World over, we are facing a tumulus situation and businesses of all sizes across geographies face a tough road ahead. With the increasing cost of customer acquisition and decreasing new-user growth, companies must rethink their marketing strategy and goals. However, this is an excellent opportunity to create a customer-centric approach, that can help not just in the near future but also create a brand value that creates a lasting impression.
If you are looking to rethink your business approach, let’s explore how a customer-centric marketing strategy can help you achieve your business goals:
What does it mean to be customer-centric?
Most businesses claim to be customer-centric; however, a truly customer-centric organization understands the customer’s needs and puts customer satisfaction as the primary objective, more than profits, revenue and other parameters. This approach places the customer at the core of the business strategy, and this allows your organization to adapt to changing customer requirements.
The customer-centric approach helps to build long-term relationships and bring out a positive experience for your customers. And despite the perception, customer-centric companies tend to do better than those that are not focused on their customers. According to Deloitte’s research, “Client-centricity is the most important factor in a successful business digitalization since client-centric companies are 60% more profitable compared to companies not focused on the customer”.
How can your brand be more customer-centric?
The customer-centric business approach needs to be ingrained in one’s overall strategy and thought process. To do this, brands must follow a set guideline to create a culture of customer focus. Some of the ways this can be done are:
Be in the customer’s shoes
Most marketers and salespeople know how to sell to a customer, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they understand what their customer truly wants. Start reading up on the market research, latest news on the industry that you serve and know how your customers can be better served. To be in the customer’s shoes, you need to think like your customer. This will inevitably help you realize the value you bring to your customers and how you can serve them better.
Develop products and services that address their problems
Once you know what your customer wants, start ensuring your products or services deliver that value. Although this may seem simple, most brands tend to hold back on their key features to prioritize margins and keep budgets in checks. While profitability is an essential factor, customers appreciate brands that provide more than just what’s promised.
Focus on customer loyalty over retention
Most brands think if a customer keeps buying from you, it means you have served him well. However, that may not always be the case. To create loyal customers, you must create an impact on your overall brand. Loyalty ensures your customers come to you and think of you whenever they need something you are known for. Retention, on the other hand, requires a different approach, requiring you to keep negotiating every time you are nearing the end of your contract. Make loyalty your focus and see the retention happens more effectively.
How to create a customer-centric marketing strategy?
Once you have a customer-centric business approach, it is time to align your marketing strategy to it. To do so, here are some easy tips to get you started:
Market research is key
To know that you are genuinely customer-focused, you need to get actionable data that proves it. Market research is a great way to understand this. Businesses can leverage their connections to get customer inputs or use available data from renowned publications and research companies. This will help to know the market, what the customer wants, as well as how they are currently served.
Focus on simplicity & usability of your product or service
While your product may be great at delivering the customer what they need, it may not be as effective if it has too many features that the customer may not require or is not user friendly. Ensure you prioritize ease of use and simplicity for your services or products, so the customer doesn’t just get the value they want, they also enjoy it.
Sell an experience; not a product or service
Your business goal may be to generate a specific revenue or make a sale, but recognize that your customers have purposes of their own. Align your goals with your customer goals and watch how you get a lot more success. To do this, make sure you are selling an absolute value to a customer, and not just pushing a product or service.
Feedback is essential
Once you have won a customer, do not forget them altogether. The key to customer retention and building brand loyalty is communication with the customer. Make sure you take customer feedback seriously and be available for your customers whenever they need you. Customer feedback is critical to creating a customer-focused brand and ensures you stay updated with what your customers truly want.
The most effective marketing strategies use a customer-centric approach in not just their marketing, but every department, every aspect of your business should be focused on the sole purpose of creating optimal customer experiences. Ultimately, every company will claim to be customer-centric, but very few enterprises create value such that their customers are the ones to say it!