The Covid-19 pandemic has caught the whole world unprepared, forcing most businesses to upend their processes and customary practices to cope with extraordinary circumstances. All interactions between brands and their customers have been permanently altered. Telework has become a part of our lives (to the point that several multinational companies are pledging to keep it, at least as an option, even past the current crisis). This new way of working has effectively revolutionized the habits of millions of professionals, reprogramming them and laying the foundations for a wider transformation in society in general. All businesses that were lagging behind in their digital transformation are scrambling to get up to date. The process has been unnaturally accelerated, but we believe it is now set on its tracks and not likely to be stopped or slowed down. Here’s how Italy coped with it.
Italy’s digital transformation
E-commerce platforms experienced a spike in registrations by Italian businesses during the pandemic, as more and more companies were forced to shut down or reduce their traditional operations and had to embrace their long-delayed digital transformation in order to keep reaching their customers. The volume of purchases, of course, increased dramatically during the lockdown, and so did user engagement, in the form of ratings and reviews. This provided an unprecedented amount of data, allowing brands to trace consumers’ online purchasing preferences and compare them to those registered by SMEs and micro-enterprises. This could open up a whole new scenario that most Italian companies have been ignoring far longer than their international counterparts. But how are they coping with this sudden acceleration in their digital transformation process?
Moncler enhances e-Commerce and embraces digital transformation
The iconic Italian fashion brand Moncler accelerated its digital transformation by enhancing its eCommerce experience, which the brand now manages directly. The goal of this new policy is to reach unprecedented levels of UX customisation, creating experiences that are unique to each client, thus strengthening the bond between the customer and the brand. Moncler’s management made it clear that their idea of digital transformation goes beyond having a functional and effective e-Commerce platform: they wish to make every single project and process entirely digital or at least have it stem from a digital origin. Such a momentous shift – for a relatively “traditional” company – called for fast-paced organisational, cultural, and technological transformations and, most of all, it requires an open mind and the will to shift age-long prejudices and acknowledged truths about what works or doesn’t work within a successful and effective marketing strategy.
Green Network is investing in AI
Green Network is one of the main utility providers in Italy, distributing gas and electricity to thousands of users all over the country. They were already investing in digitization before the crisis, but their endeavour has intensified over the past six months, as they strive to provide better, more efficient services to their customers. Green Network recently launched the “Customer Experience Restart” program, which uses AI to reduce waiting time in the management of customer requests. The company achieved this through “process mining” technology, which uses Artificial Intelligence to combine real-time business data collection, the automation of operational activities, and machine learning to make business processes more streamlined and oriented towards continuous improvement. As a result, the interactions between users and their service provider – which in Italy can reach a high degree of byzantine complexity – are smoother, faster, less complicated, and much more effective, which improves the customer’s satisfaction and brand loyalty.