Your best friend has an important party next week. He asks you to pick the right dress for the occasion. You agree and do it happily.
Next day, a stranger walks into your office and says, ‘I too have a party to attend. Please help me buy the right dress.’
‘Because I don’t know you well!’ is your immediate answer, ‘let us become friends, spend few months, and then I will know enough about you to suggest a suitable dress for the occasion.’
Of course, this is a silly story; but it can be useful to understand the importance of knowing more about your customer, so that you can serve them better, position the right products and win.
A simple example for this, when a shop owner cares to remember the color preference of a customer, she can suggest them the models they are more likely to buy. This is better than showing them all models, wasting time and giving them a poor customer experience.
This needn’t be purely transactional. You can collect significant details about your customers over few weeks or months, and then use all that to target them right products in a dynamic campaign.
For example, if a car company releases a new model with automated gear system, should they target this car to all their existing customers? Or only to those who prefer automated gears feature? How would they know for sure?
As the above example illustrates, each business will have its own unique ‘Enriched Customer’ vision. This will reflect all the information they need to know about their customers to target effectively and achieve the magic one slice marketing.
But how do I know more about a customer?
Good news, most of this customer information is already available with you, in some form or other!
Bad news, they are available in so many systems, no one knows the overall picture, structure of information and their relationships with each other.
Modern techniques like big data can solve such huge data issues. But this is not a problem of quantity; just some collection and alignment is required.
Hence, it is recommended that you follow 7As of customer enrichment
- Audit ALL your customer info available from multiple systems, even those not available today
- Allocate methods for collecting each missing data
- Arrive at a common structure (this may differ for each domain / company)
- Align each data source / structure to this common structure
- Aggregate all useful data in one place
- Analyze the data
- Act on it
These 7As will be a good start in your customer enrichment journey!