For your customers, the one thing that matters more than anything else is their experience. Understanding your target audience’s needs and desires is crucial when planning your marketing strategy. For these reasons, businesses and organisations are increasingly switching to customer-centric marketing strategies.
Customer-centric marketing focuses on customer experience and the needs of its target audience. The method puts customers at the heart of your business or organisation. It works to build trust and legitimacy with your target audience.
The term “customer-centric” may sound like a fancy term for what is essentially basic advertising. The difference is a move in focus, from what is best for the company to what is best for your customers. As a result, successful customer-centric marketing requires a deeper understanding of your customer’s needs.
A customer-centric marketing strategy creates products and services around the customer’s needs. It starts with customer research to understand their jobs, challenges and goals. Then, the organisation creates products and services to help the customer complete their job and overcome the challenges to achieve their goals. A customer-centric marketing strategy is the opposite of a product-centric marketing strategy which starts with your product and creates strategies to sell that product to consumers.
Customer-centric marketing doesn’t focus on the products or services you’re offering, profits, or revenue model. To be truly customer-centric, your marketing must focus on your customers’ needs. How would they want to interact with your business?
For example, if you’re offering a service for elderly people but are online-only, your target audience may have trouble accessing information. While offering a service online may be cheaper, you may have more luck setting up a direct phone line or opening brick-and-mortar sites for your customers to visit.
Another example is a clothing retailer. Although e-commerce has been steadily increasing in popularity in recent years, brick-and-mortar stores offer the opportunity to see and try on items, something certain demographics prefer. It all comes down to your target audience and what they need. The important part of customer-centric marketing is to see things from your customer’s perspectives.
Building long-term relationships and trust with your customers is also crucial. Many businesses focus on generating leads without considering a long-term strategy beyond getting their customers through the doors. Avoiding these short-term wins and focusing on long-term value will build brand awareness. This can result in a deeper, more loyal relationship with your customers.
Implementing a customer-centric strategy doesn’t happen overnight – and it certainly won’t happen without a lot of hard work. Customer-centric marketing puts your customers at the centre of your organisation. It uses a blend of basic common sense and intuition and data about your target audience and their behaviour. Although it can be tricky, customer-centric marketing does pay off. With the sweeping changes brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic, there’s never been a better time to make the change to a customer-focused strategy.
So how do you go about implementing a shift toward customer-centric marketing?
If your business or organisation is already well-established, you should have a good idea of your target audience. However, if you are relatively new, you may still be working out who this crucial group of people is and how to reach them.
Your target audience is essentially the intended audience of your product or service. Targeting certain people doesn’t mean you must exclude others who don’t meet your criteria. It simply means you can focus your marketing message on the right group of people. Finding your target audience can also help your marketing team craft a tone of voice that will resonate with your customer.
You will need to see things from your audience’s perspective. Get to know your customer through and through, from basic data such as age and gender demographics to their likes and dislikes.
If you’d like a cheat code for the different demographics of shoppers, check out our article about in-store campaigns for your target audience.
Customer experience is particularly important for brick-and-mortar sites. Physical sites are finding it difficult to get customers in the door as the popularity of online shopping increases. For brick-and-mortar sites to work in unison with the accessibility of e-commerce, customer experience should be of the utmost importance. Brand awareness and consistency are also crucial.
Customer-centric marketing is the key to getting visitors through your doors and turning them into regulars. There are many advantages brick-and-mortar sites have over online shopping. This includes the ability for customers to interact with products and services, chat with real staff and enjoy the experience of being there in person.
A large part of customer-centric marketing is brand consistency. Brand consistency is synonymous with the visual aspects of your marketing. It’s also important for building trust with your customers, cultivating brand awareness and becoming instantly recognisable. Brand consistency should be a priority if you hope to foster a relationship with your customers and create a community.
Brand consistency can be difficult to master across multiple brick-and-mortar locations but can be made simpler by employing digital tools such as marketing management software. Colateral can streamline your organisation’s shift to customer-centric marketing by creating an easier way of planning, critiquing and approving the visual merchandising projects across your store estate.
If you’d like to learn more about ensuring brand consistency in every location, we share tactics, strategies and insights with retail marketers every week via our newsletter. Sign up today.
If you’re looking to revolutionise your customer’s experience and streamline visual merchandising, there’s never been a better time to ditch paper spreadsheets and printed installation guides.
Colateral’s in-store campaign management software takes the hassle out of in-store marketing and visual merchandising. You can streamline the process of creating, approving and distributing your marketing materials across your brick-and-mortar sites. You can simplify the process of creating your in-store campaigns. You can give your employees in your head office and shop floor an easier way to collaborate and communicate. You can collect the data you need about your campaigns to improve your marketing. Employing the assistance of a marketing management tool can help shift your organisational culture and merchandising to a more customer-orientated focus. Customer-centric marketing has never been so simple.