The bottomline is the only thing that most CFO’s and CEO’s care about nowadays. But what impacts your bottomline the most?
Sales! That’s right. Revenue and sales are generated by the customers. But the only way to drive sales is to have an incredible brand and story. Without them, customer’s won’t feel inclined to engage or buy from your company.
If you don’t know your audience, you’re basically just throwing things against the wall and seeing what sticks. Not only does this lead to a lot of wasted effort and resources, but it also just doesn’t gel with what the modern consumer has come to expect.
People like working with brands that tell a personal, exciting story. In this article, we take a look at how knowing your customers can impact your brands story.
In the age of social media, the company/consumer brand dichotomy has become symbiotic. People form their personal brands, in part, based on where they shop, and what businesses they support. Similarly, businesses form their brand in part by who shops with them.
You can’t exactly force this relationship. You can, however, play into it by understanding who your customers are, and how they interact with your brand. In knowing this, you can tell a story that compliments the consumers’ idea of who you are, and, by extension, who they are as well.
Creating A Human Side
Knowing your customers also establishes a human element to your brand story—particularly when you can weave that information into your marketing materials. Spotify did a very good job of this when they began making billboards that were targeted directly toward “specific” users.
For example, they famously made a billboard directed at the person in San Francisco who “listened to Hamilton 500 times last year.”
Did a person in San Franciso actually listen to Hamilton 500 times on Spotify last year?… Well, they probably did. However, this ad campaign wasn’t about Joe Smith who goes gaga for anything Lin-Manual Miranda puts out. It was the story of a company that knows what its demographic likes and how to articulate it.
They do the same thing on a more direct scale each year with custom playlists and “year in review” messages.
Customers like feeling that they are recognized, and they are happy to shop with brands that make a point of communicating on a personal level. Without a personal relationship, however, you can’t really do that. A billboard dedicated to “People who like Hamilton,” won’t sell subscriptions the same way as one that goes out to that very special someone in San Francisco with an obsession and too much time on his hands to pursue it.
Better Story Telling:
Finally, understanding your customers also just allows you to tell a better story. Even after you’ve decided on brand identity, you may not know how to frame it. Let’s say you’ve decided that you are the company that cares about the environment.
Great, right? Sure, but are you the company that recycles? Maybe you run zero-emission facilities? Maybe you’re saving the rainforest, zeroing in on low-impact supply chains or…
There are a lot of ors. It’s possible you are going to do all of those things. However, a promotional video is only around sixty seconds on average, and if the material isn’t clicking, most people will only watch a small fraction of it.
You need to be able to identify the information that your customer base wants to hear, and figure out a way to weave it into a compelling story.
Data is King
Unless you run a local business, you probably aren’t going to be able to maintain a personal relationship with most of your customers. In the modern world of international business, it’s not at all uncommon to have a customer roster filled with people you will never even lay eyes on.
In a world of digital commerce, data is king. With the right information sets, you can get a vivid idea of who your customers are, and use that information to tell the perfect brand story.
Customer experience is everything. By knowing the people you are catering to, you can personalize your operations, and make adjustments that add up significantly over time. Data processing and implementation make it easier than ever to accomplish this.
Remember: if you don’t personalize your operations, someone else will. Providing a personalized customer experience is quickly transitioning from being a business advantage to a requisite.