Re-imagining the Customer: From Big Data to One Human
Let’s re-state the obvious — the world changed radically (and perhaps forever) in 2020.
We, marketers, have all been very focused on what we needed to do during the COVID-19 pandemic to adapt quickly to how we live and work today.
But “pivoting” as a way of doing business is drawing to an end and customer-centric planning is taking its place.
That means we’ll still need to move quickly to respond to trends and opportunities, but we also need to take a close look at who’s buying and traveling, where they are, and how they’re transacting.
“It has never been more important for organizations to anticipate change, strengthen resilience, and become truly customer-obsessed.” – Forrester CMO Trends
Marketing Spending Shifts
A recent survey (also by Forrester, as quoted in Marketing Dive) noted that overall marketing spending in the U.S. will decline by a whopping 30 percent from the end of last year to the beginning of 2022.
What does that mean for marketers and advertisers?
Every precious dollar will need to be spent on targeting the people who are likely to buy your product or service — exactly at the moment they’re contemplating that decision. Consumer behavior has changed significantly as a result of the pandemic.
- People are staying closer to home, creating a huge opportunity for local advertising, including outdoor and targeted print.
- The economic environment requires more consumers and businesses to look for discounts and deals — creating unique opportunities for seasonal and targeted promotions.
- Consumers are less brand-centric than ever, open to exploring new products from new companies.
- Trust and value ranks highest as consumers regard companies and related purchases.
Big Data Gives Rise to Small Marketing Miracles
The marketers who will survive and thrive long into the future will use the vast amount of demographic and behavioral data at their disposal. They’ll marry it with the right combination of media and messages to break through the clutter and straight to the consumer’s heart, mind, and wallet. Research is almost instant these days and marketing automation tools enable marketers to adjust their strategy and spend almost immediately based on results.
Working with a media strategist, you can put together a highly-targeted full-year plan or individual campaigns geared precisely to the audience you need to reach. These professionals can offer-up a wide range of customer-centric options and tailor them to your budget. Although the customer has always been at the heart of successful marketing campaigns, their needs, behaviors, and media consumption is radically different from prior years.
We are declaring 2021 “The Year of Customer Care” and suggest you will too. Although automation has enabled more sophisticated targeted marketing, the flesh and blood human is ultimately making the purchase decision.
By knowing who and where they are and what they really need, you can rise above your competitors and prosper.
Need insights or support on reaching your next best customer? Our team of media strategists are excited to hear from you. Give us a shout.