Setting up a customer centric approach
People tell businesses what they want every day, by giving them money. But if you’re business isn’t set up to be customer centric then perhaps you aren’t really taking advantage of all the opportunities that exist.
In today’s market place, customers are savvy and can easily digitally educate themselves – you might be one of those people right now, reading this to educate yourself about marketing automation or customer segmentation software.
For both B2B and B2C markets, your marketing needs to be relevant to the audiences that you are targeting. Using old style one-size fits all marketing limits your marketing effectiveness.
Becoming customer centric
Business has moved from a move of build it and then sell it – to sell it and then build it. It’s the lean startup model and one that is used by 1000’s of new startups every year.
Typically, that means getting your customers engaged first and then building your business around the needs and behaviour of these customers. The key to being successful with this approach is to;
a) manage the customer data you collect,
b) to use the data to support the key business decisions.
It’s data driven, logical but most importantly driven by customer behaviour.
Data Driven Marketing
If you have a business that collects data – about your sales and about your customers, then you have the foundation to create customer centric marketing.
Then using marketing automation software such as Websand, use this data to look at the financial performance of your business based on customer personas, and then create and nurture relevant personalised marketing.
Marketing that helps to cut through the noise of the 1000’s of marketing messages they see every day because it is in context to the behaviour of each individual customer.
Getting this right will reduce customer churn, build new revenue streams from existing customers and open new opportunities within your business.
Five things holding you back from becoming customer centric.
This is all great. You’ve got the data, you want to grow your business, so what’s stopping you? I’ve posted before about customer data management, but perhaps something else is holding you back?
Disjointed Marketing Experiences
Do you have a single marketing strategy with a consistent message or is it fragmented. Different messages from different areas of the business, all saying completely different things – not aligned.
No central marketing platform
It can be difficult for marketers to create a centralised place to create, manage and implement customer journeys. With lots of different systems and platforms already in place within a business finding a way to link things up can be a challenge.
No access to data
People tell you want they want everyday by giving your business money. The power is all in the data.
As a marketer or CEO you need to be able to clearly understand and leverage the customer data you collect. This information gives you a consistent view of customer behaviour – allowing you to understand the history and measure the impact of the business or marketing decisions you make.
This does not mean BIG DATA. It means YOUR DATA. And it’s the BIG ANSWERS we are looking for.
If you have big data and it tells you nothing, then what’s the point?
Businesses move at different speeds. Some are expected to move faster than others.
For example, an online retailer that takes 20 days to deliver a product could have a challenge in meeting customer expectations, especially if their competition can ship the same product at the same price in 3 days.
But one thing is constant, change happens every day.
- Can your business react to the opportunities that change brings?
- Does your business live in perpetual beta?
- Could you challenge the expectations of a typical customer and blow their mind by being faster or simply better?
- How fast can you put a business or marketing decision into practice?
- If you can move faster – what impact could that make to your business? If you are that same online retailer that takes 20 days to ship, what would the impact be if you could ship in 2 days, and make it free.
Increased customer sophistication
The internet has turned consumers into a savvy bunch, and that will continue to be the case. A one size marketing message no longer fits all. Your customer now has access to everything that has been said about your business – good and bad, and the customer is always right (even when they are wrong – right)
Difficult to keep up
More channels than ever before. More messages than ever before. More personalisation to create than ever before. Can mean more noise to manage than ever before and more to understand than ever before.
You can only do so much. Just as your marketing needs to be personalised, the platform that you use to manage your marketing needs to be personalised to your needs and the existing data within your business.
Five steps to becoming customer centric business
So that’s the painful and fearful stuff out of the way.
Here’s the joy, what you can do to become customer centric using marketing platforms such as our very own Websand ☺
Connect with customers by understanding their personas
Customers are savvy. They know when you are lazy and they react when you get it right. If you keep getting it wrong, they will find somewhere else to get what they need.
Using customer segmentation you can create customer groups or personas based on the customer data you collect. It could be based on what they have bought, where they live, the time since their last purchase or a customer lifetime value level.
Creating and understanding these personas helps you to create marketing messages. To create the right content, tone and context within marketing message and make sure it’s relevant to them.
That means you’ll get it right more times than you’ll get it wrong.
It’s why our clients have response rate 100% higher than industry averages.
Get across the marketing channels
Customer personas could include their preferred method of communication – be that SMS, email, direct mail or even a telephone call.
You can apply a consistent message based on the persona of the customers across all the channels.
It’s a marketing sandwich
[CUSTOMER] You know who they are,
[BUSINESS] You know what you want to say to them,
[BUSINESS] When you want to say it
[CUSTOMER] How they want to receive the message.
Find out what works
Websand manages the marketing outputs – the marketing messages you send based on your customer personas – and collects the following inputs.
The marketing events – who has received, opened, clicked, bounced, unsubscribed, failed.
Your customer data – the information you collect everyday, who has joined, signed up, bought, returned, used a promo code.
Create a new customer persona based on marketing success from each marketing message you send out and you’ll easily know what marketing is working and what is not
Keep it fresh
When a marketing message no longer works to the level it once did, then change it.
- Change the customer persona.
- Amend the marketing message.
- Adjust with the timing.
Then put it back in play.
Don’t get the mechanism and the strategy mixed up
Tools like Websand are a mechanism for business, they help you to create a framework for your customer centric marketing strategy and then give you the tools put your strategy into action.
However, these tools do not create the strategy, that remains the job of the marketer – they are the head chef in this kitchen. They create the marketing recipes and provide the marketing ingredients. Websand is simply the oven to bring the ingredients to life.
The key is to get started. If you have the strategy even half right you will soon find out what works and what doesn’t; where you need to focus to improve customer engagement and where you can rely on consistent marketing results.
That could be increasing customer lifetime value, reducing customer churn, delivering cross-selling opportunities or creating a super-powered customer referral programme.
It’s about helping you to get closer to your customers and giving you the ability to deliver measurable customer centric marketing that treats your customers as individuals and delivers returns your business will be proud of.