A difficult truth for business leaders is… once you work for a brand, you can no longer see that brand in the same way your customer does. Rarely, is your opinion of your brand representative of your customers’ opinion. It is one of the business world’s Faustian bargains – sign an employment contract, lose sight of what it is to be a customer.
That’s why well-schooled Marketers rely on consumer research to ‘hear’ and ‘see’ their customer, and shape their contribution anchored to that data.
Marketers are trained to discount their own perceptions/beliefs about the brand (including advertising, media, product, pricing etc) and instead seek rigour and clarity on what is driving customer choice using qualitative and quantitative techniques.
Let’s face it…the Exec and Board don’t want Marketing to justify strategy on the basis of “Oh! Hey! I have an idea”. They want Marketing to justify strategy on the basis of “I have the data, and that informed an idea”.
In a market-oriented organisation, consumer insight should be leveraged across the length and breadth of the business. There should be demand for customer insights to reach well beyond the Marketing team, providing the diagnostics and foundations for a whole of organisation customer strategy, shaping decision making, prioritising investment and effort across the business – Operations, Engineering, Sales, IT, HR, L&D.
Where that demand is not present, the opportunity is for Marketing to take the lead to focus the business on the facets of the category and business that are driving choice. The things that actually matter most to the customer.
So how do you do that?
To drive business growth, you need to affect the behaviour and decisions of two key stakeholders – your customers and your people. Yet too many brand’s neglect to lay the solid foundations of engaging their people in customer strategy, and so struggle to reach their customer goals.
The Forethought Engagement team help you involve your people in developing and executing customer-facing strategy and initiatives. We carefully design work programs and immersive experiences to ensure your customer insights are leveraged to drive improved customer outcomes and contribute to brand growth.
But this is just a thought starter. What are your brand and customer goals? What do you need to achieve? How can we help?