Impact: Going Deeper Than Data

By Lorrie Bryan, TGI’s Marketing Hour, Volume 1 Issue Five: September/October 2015

With a few clicks, the right data-software combo can readily tell you who your best customer is and what products or services he has bought from you in the past A couple of more clicks, and you can predict with a great accuracy what they’re likely to buy from you in the future, how much and how often. With a few more strategic clicks, you can capture and analyze data that then helps you create a tailored, automated marketing plan that provides your customer with engaging messaging that’s personalized for increased relevance and effectiveness.

You don’t even have to pick up a phone and call him. 

But you can click-click-click until your fingers ache; search the expansive internet heavens; gaze intently into your super-duper, 32-inch, professional-grade, ultra-high-definition monitor; crank up the latest Voice of the Customer program; dive into social media; and still not understand your customers sufficiently.

If you really want to know what keeps your best customers up at night, what’s on their wish lists, and what you can do to help their businesses succeed and their dreams come true, try an old-fashioned, pre-information-age practice. It’s called conversing, personal interaction and visiting- and it can make a deep impact.

“We go directly to our customers and see their actual situation and needs first-hand. Then we can propose changes and solutions that more satisfy them.” –David Stevens, Senior VP, American Mitsuba Corp.

10 Ways to Make an Impact on Key Customers

  1. Create a Customer Advisory Board and invite your best customers to join.
  2. Look for opportunities to visit with your best customer at his place of business.
  3. Invite your best customers to visit your facility and show them how you operate.
  4. Provide your best customers with valuable content on an ongoing basis.
  5. Customize your products or services to add unique value for your best customers.
  6. Be responsive and readily available to your best customers.
  7. Offer remarkable customer service that exceeds their expectations.
  8. Anticipate their needs and be solution oriented rather than product oriented.
  9. Know their industries, know their companies and understand what is important to them personally.
  10. Be authentic, take a genuine interest in your customers, and facilitate their success.

 

“Businesses don’t have relationships with businesses – people have relationships with people.” –Dimitri Kapelianis, Associate Marketing Professor, University of New Mexico

 

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