Customer behaviour is forever changing what happens today won’t be the same in six months. Digital disruption, new technologies, and environmental concerns all have an impact on consumers buying decisions and motivations.

When it comes to planning your marketing strategy, don’t assume the personas you had last year will apply this year. 

Some companies rely on data to understand their customers, but is that enough considering how many factors influence buying decisions?  We will never know everything about their motivations to purchase.  We can, however, take time to reach out to them to understand their drivers and frustrations.

There are lots of ways we can dig deeper into customer buying behaviour.  To help, we have created the top five tips that will get you closer and engage at a deeper level with your customer;

 1. Create your customer persona through customer insight.

It is essential not to make assumptions when it comes to creating a customer persona.  It may seem an arduous task, but it is one that will not only strengthen your connection and engagement with your customer; it will build brand advocacy. You have customers right now? Yes? Then talk to them, distribute online surveys, create a profile of their lifestyle, what they like, and what they don’t like. What motivates them, and what influences their decisions? 

2. Focus Groups

 Get them in a room! By inviting existing, potential, and lost customers to a focus group, you will hear a much more rounded view. You will uncover their frustrations and will gain a deeper understanding of their motivations to buy and the expectations they have; all this information will help you improve your business processes and business offering.  

2. Social listening 

What information are your customers sharing online? Do you know how they feel about your business? What behaviours and traits are your customers displaying? Using social listening can allow you to build a deeper understanding of your customer, using this type of information can allow you to target more accurately and on a deeper level with potential customers.  

 3. Analytics

Google Analytics can provide great insight into customer buying behaviours online.  Take a look at their demographics, does it match your customer database?  What time do they search and what times they are likely to buy?  Take note of when they drop off or get stuck on your site.  Understanding how they like to purchase and their behaviours will help you improve their experience online.

4. Listen and follow up on feedback

When you receive feedback, listen, and then act on it.  All of us like to share our experiences even if we share offline, we tend to put it online at some point. We jump on our social channels and share our opinions.  Engaging with them, whether it is good or bad feedback shows that you are listening.  

5. Internal customer workshops

Part of understanding your customer is to ensure the internal business is on this journey too. We know companies are busy doing business, but how much more business could you be doing by improving your internal processes?  It is crucial to hold customer workshops with your employees to review these processes, as they must continuously evolve in-line with changing customer needs. While a culture of innovation should be encouraged, employees should be recognised and rewarded for delivering, meeting and exceeding customer needs.

Once you have a good idea who your customers are, and how they want to engage with you, you can start to map the entire customer journey.  For further hints and tips, download our guide to Customer Journey Mapping.