It’s time to utilize deep customer knowledge

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With the increasing use of customer relationship software some companies hold more customer information than other companies. Still, it appears to be quite rare for companies to use this information to deepen their customer relationships. I am suggesting you use micro-segmentation to help pinpoint customer preferences and styles. This will enable you to formulate a customer-value metric which will assist to identify the customers and segments that deserve the most investment. I also suggest that more attention should be paid to triggers and major life events, this will help to identify and anticipate customers’ needs.

Deep customer knowledge is multifaceted and requires a multifaceted approach, the trick is to integrate various forms of customer reactions and comments (of various types), transactional data and some intuition.

What customers think can be found by undertaking focus groups and surveys. However, what they say and what they really believe are often different. Customers buying patterns can be found by analysing your transactional data, trends can be spotted in terms of what they have historically bought. What it doesn’t tell you is the reason why they bought, what they thought of the experience or what other options they considered.

Internal reports, benchmarks, and measurements will tell you as how your company is working but not if the processes in place are working your customers. These will inform you as how productive you are but not how effective.

Don’t get me wrong, all the above information is valuable. What makes it even more valuable is when you put them all together in a comparable way and you will start building a rich information set of resource and you can now seek to understand the linkages between them. With this deep customer knowledge you now have the ability to see the hidden messages.

Profound customer knowledge comes from integrating a variety of information sets. This is not an easy task; this will take quite a bit of planning, resourcing, and your will to do it. Analysing such rich customer information will help you to plan customer acquisition and retention strategies and this will enable you to revise and overhaul your systems and processes to be in tune with the changing marketplace.

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