Interacting with your customers doesn’t end at the point of sale, or the close of a contract. Your customers will carry insight on their experience with your business with them. Tapping into the insight and utilizing it can help grow your business, providing you with key information on where you need to improve, what you’ve done well, and what steps you need to take next.
Anyone Can Gather Data, But How Do You Use It?
You can send out surveys, have the customer leave a review, or any other number of techniques to generate consumer insight. The real question is, do you know how to use it? You can have all of the information in the world, but if it isn’t utilized properly, it’s only worth the paper it’s printed on.
Look at your online reputation, such as your social media accounts. Are the majority of your reviews positive, or negative? Either will require specific attention. If the majority are positive, focus on what the customers liked about their experiences. If the majority of your reviews are negative, pinpoint any consistencies in negative experiences.
Were they focused on poor customer service, a sub-par service or product, or something else? Growing your business means fixing issues as they happen, rather than putting them off until a later date. This shows a customer you care about their experience.
Compare your product’s performance across all markets. Are your customers receiving your brand differently in certain geographical areas? Does your product meet the needs of customers in one area, but not another?
Focus on what your product is actually doing for the customer, and what they like and dislike about it. Surveys are a great way to gather this information. Sending a post-purchase survey and paying attention to the information the customer provides you can be invaluable.
Consumer Surveys Can Do The Heavy Lifting
A consumer survey is one of the best ways to get into your customer’s mind and utilize their feedback for growth. The customer ultimately knows what’s best for them, and what they want out of a product. It’s essential to access this database through surveys. Surveys can be delivered in a variety of ways, from emailed surveys to using a service like Google consumer surveys.
Now that you’ve sent out your surveys, what do you do with the information?
First, look at where the negative information is coming from. Decide if it’s centralized in a certain demographic or about a certain product, feature, or service. That will tell you immediately where improvement needs to be made.
Next, look at what your customers responded well to. Did you have great customer service, but maybe lacked on the product features? It may be time to take another look at your product. Did your product perform well? Was the customer service lacking? It may be time to retrain your staff on customer interaction.
Creating A Better Marketing Strategy
Marketing is arguably the most important part of your business next to customer service. You can have the greatest product or service in the world, but without a solid marketing strategy, you’re driving a car with no gasoline.
Utilizing your consumer insights to create a better marketing strategy is simple. You identify trends (good and bad) that your customers are talking about, collect and engage with your users’ information, (check those emails!) and figure out who’s talking positively about your brand that has significant influence.
Perhaps you’ve got a celebrity or someone important who loves your brand. You can offer them an advertising contract. Maybe you’ve noticed customers talking about a specific issue with your ads not matching what’s being offered. Time to amend your marketing campaign.
Compare With Your Competitors
Beating your competitors in the ever-increasing competitiveness of the business world can be tough in and of itself, but if you lack customer insight and the skills to utilize it to your benefit, your competitors may already have a leg up.
Research your competition and identify trends in customer complaints. Are your customers complaining about similar problems with your brand? There’s an opportunity to outshine your competitors. Fix the problem with your brand, and you’ll likely notice more customers showing up to buy your product. Why? Because you listened to them and fixed the problem when your competitors failed to do so.
Now That You’ve Got Your Information, Leverage It
You’ve collected your data; surveys and reviews and competitors’ insights. Now it’s time to leverage it. Once you have everything in place, you can start to synthesize a sort of persona for your customer base. What sites do they visit? What activities do they enjoy? What are some other products they use? Once you’ve figured this out, you can begin to target your audience with product-specific ads on their favorite channels.
Does your customer base spend a lot of time at gyms and fitness clubs? Time to get some ads put up on their websites or social media pages. Which devices do your customers spend their time on? A phone ad can be vastly different than an internet ad for a desktop. Tailor your marketing strategy to your customer’s device of choice for the most effective campaign.
Most of all, be adaptable. Learn, strategize based on your customers’ actions and preferences. People are a dynamic factor, ever-changing and finding new preferences. Your business must be able to adapt at an equal pace and explore new horizons and marketing techniques when necessary.
Information is useless if it is not utilized. Your consumer insights provide you with valuable information about the people buying your products or services, the people who pay for everything you do.
Listen to their voice, tailor your business to fit their needs. Your goal is to keep the customers happy so they keep coming back, and hopefully, bring their friends with them the next time.