Monday, 19 January 2009

This year marketers should prioritise Delighting existing customers

We are living through extremely challenging times.

It is hard to believe that less than 12 months ago we were in a period of abundance. Today we face a future of pretty bleak austerity.

So how should brands plot their survival as consumers are dramatically changing their spending habits?

What brand experiences should be protected as marketing budgets are being cut?

One thing to protect is your efforts with existing customers. It is well known that it is much more cost effective to keep existing customers than recruit new ones. Existing customers should become the primary focus for brand organisations.

I came across a report from RSR Research entitled: 2009 – The Year of the Existing Customers.

They make two points that really work for me:

1. Know your (existing) customers well

Retailers have got good at collecting information about their customers through loyalty cards, etc. It is vital to use this insight smartly to work out how to deliver customised brand experiences that delight customers.

2. Pay attention to customers wherever they are

It has become more important than ever to truly listen to your customers. Ignore what they are saying at your peril. The internet has given consumers an extremely powerful platform to talk to others if you deliver poor experiences.

So, as you consider marketing plans for this year, and beyond, a good start point would be to think hard about how you can delight with your existing customer service processes. Winning the delight part of the PDD framework should give you a huge competitive advantage.

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