According to a report from Forrester, 93 percent of companies agree that buyers are more likely to spend money with brands they feel connected to. Having a deep understanding of one’s customers is important to putting together this connection.
But many companies are missing out on the advantages of connecting with customers. The same report from Forrester found that 56 percent of brands say their strategy is informed almost entirely by big data. Another study revealed that 53 percent of companies do not have time to collect customer feedback before their deliverables go live.
This over-reliance on big data, while ignoring human insights, results in products and services that miss the mark and hurt brand reputation and loyalty.
So, why are companies falling short when it involves understanding their customers?
Until recently, most marketers relied on old-school methods like surveys and questionnaires to collect feedback. Although these offers some insight, it’s mostly surface level. The same goes for giant data benchmarks like webpage clicks or the amount of products sold. This data can shed light on things like demand, but the nuances of why a product was (or wasn’t) successful are the critical information companies must be listening to.
Additionally, many businesses have come to believe gut instinct and past experiences to guide their strategy. They’ve seen what has worked within the past and assume it’ll work again. This “been there, done that” attitude fails to deal with consumers’ constantly evolving needs. The importance of customer understanding and empathy has come to a head in light of the pandemic. The world has changed drastically during a short amount of your time , and having a deep understanding of consumers , their feelings, attitudes, and emotions, is not any longer an option but an absolute necessity.
Getting the full picture
Customer expectations are also at an all-time high. To avoid bringing products to plug that do not fully meet their needs or—worse—lead to losing customers, businesses got to get the complete picture.
This includes understanding why customers do what they are doing , their circumstances and background, what they’re trying to find during a product or service, and therefore the role emotions play in making purchasing decisions.
The emotional connections brands have with their customers are often powerful. According to a Deloitte Digital report, 60 percent of loyal consumers use an equivalent sort of emotional language they’d use for family, friends, and pets when speaking of their favorite brands—words like love, happy and adore. Emotions are the force and performance behind consumerism and a key way customers connect with brands. Marketers got to make customers feel confident about their purchasing decisions, alleviate any concerns, and supply the foremost positive experience possible.
How to make it happen
It’s time for companies to start out bringing the important voice of their customers into the decision-making process. But how can they go about it?
It sounds simple, but there’s truly no replacement for talking directly with customers. The insight gleaned from conversing and listening first-hand is invaluable and can’t be replicated by any survey.
Some companies take this a step further by requiring “empathy hours” during which employees are liable for innovating, designing, building, and launching products spend a group amount of hours talking to customers per week. It doesn’t need to be hard or complicated—it are often as easy as setting aside time to mount Zoom a couple of times hebdomadally .
However businesses collect feedback, customer empathy must be a core value of the corporate and leaders stress its importance from the highest down. Additionally, marketers, developers, et al. involved in launching products should have ongoing education on the importance of connecting with customers and ways to try to to it.
In an increasingly data-driven world, the worth of slowing down and dealing to know and hear customers can’t be overstated. Companies that make this a priority stand to create and nourish the connections with customers that each business needs for fulfillment .