The needs of contemporary consumers are changing at an increasingly rapid pace, new methodologies and strategies are needed to keep up with the market and to better understand consumers’ needs.
One method of understanding and therefore better meeting consumers’ needs is creating a persona by aggregating and evaluating the data that consumers provide about themselves and then marketing to that effective persona. The evaluation stage is important (3).
Step 1: Understand your customers deeply
The explosion of advertising and media channels has also added to the blurring of B2B and B2C. There is no more pure B2B and B2C anymore, it is human-to-human interaction that drives business development (4).
So despite all new technology there still a reliance on interactions human-to-human, however how this interaction take place has changed as technology has evolved. So understanding your customer is critical, in order to communicate with them effectively in this digitalised world.
So what should your company do for their customers?
You need to more deeply understand your customer and target individuals in ways that are interesting and could lead to them being amplifiers for your product. Relate the customer, to get them to relate to you.
For example below is a customer persona for a target audience. All the key information is there and linked to your business.
Step 2: Find the “cared” message by their preferred channels
It means mapping journeys and influences by customer segment and providing the message which is useful to them (8). Charting decision journeys by customer segment requires input from multiple sources and understanding the industry context.
For example, in construction equipment, the equipment is the core element for user. We, the marketers set up a journey based on the equipment.
If we can master the product, we can get the users onboard. The equipment will tell its owner what it needs. Then based on that, we can provide all the services for the equipment for which the users will pay. In this way, we manage the customers by providing high value and productive equipment.
Equipment Examination Membership system
|Membership management||Classified Management||Equipment care||Communication channels||Marketing||Feedback||Classified|
|Equipment Series number||Type of machine||Coupon||Different content based on different requirements||Result following||Start next campaign based on the latest classification|
|Equipment information||maintenance record||Product maintenance reminding||Result following|
|Life cycle||Purchasing record||Spare parts working reminding||H5||Result following|
|Manufacture places||Once the owner buy sth ,they can get some score||On-site visiting||Result following|
|Score accumulating||Telephone||Result following|
Step 3: Use social media to be your business accelerator
Consumers use new media to participate in social networks, which enables them to create and share content, communicate with one another, and build relationships with other consumers.
Social activities can be seen as a way to increase ‘power’ by spreading information and inviting responses. It will build a continuous cycle for the whole promotion driving positive results for your business (2).
Example: set up a campaign and create a coupon publishing campaign. The user is going to use the coupon to get more benefits. As soon as we receive the coupon, we can get the results and combine that information with the target audience. All the information could be saved in the big data. The system could grab and make evaluations after the campaign.
Step 4: Keep it in the active system and use data management
As tech becomes more mobile, everything from our clothing to our transport, homes, offices and factories will all be wired. Of course this will generate even more data than we already have which will require a much greater processing capacity so that meaningful insight can be extracted from big data in real time. Which means there will be more information than ever about all of us online thus dramatically increasing the need for data management (5).
Big Data to get ahead
In today’s world and more critically in the future, using big data will help companies better profile their customer and communicate with the in the way the prefer, about that they like and when the like it be communicated to.
Keeping it social
Traditionally, we used CRMs in global companies. But with the technology in China developing so fast, there’s a new system called Social CRM. It means all the data and customer behavior could be grabbed and stored in the social CRM (5). The advantages is it’s linking the online activity with a customer’s social activity.
The blurring between B2B and B2C along with increased social interactions will further challenge marketers in getting the message and the channels right. When dealing in the social sphere the tone of the message needs to be different. It also the provides a challenge to keep the data safe and confidentiality, something that will be key for every marketer.
Draw up a picture of your customer and talk to them
I have illustrated the importance of making a business focused persona on which to base tailored content and the how to use social media to create crowd power (2). A firm’s role in this relationship often is simply to facilitate community interaction by providing enabling technology infrastructure characteristics.
During the whole process managing customer relationships in the era of new media resembles pinball playing, with extensive information being available on brands and products which can multiply, but also interfere with the companies’ marketing messages (such as bumpers do when playing pinball) and make it more complex to control brand images and relationship outcomes such as customer equity (6).
And for the data security, don’t let the ball pass through the flippers, you have to pay attention during the whole process.
- Lingqvist, Oskar/ Plotkin, Candace Lun/Stanley, Jennifer Do you really understand how your business customers buy? McKinsey Quarterly. 2015 1st Quarter, Issue 1, p74-85. 12p. 1 Diagram.
- Lauren I. Labrecque a,⁎& Jonas vor dem Esche b& Charla Mathwick Consumer Power: Evolution in the Digital Age
- Thorsten Hennig-Thurau1,2, Edward C. Malthouse3, Christian Friege4, Sonja Gensler5, Lara Lobschat6,Arvind Rangaswamy7, and Bernd Skiera8 The Impact of New Media on Customer Relationships
- Yoram (Jerry) Wind ,The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA Blurring the lines: is there a need to rethink industrial marketing?
- BERKELEY-HAASCASESERIES Maersk Line: B2B SOCIAL MEDIA—“IT’S COMMUNICATION, NOT MARKETING”
- Lecture :The evolution of buyers – in the business to business environment
- SCRM study from Webpower application case 2017 1011 China Eno
- Bickart, Barbara and Robert M. Schindler (2001), Botti, Simona and Sheena “Internet Forums as Influential Sources of Consumer Information,” Journal of InteractiveMarketing,
- Ariely, Dan (2000), “Controlling the Information Flow: Effects on Consumers’ Decision Making and Preferences,” Journal of Consumer Research, 27, 2, 233–Ayoubkhani, Daniel