There’s a gap between companies’ ambition to be customer-centric and the actual implementation of that ambition. In this series of articles, we discuss eight ways in which to bridge that gap.

The first way in which organisations can hope to accomplish this is by having realistic goals.

Be Specific

Getting closer to customers is an admirable if fuzzy goal. In order to drive action, your goals need to be focused on a particular problem or area. It’s no good having a vague goal like “retain more customers this year.” First consider what you already know about this problem, where the gaps in your insight might be, how you will fill the knowledge gap and what actions you might take from it. Break down larger goals into more manageable steps to make sure your organisation doesn’t get lost on the journey.

 

Measure It

Typically, when organisations think about their customer’s satisfaction it is through the lens of Net Promoter Scores, Annual Surveys, Average Lifetime Value and Churn Rates. Whilst these are all useful metrics, they only tell you what happened after the fact and may only present a broad picture. If you are specific with your goals, be specific with how you are going to measure them and think about ways you can leverage live data, social listening and more agile research in order to measure the impact of your actions. If you can’t measure it, how can you hope to achieve it?

 

Make it achievable

While its nice to set, big ambitious targets this can have a negative effect on your team. A goal should motivate people, but if they never believe they can achieve them, it will have the opposite effect. For example, we worked with a consumer goods brand whose aim was to have 20 million registered customers by the year 2020. This was a popular and well-known brand, but not one with any natural path to customer registration. The ambition was well beyond their current capability to achieve, as well as not being tied to any actual business need. A smaller ambition, tied to an actual goal, would have been a much better starting point.

 

Think practically

There will always be a trade-off between the ideal world for customers, and for your organisation. It’s no good spending a lot of time, money and effort in working towards a solution you can never truly deliver. One example would be customer churn. Let’s say most customers chose ‘found a cheaper alternative’ when leaving and you want to understand this better. You might conduct a phone interview to confirm this is why your customers left and to which competitor. You might then also conduct some wider research to understand your offering in the market, to find out if your competitors offer the same service for less. All of this would be a complete waste of time and money, if you haven’t already agreed that you’ll change your pricing/offering if backed up by data. Think about the potential actions your business will take and then back up those actions with the right data and insight.


If you want to practical insight that will have an impact on your organisation today, why not get in touch with the Bonamy Finch team.