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Thought Leadership

Growing stronger together

Growing stronger together

Growing stronger together: Customer insights for brand success

Some companies still view their relationships with customers as a one-way street, but we're here to show you how to transform it into a two-way avenue. How can your customers contribute to your growth?

Growth can be defined in various ways: expanding your company, achieving better financial results, increasing market share, and more. In this article, we will zero in on a fundamental aspect of any business—its products. How can you achieve growth by enhancing your existing products and creating new ones?

Imagine you're a doctor. A patient comes in for an appointment, sits down, you both exchange glances, and minutes pass in silence (a bit awkward, right?). Then, the patient stands up and leaves. What are the chances that you can accurately diagnose their condition, provide the right treatment, and genuinely help them? Realistically, the chances are close to zero.

Regrettably, this scenario resembles how many companies operate today. Like that doctor, they may possess intelligence and ample resources, but they often fail to maximise their potential simply because they don't engage in meaningful conversations with their customers.

Now, let's delve into the methods we believe organisations must embrace to unlock meaningful customer insights and drive reciprocal growth.

#1 Customer research
Understanding the 'what' is just the tip of the iceberg. To uncover the 'why' behind your customers' actions, you need to engage in continuous customer research. Regular interactions are crucial to staying in sync with your customers. This involves methods like focus groups, interviews, questionnaires, and surveys to unearth valuable insights into customers' motivations, behaviours, and outcomes.

For instance, find out why people choose your brand, how your product addresses their specific needs, their interactions with your brand, and any pain points in their experience. Don't limit research to existing customers; potential customers can provide insights that expand your target audience.

#2 Customer development
Incorporating customer input in developing your future offerings is essential. Co-creating with users ensures you're building products that work, not just products that might work. Make customer development an integral part of your R&D process. It allows you to uncover valuable insights, validate hypotheses, and embrace a Lean Start-up approach. Through experiments and trials, this process helps refine initial ideas into defined products.

#3 Sentiment analysis
In the world full of word-of-mouth, companies that don’t look into their customer’s feedback are missing out on a lot. Customer sentiment analysis is the sorting and processing of customer feedback using machine learning automation. Essentially, it is the use of advanced software tools to better understand how your customers feel. Like direct research, it could uncover pain-points and present opportunities for product or experience development.

#4 CX analytics
Beyond understanding the 'why,' you also need to focus on the more practical 'what' to drive your business forward. While acronyms like SCAT, CES, CRR, and AHT might seem intimidating, you don't need to become an expert in all of them. What's crucial is adopting customer analytics throughout your organisation and establishing numeric key performance indicators (KPIs) at different stages of the customer journey.

For instance, a webpage on your new website version with a remarkably high bounce rate might indicate an issue – analytics are your diagnostic tool. In an organisational context, they function like essential vitamins, making your life easier. Analytics help identify and eliminate product friction and customer experience gaps, ultimately fuelling product growth and minimising customer churn.

Regardless of the method a company chooses, it is essential to build a workflow around bringing those insights learnt through research or analytics to life, so their customers see a continuously evolving product.

And remember, “whoever gets closer to the customer wins”!

Author: Inna Shabardina
Expertise:  Strategy, CX, Service Design
Connect:  LinkedIn | This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

If you liked this article, why not check out the previous articles in this mini-series: 
1.  How to live & breathe customer-centricity
2. How companies win customer hearts