You are here

Back to top

What next after services? Ideas from new book.....

What next after service? Let us assume you have your customer relations sorted, your systems automated, SLAs met and a work-from-home sales force engaged with existing and new customers.

And you face a world of automation and similar products, indifferent marketing and rivals doing the same thing? MSPs in particular face this, and the key item that comes up in discussions with them is how to differentiate what they do.

Professor Steven Van Belleghem is an expert on customer experience, and sets out to answer this conundrum in his new book “the offer you can’t refuse”  The subtext is how to make what you do and what you offer your customers so essential to their businesses and their personal lives that they dare not think of going elsewhere.

We had hoped to bring Steven to a wider audience in this month’s Managed Services Summit, where his ideas on new services would have found a ready audience, but timetables clashed- perhaps next time.

There are a lot of assumptions here – many suppliers have yet to implement a digital transformation in how they work, customer engagement is haphazard and, in 2020, find it hard to concentrate on anything other than staying in business, let alone the wider aspects of global issues and reputation building.

But, like many with time to think beyond the mundane, he explores some interesting ideas, and reinforces these with a wealth of insights and anecdotes. He may be seen as prescient in a future when companies have time to think beyond survival, when climate change, healthcare and global issues once again command our thoughts.

Meanwhile, this book can be recommended as the antidote to technology rush; although he mentions technologies such as quantum, cyber-security and communications in passing, they are very much the background to his era of change. While Covid concerns are a core part of the book, which has been produced very rapidly this year, the themes are still forward-looking and could create a whole series of futurist lectures.

So if you can lift your head up from the day-to-day, the book could be a useful reminder that we are all in this for the long haul, and the format is colourful and easy-to-read, with example case studies based on US and European companies.