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We are all in love with automation, so I need to explain to you why too much automation does not benefit your customer journey.

Is this a bold statement to make? I don’t think so, and yet some of you might disagree with me.

We are in a time of explosive growth when it comes to technology and our uses of it. Developers are creating new apps every day, and it seems that every time we look there is a new tool to automate a task, a step or a standard set of actions in our daily digital life.

But is this too much? How much is enough?

When I look through the forums of the ‘latest and greatest’ tools and apps, I am overwhelmed. ‘New improved’ versions of existing tools are popping up everywhere and are often free or extremely cheap.

Even influencers and business leaders are developing apps to move their customer base onto their mobiles. This allows them to connect and interact more consistently online with customers.

Is this a good thing?

Yes, and no. It’s great for the business owner who wants to continue connecting and capturing the attention of their customers, prospects and new leads by bringing new ways to talk and engage with people.

Have you noticed a pop-up on some websites, inviting you to chat with them via your Facebook Messenger account? This is another way to talk to people in a more ‘real-time’ environment and keep the conversation going.

However, what does this mean in terms of the customer’s daily habits, and their levels of technology saturation?

I can see that they’re changing, and I don’t think it’s a necessarily positive thing.

Have you noticed on your smartphone there is an app that tracks your screen time? It’s part of the iPhone standard apps – and I have mine enabled so I can record how long I spend on my phone.

If you haven’t got this enabled, I recommend you consider enabling it so you can check out your own mobile phone screen time – and see if it’s something you’re happy with.

So why is this not a positive thing?

Well, it’s simple; we’re commoditising our customers and prospects by the use of more technology, more bots, more automation, without any real human contact. We expect them to engage with our technology platforms and what we have set up for them with the hope of moving them along a journey to a sale – all without having any human interaction to get them there.

Over the last couple of years, we have seen an explosion of this technology, as I have mentioned already. People are becoming ‘apped out’ and increasingly desensitised to the technology-driven sales funnels that were easy to set up and successful two years ago. Even twelve months ago, they were working.

However, these sales funnels aren’t working so well anymore. Paid ads into technology-based sales funnels aren’t working.

Consumers are becoming more discerning, more hesitant, and less committed to your technology-driven process.

They are wary, discerning, mistrusting and savvy buyers. They have changed their ways of purchasing (as a result of this technology explosion) and are less trusting.

Have you noticed that you are less trusting of people’s sales tactics online? Are you relying more on google reviews or online reviews of a product before you buy? Are you reading lots of comments about something before you purchase a new product?

I know I am.

So, as a result of this technology explosion over the past couple of years, people are becoming less engaged by online tactics, yet they are also craving more human to human contact.

Recently, I’ve read some reports of studies looking at consumer behaviours over the past five years and analysed the changes over time in both their expectations and how they purchase.

These studies have identified that people are purchasing differently and evaluating new purchases with greater discernment. What this means is that what you were doing twelve months ago to attract and retain customers is no longer working effectively.

I have customers who have told me that twelve months ago, their pipeline was full as a result of their activities and efforts, but that their pipeline is now empty (before COVID-19). Why is this? Because their old ways of attracting new leads are no longer working.

Similarly, the old ways of engaging customers are not working either. It’s becoming harder as their customers are either ‘spoilt for choice’ or are being highly discerning before they buy. Their selection criteria have increased a level or two.

So we now have:

– New technology platforms, tools, apps and bots

Plus

– Consumers becoming less trusting and more discerning before they make a purchase decision

So

How do you continue to attract customers as easily as you did in the past?

How can you continue to convert prospects into customers as you did in the past?

What futurists are pointing out is that people are sick and tired of the technology robots and they want to do business with a human.

The crucial key to your evolving and future customer journeys is to adapt in this changing landscape of technology and online business – and to create genuine engagement without using a bot, or app, or automation gadget each time.

I’ve already explained the changes in behaviour and trends, and where people’s preferences are moving as a result of the shifts over the last two years.

Also, I hope you can see now why too much automation is not good for your customer journey. People want a human to engage with instead of a page, app or bot.

Too much technology can drive your customers away or customer journey. Poorly designed technology will not even bring new leads to your door!

And too much poorly designed technology will not keep your customers happy today; they will be searching elsewhere for someone else to provide better service.

So before you go to buy that next app, bot or tool for your business: ask yourself if this is going to engage your leads, prospects and customers even more? Or if it’s going to drive them away as they search for the provider who is prepared to give them some REAL engagement?

It is time for you to innovate and show your customers that you’re real.

And that, unfortunately, is something that automation can never replace.

If you need help with customer journey, feel free to contact us!