Here is the simple truth – the more you know about your customers, the more successful you will be as a marketer or small business owner.
- Knowing your existing customers will help you find more people like them
- Knowing your existing customers will help you create products they want
- Knowing your existing customers will help you provide better service
What should you know about your customers? In short, as much as you can.
You should know the things that relate to your business – how they found out about you, why they chose you over your competitors, how they use your product or service and whether it solves their problems, how they purchased, when and how much.
You should also know things that don’t relate directly to their interaction with your business. You should know things like where they live, how old are they, what do they do for a living, what are their hobbies and interests, where do they get their news, where do they shop, what else do they spend money on.
The world of big data, machine learning, and artificial intelligence will allow companies of all sizes to take advantage of information to improve their business. Marketers will have new ways of reaching out to potential customers with proven ROI. And with more data, those efforts will be more fruitful.
If you don’t know enough about your customers now, today is a great time to start learning. Collect data through user behavior tracking, focus groups and studies, surveys and questionnaires, interviews and direct customer outreach. Marketing departments should put someone in charge of customer knowledge and data analysis.
You may be surprised by how much information you already have on your customers. Start asking questions internally, streamline and protect that information for later use, find the holes and begin to fill them.