One of the central golden rules of business is to get to know the customer inside out. Of course, this rarely means that you actually spend time getting to know each individual customer. That would be impossible – but what is possible, and highly recommended, is to get such a good idea of your average customer that you can know intimately who they really are, and what it is that makes them tick. Moreover, in some instances it will actually be necessary to also gather a little information about individuals too. Let’s look at some of the things you should try to discover about your customer, and why.
One of the most valuable pieces of data you can possibly mine is that relating to your customers’ shopping habits. There are many ways to find this data if you are keen on it, and businesses spend a lot of time and money working hard to get this as often as they can. One of the most routine ways to do this is to set up some kind of loyalty scheme, so that you can see what they spend their money on and when. But you can also find out much of the same information using resources which are publicly available, and many of these resources are often free to obtain.
With enough of an understanding of how and when your customers spend their money, you can tweak your own marketing efforts to make sure that they spend more and more money with your enterprise. Clearly, this is beneficial, and the real bonus here is that they won’t feel intruded, because they probably won’t be aware of how much you know about them. It’s important never to store data relating to specific individuals – but you can discern a lot from the overall data, so that is worth bearing in mind.
Their True Identity
There will be many occasions when you do need to have specific information relating to an individual customer. More often than not, this piece of information will be their actual identity, and this will almost always be in the name of protection. Usually, you will be protecting your own business from fraud, but in a sense you are also protecting your customer base on the whole too. So how can you be sure you are being given the correct information?
There are a number of ways to go about it. One increasingly popular method is to use an online identity-verification service. These are powerful because they offer you the chance to instantly discover the verification status of an official identity document. Clearly, there is much to be said for that. But such a service will not always be available, particularly if you are operating in a situation in which you have no access to the Internet temporarily, as can happen in any business. In this case, you will want to make sure that you are asking for a number of documents, and spending a good amount of time checking them over. Having the proof for identity can mean that you feel a lot safer with whatever process your business is carrying out, so this is an important thing to bear in mind.
Starting to get into the deeper psychology of marketing, one of the central things you should always try to discern is your customers’ motivations. Put in the usual vernacular, this will relate to how they ‘tick,’ and it is a useful thing for your marketing teams to be aware of as they work towards trying to draw in as many more people as possible. It is also hugely helpful when it comes to attempting to bring about return customers.
Essentially, you need to really delve into the profile of the average individual who buys your product or uses your service. From this profile, you can soon easily discover what it is that they are primarily motivated by, and you can then incorporate this understanding into the way that you promote your business. To a certain degree, you will do this kind of thing unconsciously, but having something of a conscious attitude towards it too could also help you to improve your marketing greatly. The more time you spend figuring out their motivations, the more you can come up with clever, unique and creative ways to make use of that information. This is what the biggest companies do to get where they are, so you might want to think about doing it too.
With the preceding information taken on board, there is no reason you won’t be able to provide your customer with a better service while also improving your marketing for good.