Last week, my article was on the demand chain, or, as I think of it, the “customer chain.” This is the ecosystem of customer organizations and individuals that starts with your products and services and ends up in the hands of the end-customers, who actually use or consume what you offer. In between, there might be resellers (value-added or otherwise), distributors, brokers, agents, retailers, etailers, and on and on. We talk a lot about helping your end-customers achieve their goals, making it easy for them to do so, and making the experience one that delights them. Well, ditto for all the participants in the customer chain. Just as you understand what the customers are trying to achieve and what they want from what you offer, you should also understand what matters to everyone in the links down that chain. You all work together on behalf of the end-customer (thus, a customer ecosystem), and you should make the going easy for all involved. However, you always need to keep the end-customers’ goals at top of mind, because, if they aren’t satisfied, no one will be!
Supporting the Demand (Customer) Chain
Start with the End-Customers, but Make Sure You’re Making It Easy for Every Stakeholder Between You and Them
By Ronni T. Marshak, EVP & Sr. Consultant/Analyst, June 6, 2013
Just as there are multiple links in your supply chain, there are many participating organizations in your demand chain. When you start thinking of the demand chain as a “customer chain,” you can delight all links in that chain down to the end-customer—the one who actually uses your product or service—by understanding the needs and scenarios of every participant along the way.
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