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BK Blog Post
Customer-centric marketing is about creating a loyal customer base, who feel that your brand perfectly fits their needs. The success comes in when they become advocates that bring you new customers by talking about your product and your services to their friends.
The customer is king is not a new idea. And yet it’s an idea that a lot of businesses lose track off. They end up seeing customers only as a means to an end. As the saying, I started with suggested that was never really seen as a good idea.
Today, however, it’s become an even worse one. After all, with most country’s markets as globalized and woven together, people have more choice today than they ever did. And when they’ve got more choice that means that if they’re not happy with your service, they’re far more likely to look elsewhere.
That said, you have to draw the line somewhere. After all, you can’t just give your product away – at least not if you want to stay in business. For that reason today we’re going to explore how you can have customer centric marketing and still succeed.
The first step towards having an effective customer-centric marketing strategy is to give them the one thing that they really want that won’t actually cost you much to give away. That is information. Nowadays when we talk about giving away information we talk about creating content for your users.
That alone is not enough, however. There are plenty of content creators out there who don’t think about their customers at all. For them, their content is all about selling their product. This strategy might work to some extent. The problem is, that’s not really what consumers are after. They don’t just want to know why your product is better than everybody else’s (as if they don’t realize you’ve got a vested interest there). Instead, they’re far more interested in all the information around it.
So, if you’re trying to really draw your customers in by focusing on them, give them what they want. Sure, that means explaining what product is better and why, but it also means telling them how they can make sure that when they buy your product they can use it for longer. Even better, tell them about everything else around your niche that they might want to know about.
# Know the customer
Now, that’s a lot easier said than done. What do they want to know about? To know that you’ve got to know them. There are several strategies to that end. All of them, however, involve asking questions and studying behavior.
There are many ways that you can do that. For example, you might want to rely on submitting them to surveys. That isn’t the only way to gather information about them, however. You see, so much of our behavior online is being tracked. And though that’s scary for the customer, that is great news for you.
For example, you can find out what kind of sites your customers like. All you need to do is go to Facebook Ad Manager, hit the audience button and define your audience (e.g. they like your website, they’re women, and they have children). Then Facebook will tell you what other pages they like. And as most pages are dedicated to specific themes, that will teach you a great deal about what they’re interested in.
Similarly, you can use services like Inspectlet to see exactly how people are using your website. In this way, you’ll have an idea of what they’re looking for, where they’re clicking and how far they scroll. In this way, you’ll be able to reorganize things so that they’ll more easily find what they’re looking for (rather than what you want them to find).
And then, of course, there’s Google Analytics and its ilk. These will show you where people are actually going on your page and where they’re dropping off. In this way, you’ll have a much better idea of what content is actually interesting to them, which you can then use to get a better idea of what content you want to produce more of in the future.
Once you’ve got content that is specifically geared towards your users (and you don’t need the entire Encyclopedia Britannica online before you start down this road – a handful of articles will do) then it’s time to start hitting up influencers.
What are influencers? It’s a catch-all term for people that have large networks and can influence them (hence the name) towards looking at products, websites and the like. The great thing about influencers is that if you can pull them onboard, then they’ll ping their audience about your content (and indirectly about your product). That means that you don’t just have access to your own followers, but theirs as well.
Note that there are many influencers out there. When starting out, you might not immediately want to start aiming for the highest and the best. Most of the time they’re hard to attract (And often they’ll even want to be paid). Better is to target micro-influencers. These people might only have a few thousand followers, but often they are far more engaged and far more responsive.
What’s more, as they don’t yet have egos the size of small planetoids, they’re more easily pulled into your orbit. You can, for example, ask them to test your product, give them the chance to write for your website (paid or otherwise) or in other ways engage with them. In this way, you’ll be able to rapidly pull in an audience for customer-centric content.
# Take it up a notch
Now that you’re drawing in a bit of an audience, it is time to push it up a notch. You’re not longer just looking for content that is pretty good but instead wants to focus on creating content that is absolutely amazing.
Why didn’t you want to do this before? Well, you could have. The problem, however, is that often amazing content won’t get you any traction before you have a bit of an audience. You know how everybody talks about going viral? Well, that doesn’t just happen. You’ve got to have a lot of groundwork in place before that’s possible. That’s because attention moves in waves. The moment a wave hits zero, however, and you don’t have an audience, then that’s it. It’s dead. That means that if you start off building up amazing content there’s a chance you’re just throwing money down the drain.
Once you’ve got a bit of an audience, however, then you’re in a much better position for your great content to actually get somewhere. So this is the time to start combing through writing company reviews to find the right company for you, such as Essays Solutions, so that you can take your content to the next level.
Then you start building a community. Of course, you’ve constantly given people the opportunity to comment and reflect on what you’re doing (hopefully you’ve already been getting some success in this regard). Now, however, it’s time to really start building things up.
There are many ways to do this. You can ask direct questions, create quizzes and competitions or – if you’ve already got enough commenting going on – open up boards where people can share, comment and in other ways talk and share. Why do you do this?
For two reasons:
All this will add up to the one thing that will make certain that your customer-centric marketing strategy will work and that is advocacy. ‘Advocacy,’ some of you now mutter, ‘but I’ve been advocating my product all along’. That’s not the kind of advocacy I’m talking about, however. I’m talking about the kind that actually matters nowadays and that is the advocacy of your customers to their friends. Even as the trust in traditional forms of marketing dies down, we’re finding that word of mouth still works. And that is what you’re playing for when you create great customer-centric marketing.
So, as the saying goes, ‘if you take care of your current customers then they’ll take care of your new customers’ and that is – with a few caveats – largely true. What’s more, the customers you retain are far more valuable anyway. So work on giving your customers what they’re looking for and they’ll make sure that everybody else will know it as well.
Once you get this happening. Once you’ve got a base of customers that are happy and enthusiastic and your customer base is growing because your current customers are talking to everybody else, then you know that you’ve got a customer-centric marketing strategy that is actually successful. Then your customer gets to be king and you get to the emperor.