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August 8, 2017

Airbnb is no longer content with championing host-based accommodations. It has entered into a deal with a New York based app Resy to integrate restaurant reservations. The company has also launched Experiences to offer highly curated tours and multiday itineraries of local adventures that were once the exclusive domain of premium travel agents.

Netflix, iTunes,, Google Play, Hulu, Amazon, Flipkart, and such other giant platforms are capturing opportunities in the digital universe and meeting every need of their customers.

Fiat is looking to partner with market players like TomTom, Reuters, Facebook, and TuneIn to create its own Uconnect platform to provide drivers with communication, entertainment, and navigation features that help them stay focused on driving.

What are these companies doing? How are they cracking their customer experience? Why is Airbnb, for example, aggressively moving towards becoming a platform that can handle its customers entiretravel experience? Why is Amazon flourishing as the one-stop everything store?

I believe these companies have one common feature the drive to deliver excellent customer experience (CX). They are intensely tapping into the digital universe to capture and aggregate the diverse coalitions of manufacturers, suppliers, developers, and collaborators. Their offerings cut across businesses and industries outside their own. They have understood that it is not possible to meet customer expectations without plugging into the all-pervasive digital players that have become a normal part of everyday life of their customers.

Consumers today want everything at one place. They dont want to grapple with multiple platforms and information overload. Short attention span is increasing the demand for quick and sassy solutions. They can also compare prices at their fingertips. Whether it is a significant decision like purchasing a new house or a short-term call like booking a cab, they want to transact seamlessly.

This is where players in a digital ecosystem can converge into one large interconnected maze wherein they interact with each other electronically, simplify the complex customer journey, and deliver end-to-end experience until customer satisfaction is achieved. Businesses that truly see this potential are tapping into their mutually beneficial ecosystems to create one-stop-shops thereby reinventing CX and the role they play in delivering it. The success of such aggregation, however, will not only depend on your companys own digital expertise and competitiveness, but also the ecosystem players collective competitiveness.

So what are you waiting for? The digital ecosystem is ripe with opportunities to interconnect. Aggregate and reimagine your CX. For an in-depth understanding of the crucial importance of participating in digital ecosystems, and to read case studies highlighting the benefits arising therefrom, read my article ‘Why Your CX Must Soon Plug and Play into a Digital Ecosystem’in the latest volume of Perspectives, our management journal.

Antony Grigg is an ex TCSer and was the Global Digital and CX Practice Lead for Business Consulting focused on defining future journeys and new operating models. Antony is a Thought leader on the impact of 'digital' on Customer Experience and the future enterprise, speaking at conferences, innovation events, round tables and breakfast meetings across all industries.


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