Find the Trends Connecting
Your Customers to Your Brand
How to Gather and Analyze Customer Data
Market trends continue to change as the focus remains around the same consumers that businesses are in fierce competition to attract. It’s a competition that has led us all on a chase for feedback from customer interactions that have become hard to track down and follow.
The key is understanding your clientele, knowing who they are, how they prefer to shop, and what they think and feel about your product or service.
Getting to know this information about your customers is tough but creating a Customer Insight Strategy can help strengthen your business by retrieving the knowledge needed to improve products and services you provide.
What is the Customer Insight Strategy?
Customer insight is a strategy that helps clarify any trends in relation to consumer behaviors and a product or service. The purpose is to realize what drives your consumers attitude and actions in order to find the connection between them and your brand.
Discovering their preferences, outlooks, and expectations provides the awareness you need to build a strategy around them to further enhance their faithfulness. By understanding what motivates their loyalty to your brand, you can focus on improving the quality and usefulness of a product or service with the aim of gaining and retaining customers as well as increasing future sales.
Why create a Customer Insight Strategy?
It’s difficult to cater to one person if you don’t know what their expectations are. It is even more difficult to cater to multiple people if they all have different expectations. So how can you confidently provide a service to all of your customers if you don’t know what they want? If you think you’re providing a product/service that customers deem beneficial, how do you actually know if it’s serving its purpose?
It’s important to learn how things affect your consumers. It can help you provide more efficient marketing and create better product differentiation. Knowing what your customers preferences are will help decrease your marketing spending because you won’t be wasting money offering products that are irrelevant to them. Knowing what features your customers favor will help you gain an advantage over what your competitors are offering because you can further develop product improvements.
Learning about your customers is important but you won’t know that information because oftentimes it requires you to ask for it.
Asking the right questions helps if you’re out of the loop and building a defined strategy can support your business by focusing on what you need to know in order to make more customer-centric decisions. Those decisions can help grow your business by focusing on key metrics such as product development, customer experience, customer retention, and customer growth. Gathering data from utilizing the strategy can assist you with providing better overall experiences and the ability to tailor those experiences to each customer’s expectation.
How to build a Customer Insight Strategy
Before you begin to build your Customer Insight Strategy you need to consider these key factors:
- What is the main objective of your Customer Insight Strategy?
- What is your projected deadline to accomplish this objective?
- What business limitations will you be working against? (budget/cost, time, and scope)
Once you have answered the questions above, consider following these steps:
- Put together a team to manage the Customer Insight Strategy
- Construct a Customer Journey Map
- Design the surveys you will use to gather the customer insights needed for your strategy
- Leverage your platforms to deliver the surveys and gather feedback
- What data is gathered through the Insight Strategy?
Data used for the Customer Insight Strategy consists of 3 components:
Market Research – Research the competitors in your industry. Get to know their line of products, the quality they provide, and their customer’s sentiments. This is important for customer acquisition and retention.
Customer Research – Find out what you want to discover about your customer’s needs and product desires. Know what type of customer’s you are dealing with so you know how to market to them individually.
Customer Analysis – Figure out who your target market is. Know what demographic you are intending to reach with your brand and products. Cater the questions to them so they are inclined to take your survey.
When creating a customer insight strategy, keep these 4 constituents in mind:
- Gather insights from more than one source. Social listening through social media channels is important but don’t just rely on social media comments as your only resource for insight. Gather direct feedback using focus groups, survey analysis, direct mail, polls, and interviews. The more sources the better. This will help decrease any biased factors and will allow you to reach different customer demographics.
- Separate the insights gathered that are not practical in regards to your strategy. Some feedback given may be in concern of things that are out of your control. For example, someone might complain about the parking situation at your business. If your location is in a busy area where parking is limited then those circumstances are out of your control. It is not ideal to add those types of insights to your strategy if there is not much you can do to change things.
- Insights gathered need to reflect actions that can be taken to effectively change consumer behaviour in relation to your product or service. Using the same example about the feedback regarding the parking situation. Would focusing time and energy on improving parking at your business change the way customers feel about your product or service? Would they be more inclined to shop more at your location or purchase more of your products? Would this help retain customers or bring in new ones?
- Any changes made to your products and services need to be of mutual benefit to both your company and your customers. In other words, if an improvement to your product or service is made to satisfy customers it needs to be cost effective enough to benefit your business as well. Weigh out your cost/benefit ratios. If an adjustment needs to be made, analyze the price, measure the lifetime value of your customer base and make sure it fits within your customer acquisition costs as well.
Customer Insight Strategies are a successful method for business development and utilizing these strategies will help you reap the benefits of brand loyalty. Many barriers to send out surveys and collect the data may arise. You may also find it difficult to gather quality customer feedback because of low participation and un-insightful responses. If you face any roadblocks, don’t let them discourage you from accomplishing your objective. Trial and error is key. Keep trying until you develop a strategy that works.
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