I am in the good fortune of meeting with the chief executives of top American retailers. I get to speak with them (more importantly, listen to them) about their customers, their thoughts, their desires. They recognize how valuable a customer is, juxtaposed against an understanding of what it costs them to acquire a customer and retain them as long as possible.
There are some common threads running through these discussions;
First: They want to know more about their customers. It’s becoming clear to them that they must embrace the psychographics of their customer. The blog I have attached highlights the emergence of this trend. This means making sure the data they have in place is sane and that their business principles revere the sanctity of keeping this data clean and with high integrity.
Second: That which has been tried has, by and large, become the tired. It’s no longer sufficient to just measure basket size, customer lifetime value (CLV) and recency, frequency and money (RFM). Much more granular information that is inherently more fluid and temporal in nature must be acquired and grasped, interpreted essentially in aggregated and quantified groupings. This forms the basis of a shift away from mass marketing to targeted segmentation. Campaigns and promotions become based on these groups receiving highly resonant messages that stimulate consumer participation.
Third: Prediction, if you have come to understand at a more finite level who is participating in your brand experience, then the next step in this equation is predicting who will be next. This identifies not only trends (and their inherent life span) but also the potential need to respond in adapting the brand experience that one desires to offer to potential customers. The part always comes in the form of making the decision of who you don’t want as a customer. No one talks about it, but it is part of the equation when determining how when is going to control their marketing spend. It’s an important part of the discussion.
Marketers who follow this path bring sanity, control and most importantly customers to a relevant brand experience.
It’s an exciting time to watch the evolution of consumer marketing.