8 min to read
A Customer-Centric Approach: Why Putting the Customer First is Key to Success
Customers come first!
Around this belief revolves the philosophy of the Customer-Centric Approach, which can bring potential growth to your company.
An unhappy customer is one that you can be sure will never return to your business, while a happy one can even multiply them by telling their friends about your services or even leaving a good review that will build your fame as a company.
As social media platforms and other digital channels make the relationship between brand and customer more intimate, applying an approach that lets you please the demands of your customers and stay highly competitive in the digital era becomes necessary.
If you want to create this culture within your company, let us teach you how to do it with digital marketing and business management strategies.
Please keep reading!
What is a Customer-Centric Approach?
When discussing a Customer-Centric Approach, the main idea is to put your customer's needs and wants at the center of your business operations. Your target audience will be at the center, and all your business decisions and company structure should work to meet their wishes and exceed their expectations.
When your company is customer-centric, all your teams, from product development to customer service, are working to deliver a satisfying experience for all your customers.
This business philosophy has proved to have many benefits for companies as a Deloitte and Touche study found that customer-centric companies were 60% more profitable compared to companies that didn't focus on the customer, and 64% of companies with a customer-focused CEO are better than their competitors.
As we said previously, with social media's arrival, it becomes more imperative for companies to attend to customers' needs efficiently and seamlessly, as today, communication between them and your company is more straightforward.
With the immense competition among any niche, the winning business becomes the one that treats and gives a better customer experience, and not necessarily the one with the fanciest and most specialized products and services. Even more, a Super Office blog shows that 90% of companies compete solely based on customer experience, re-validating the importance of this approach.
For this, it is good to study data and analytics as these sources can give you better insights on giving a personalized experience for all of them. Streaming services like Netflix or e-commerce like Amazon achieve this personalization with the help of algorithms that gather all their behavior and deliver recommendations based on it.
As you deliver more extraordinary experiences with them and make customers feel heard by giving them what they want, the obvious outcome is that they become more loyal to your brand. With customer loyalty, these can recommend your services to others, growing your customer base and generating more brand awareness.
What is a Customer-Centric Approach?
The Advantages of a Customer-Centric Approach
At first sight, we could guess that as you focus more on customers, you can keep those you already have, which is even more important than having too many, but of course, you can also get new ones by recommendation or brand recognition.
Nonetheless, there are more benefits from applying this approach, so let's study all of them.
Improved Customer Experience
Before social media and the internet revolution, it was challenging for customers to get a personalized experience. Most businesses delivered the same format for all of them, and that was pretty much it.
But with technology, it is now easier than ever to deliver these customers products and recommendations that fix like a ring for them, as this approach lets us build a relationship with them that evolves and adapts to their needs. If you want to learn more, read our personalization and customer experience article.
Increase Brand Recognition
As people begin to notice that people end up satisfied with your customer experience, there's a really high chance that the voice will spread among their friends, the friends of their friends, and the list goes on even further.
Fortunately, digital channels allow users to share their experiences on all the platforms, telling how great it was and why they recommend you over others. Now, this can be a two-blade sword as a bad review could dirt your reputation, nonetheless, there are ways to handle it, but more on that further in the article.
Better Understanding of Your Target Audience
You may have done your research and also have an excellent smell for understanding customers and a sixth sense for business. All of these are great attributes for an entrepreneur; nonetheless, with technology and the customer approach, you can mix the instinct with actual data.
Ultimately, this knowledge mixture gives you a deeper insight into how your customers are behaving what they want and so you can give them what they need based on each of their necessities and wishes.
Increased Customer Loyalty
A happy customer will always come back. Today, customer ties aren't just transactional; it is more of a relationship. Similar to a durable relationship and one that is just a only one experience, when you know them as an individual, treat them as they like, and deliver the results they hope, it generates a comfortable feeling for them, something that will make them think twice before going to another company that might not know them as well as you do. Ultimately, by creating a deep relationship, you augment their loyalty to your customer-centric experience.
How to Apply a Customer-Centric Approach in your Company?
A customer-centric approach is a philosophy, and as such, the idea is that it becomes a contagious feeling within your company.
For starters, your company should already have a set of values and a personality that conveys this customer approach. When we look at luxury brands like Dior, there's a feeling it gives us; the same sentiment is a mindset for every team member.
Then, we add the secret and top ingredient to this approach: taking advantage of digital marketing capabilities and strategies to get the most business advantage from a centric approach and outmatching competitors. So, how can you do all of this?
Please keep reading!
Hire the Right Team
We start with your support: Your team.
Having a great human resource recruiter with that business and psychological sight is essential to casting all the right members for your team.
In this part of the process, you or your human resources representative can explain what the company is about, the values, and, particularly, the experience the company wants to offer.
Define your Customer Experience
What is your brand about?
Before defining what type of customer experience you want to deliver, you should have answered these questions.
Look, a great customer experience comes from more than giving excellent treatment and being polite and friendly.
Behind this approach, there should be a complete personality, a brand personality that leads you to how you treat customers while differentiating yourself from others.
This part of your business should be the first step, but if you already have a brand, but feel you do not have a personality behind you can either read more on the articles linked above or take some of these tips:
- Look for references: Nothing is original; most companies and ideas are a mixture of concepts you like. You can start building your brand based on other top companies you love, business personalities you admire, or even a fictional character. The idea is to grab the essence of all these references and mix them into your brand to create something solid and original.
- Focus on color psychology: Colors are more than tones; they are symbols that can subconsciously convey the feelings you want your company to evoke.
Once you built all your personality, you can base how your company will treat customers based on these brand personalities.
Use Customer Relationship Management Software
This part is where digital marketing starts showing its magic. Take a closer look.
If you are unfamiliar with this technology, a Customer Relationship Manager is a base of operations where you get to see all your customer interactions. This tool is of vital importance for any business within the digital world.
In this platform, you will give your customers a more sophisticated experience by attending to any of their needs more efficiently. This platform organizes all the data you need and gives you tools to follow all these situations quickly. If you are interested, click to learn the implementation process.
Within your CRM or social media analytics, you can see more accurately what your customers like and what things are not working. This is a beautiful tool for all businesses as it lets them depend less on the so-called "intuition" and more on the actual data.
When you study data, you can save a lot of money, time, and resources on strategies or digital channels that won't work and then start to deliver an approach centered on what your customers are responding to.
Remember, you must not give the same experience to every customer; it has to be personal.
Luckily, you don't have to go over one by one, and data gives you a shortcut by grouping your customers into categories depending on the services or products you offer.
With this approach, customers feel that you give a follow-up on their preferences as the analytics guide you on what you should deliver to each of them.
Create a Seamless Customer Journey
The digital era made everything as straightforward as possible.
Nowadays, you can do everything from the comfort of your smartphone or computer, but to achieve it, you have to build a seamless customer journey.
This journey has to go from an ad to a convert page without many extra steps in the middle so customers will stay caught up.
Also, you have to make sure that, on every step of the journey and in every channel or platform, your brand experience feels the same. For this, we recommend you follow an Omnichannel strategy.
Emphasize Customer Value.
There is a never-ending debate on quality vs. quantity. Nonetheless, we can give you some insights into it.
More on the B2B side of things, focusing on having quality customers is always more important than a bunch of them. Usually, B2B services are more expensive, so it is harder to get many customers, but it is better to have a few of them that are good than many that are not. Because of this, this article focuses significantly on building a great relationship with this decent amount of customers, as this keeps your business moving. If you waste too much energy on finding more and more, you might miss them.
Now, for e-commerce and B2C businesses, it is always good to expand your brand, as you depend more on sales. Nonetheless, it is always good to keep some loyal customers as this will also benefit your business.
How to Apply a Customer-Centric Approach in your Company?
How to Measure Customer-Centric Approach?
How do you know this approach is working? It isn't just something you could feel in your company's overall efficiency and energy; you also need data that backs up and gives you a guide on whether you are doing it right or not.
So, besides the data we already talked about, there are some other insights and values you want to focus on.
This rate represents the number of potential customers that convert into actual ones. When you measure it, you can see if your approach is having a good effect on new customers.
This essential value revolves around knowing why people abandon or keep coming to your business. When you identify these reasons, you can make the necessary modifications to your customer approach. Please read our article on Churn Rate.
Customer Lifetime Value
With CLV, you want to focus on how much customers spend during their entire relationship with your business. This lifetime goes from the first time they bought to when they either started buying or stopped doing it. To give you all the information you need on this metric, check our article on Customer Lifetime Value.
As you get more repeat customers, your centric approach offers clients the experience they want, so they keep repeating it.
Net Promoter Score
Then, one of the best ways to measure your approach success is by asking customers directly. For this, you can use an NPS, which is a chart from 1 to 10 where they can measure how great their experience was. You can implement this evaluation organically by putting it at the end of every purchase or service interaction or sending it by email. Also, make sure to add extra comment sections so you can get more detailed insights into their experience.
Customers are the center and the most significant sign of success for any business. That's why we all need to take care of their demands and let them know we have their backs on this business relationship. As with your business, if you need further access to managing your business or creating a successful digital marketing strategy to scale your sales, contact our professional team on Codedesign.