Brilliant Reads: the importance of building customer-led marketing from the ground up

Welcome to Brilliant Reads. This week we’re discussing how to build customer-led marketing into the very core of your company. From creative employee engagement to create empathy, to the traits of an effective customer-centric company. Customer centricity is no longer a goal to aim for, it’s vital to ensure your company’s future.

Interesting ideas and innovation happen when things are brought together in fresh ways. At Brilliant Noise, we are interested in the dots that are connected to create these new combinations.

Shaping your organisation to be customer centric at the core

A recent study run by the Marketing Week shows the vast chasm between marketers that believe customer centricity is vital and ones that actually implement it. They found 42.2% of marketers believe a customer-centric model is the most vital way to organise marketing, yet only 5.8% of companies actually put this in place. The want to change is there, so what do you need to do to tap into this and ensure your organisation is becoming customer centric?

The obvious starting point is to get to know the challenges and pain points in your organisation that customers face. This way you can start to design processes and practises to address these directly. Understanding these challenges and making sure they are communicated throughout the brand also gives your employees purpose that is easily conveyed to the customer. From this breeds collaboration, when everyone has common goals to work on your team feels like, well, just that, a team. It’s not only felt internally though, as conveying this common purpose outward makes the customer feel like they are joining you on this journey, people don’t want to feel like a walking debit card, they want to feel involved.

Building a customer-centric business model
Marketing Week, 5 mins

How do you cultivate empathy?

An organisation’s need to empathise with customers sounds like a no brainer – if you understand the customer you provide a better and more creative service. So what’s the best way to cultivate customer empathy with your employees? An immediate thought is obvious – spend more time with the customers, survey them, talk to them. But what if you went a step further and built experiences where the employee actually becomes the customer? Having your employees step into the customers’ shoes can lead them to have a much richer understanding of the customer experience.

To do this effectively you need a framework for these experiences.

1. Gather insights: learn what is frustrating, broken or annoying for your customer.

2. Get outside: is there anyone else that has similar problems? Other industries or stories to choose from that resonate.

3. Make it creative: it doesn’t need to be a survey for your employees. Simulations, role-play, building the experience makes it much more memorable.

4. Do it: the experience shouldn’t be long, meaning you can ensure everyone in your organisation has a chance to try it, this will leave people with ideas and actions to take away.

To Get Employees to Empathize with Customers, Make Them Think Like Customers
Harvard Business Review, 6 mins

Creating human connections that matter

Forrester’s recent Customer Experience Index results reveal that companies are still struggling to build and nurture real human connections with customers. Now this isn’t simply the case of a smile at the checkout or a personalised email, there is real tangible monetary value at stake as customers expect individual experiences. It’s a daunting challenge to shift deep-rooted models within the company around the customer. Companies need to rethink their current perceptions of the customer from ‘account holders’ to an individual human entity that’s vital to their business.

The Index results may shock some but for many they are unsurprising. From distrust in institutions to internal silos complicating design and delivery are putting many brands at risk. Human-orientated experiences are soon becoming the norm, so are you ready? We can help you discover if your organisation is truly making human connections, get in touch to find out how.

Customer Experience Index Reveals Brands Lack Human Connection
Forrester, 3 mins

Nina Jones on why being customer centric should be imperative

We recently hosted a marketing transformation event with our good friend Nina Jones, Global Customer Experience Director (formerly of Porsche, Jaguar Land Rover and Microsoft). We talked about the major challenges senior marketers face today and her experiences of building customer centricity in major brands.

We’ve worked with Nina across several different projects over the past 12 years, including Porsche, Jaguar Land Rover and Microsoft. In Nina’s experience, providing digital capability training within her marketing teams resulted in smashed silos, improved levels of engagement and tangible ROI. The full event summary is available below.

Perform to transform – an event summary
Brilliant Noise, 5 mins

What actually makes a customer-centric company?

Now we all know companies need to put the customer first. You’re pushing towards communicating with the customer, understanding their wants and needs. Growing the brand purpose from the inside out. But once you stop and think, how do you know your company is becoming more customer centric? Below Forbes has listed the ten traits of a client-focused company:

1. Focused on client experience
Exceed expectation and provide meaningful and valuable experiences for the client.

2. Engage in the client thought process
Never assume your knowledge of a client’s thinking is accurate.

3. Engaged leadership
If employers care about both employees and customers, then employees will also thrive and give their best to customers.

4. Engaged workforce
Loyal employees serve loyal clients.

5. Collaborative
Don’t segregate customer data and feedback.

6. Responsive
Being responsive with detail and solutions is vital for a client-focused company.

7. Creative
Leaders who capitalise on creativity put it on their business agendas.

8. Innovative
Don’t be afraid to experiment.

9. Individual attention
Don’t let the little guy be forgotten as you strive to meet metrics goals.

10. Social conscientiousness
Help communities locally but also worldwide.

10 Traits Of A Client Focused Company
Forbes, 4 mins

Thanks for reading. If you have any feedback, or suggestions for future editions, get in touch.