with customers. "Not only do business-to-business tech marketers have blind spots when it comes to their prospects and customers, but changing buying team dynamics and the infusion of new marketing vehicles such as Blogs and podcasting further complicates their understanding of how buyers are and will be influenced," said Rich Vancil, vice president of IDC's CMO Advisory Service.

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