Customer Experience and the Internet of Things

Industrial Internet of Things

New technology and business model dicussions abound with regard to the Industrial Internet of Things (IIOT). What you don’t hear as frequently are discussions about the impacts and changes IIOT will have on customers’ experiences, especially in a B2B model.

From my perspective, these changes will be as profound, if not more profound, than the business model impacts. Additionally, I believe the advancement from technology focus to experience focus will happen more quickly in this space than it has in others.

By this I mean the value add provided by producers will quickly evolve from selling, for example, a remote monitoring control device commodity, to a package of remote monitoring and diagnostics (RM&D) capabilities, to RM&D services, to an RM&D experience. While many companies do and will continue to fill the ranks with offers at all levels (commodity providers, capability providers, and service providers), the true successes will be those companies that rapidly evolve or are born into an IIOT offering absorbed in an experience.

To assist in advancing this discussion, I’m sharing five use cases highlighted in an Altimeter Group white paper titled, “Customer Experience in the Internet of Things: Five Ways Brands Can Use Sensors to Build Better Customer Relationships” to see if these same use cases are B2B relevant for the Industrial Internet of Things:

  1. Reward consumers for their time, money, effort, and engagement by providing incentives (monetary, promotion, points, or content) derived from data generated online or offline to drive customer interaction.
  2. Empower consumers with the ability to access and act on intelligence by using informational media designed to aid consumers with product and service decision making precisely when they need it.
  3. Foster easier, more accessible, and convenient brand experiences by architecting a streamlined experience with a specific environment, allowing consumers to easily access, acquire, or accomplish what’s needed.
  4. Support and retain customers by proactively identifying opportunities in real time to predict what’s needed by using real-time product and service data.
  5. Leverage feedback for rapid R&D, customization, and improvement by collecting real-time feedback to inform and enable product and service development, design, or customization.

What would a B2B Industrial Internet of Things offering look like if it included or combined use cases from the above? Would it look terribly different from IIOT offerings that exist today? As a B2B customer, is there one use case that really stands out as desirable? One that stands out as unimportant?

If you’d be interested in providing input on this topic, we would love to hear from you.

Reference: Altimeter Group. (2015) Customer Experience in the Internet of Things: Five Ways Brands Can Use Sensors to Build Better Customer Relationships,

David Kocher

Acting as an internal customer advocate, I live by Diogenes' statement that “We have two ears and one tongue so that we would listen more and talk less.” I know listening can only do so much and action on your behalf is required to improve your daily experiences. Check out my posts where I seek your advice or share recent stories about enhancing customer experiences. Leave a reply on my most recent blog post or connect with me on LinkedIn if you have a powerful story to share or suggestion for the GE Intelligent Platforms team.

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