17 Sep

Customer centricity in Consumer Healthcare – Seizing growth beyond expectations II

hans-v-regenauerThe quantity of information you get by searching at Google or YouTube on the subject of customer centricity is really impressive. The quality is mostly repellent.

Professor Peter S. Fader was one of the first academics claiming customer centricity as a holistic strategy for maximizing shareholder value long-term.

To read his articles or watching the Videos is well invested time to my standards. Some authors go much further as Professor Fader in stating that ultimately customer centricity aims to maximize the customer’s value in the interaction. Growing shareholder value is just the consequence of this approach, not at all main objective. I think that is too much of philanthropy. Some authors in opposite are very negative towards customer centricity and call it a fashionable devilment. I call that position: wilful ignorance.

Moderately approached is customer centricity in most of the cases described as a strategy to better understand and cluster the universe of external customers in order to maximize long-term shareholder value. The future value of customers should be clearly identified, retained or acquired, less valuable customers should be harvested or ignored. Ideally a company is able to single-out and engage with the most valuable individual customers. How you organize your data-collection and data-processing supporting a stream of value creating initiatives doesn´t matter too much – as long as it happen at all. Managing complexity in customer-universes suggest establishing a CRM-system for dealing with potential information overkill.

As we all know Consumer Healthcare companies are engaging with very different external customers:

  • Consumers
  • Trade partners (Pharmacists, Wholesalers, Retailers)
  • Healthcare professionals (face to face advisors to consumers)
  • Other Healthcare stakeholders (Media, Politicians, Regulators/Public servants)

I believe establishing a truly customer centric approach would require to balance all a.m. external customers into one universal strategy with all interdependencies. It is not sufficient to excel in one customer group. High performing companies should master the universe of customers holistically.

Since customer centricity is rooting on today’s knowledge but is aiming to strip out future value it is essential to think about future scenarios first.

In my expectation the CHC market will develop evolutionary within the next five years. The market frame work will not differ too much from today in established categories. New market opportunities derive mainly from RX to OTC switching and entrance into new markets i.e. medical beauty and aesthetics. Consolidation of the industry continuous. In what business a company is really in (now and in 5 to 10 years) depends on its appetite for growth.

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