• Thursday, May 23, 2024
businessday logo


How well do you know your customers?

How well do you know your customers?

The phrase “Know Your Customer” (KYC) is well used by businesses across board. It underpins the need for businesses to know and give persona to their customers and not just see them as numbers. It is expected to serve as excellent resource for product development. Sadly, it would appear that many businesses do not see the merit of KYC. Infact, most KYC processes are compelled by regulating bodies or agencies.

Many businesses, especially in Nigeria, fail to leverage the strategic resource and derivable data of KYC to benefit themselves or their audience. No matter how big or small your business, knowing your customer is the first step to acing sales with your target market. So, why is it that many brands still don’t know whom they are selling to, and how can they do better?

One of the biggest mistakes marketers make is believing that a complete customer profile can be made from one input form or market survey. But you need to use different sources to collect data and survey all potential markets where you sell, to get to know the people who buy from you.

9 Steps to Know Your Customers

You may not know everything about your customer’s behaviour and preferences. But you can get valuable insight using these nine steps.

Identify Your Customers

The first step is to identify your customer core demographics — the age group, location and community — that frequently buys your product. This info will introduce you to people you should market and sell to the most because your probability of success is higher with them. This data will also help you specifically design the product and your marketing strategy to target them.

Know Your Competitors

Most businesses don’t realise the importance of knowing what they are up against. But it is a vital part of learning about your customers. When you fail to satisfy your prospective clients and customers, where do they turn? What is it about the rivals you don’t or can’t offer? How can you formulate products and services to beat them in this game? What is your unique value proposition, i.e., what sets you apart from the crowd?

To answer these questions, you’ll first have to know who the crowd is and what they offer. Study your target audience to learn what they prefer in your competitors’ products. Then apply it to your brand.

Know What Prospective Buyers Will Pay

If you’re launching a product for the first time, you need to find what people are willing to pay for it. Otherwise, you’ll have stock rotting away in warehouses. When you price the product above your target audience’s buying range, it will never make good sales.

Therefore, you must determine how much money people are willing to spend on the item. You can conduct surveys and look at your competitor’s prices to estimate the prices you should charge for your products.

Uncover Market Need vs. Want

Another essential step to knowing your customers is whether they even need your product or not.
The answer to this will also help you price your product as a luxury or essential item. Usually, when people spend on an essential, needed item, they want the best deal possible.

On the other hand, if you sell a luxury item, it has to be the best possible quality to attract those with disposable income and a thirst for the finer things in life. In this instance, pricing your product too low hurts your brand image.

Either way, your product should be able to solve a pain point for your customers.

Ensure Packaging Appeals to Their Aesthetics

Packaging has two essential features. The first is protecting the product from outside elements and maintaining its shelf life. Second is grabbing attention and enticing people to buy.

One reason your sales are decreasing can be poor packaging that doesn’t appeal to your target audience’s tastes. Therefore, you need to know how much product packaging affects your sales.

It’s vital to understand what your customers think about your product packaging and what they expect from brands in your industry. Moreover, ask your customers what they prefer in a product’s packaging design and implement it into your offerings.

Gather Opinions About the Product

Sometimes, people intend to use a product long-term but quickly decide they don’t like it. As a result, sales numbers start to decline, and companies don’t know what went wrong.

Open a feedback forum where customers can share their experience with your product anytime. This should be a closed forum so only you know whether people like your product or not.

Find the Most Important Features of Your Product

Different groups of people use your product. So, you need to know what different product features are attracting these specific groups. For example, one group may value aesthetics, while a second group feels your price is right. So, if you want to know your customers, learn the most important features they want your product to have.

Look for Growth Opportunities

As a business owner, it’s your job to look for growth opportunities to push your company forward. A product may seem perfect, but there’s always room for improvement. Instead of being comfortable with the sales revenue, ask your customers what more they expect from your product. How can you upgrade your offerings according to their needs?

To successfully upgrade your product, you need to know your customers. And to do that, you must conduct surveys, gather feedback, collect and analyse data. After doing this, you can identify the growth area for your product. This research will also increase your knowledge of your customers, what appeals to them, and which features they’re willing to spend money on.

Make Sure Buyers Trust You

Trust is an essential factor of the customer-seller relationship. If your customers don’t trust your company or your products, they won’t buy from you. That’s why it’s crucial you understand how much your customers trust you and what you can do to improve your brand’s reputation with them.

Conduct experiments, surveys or gather feedback to know where you stand. It’s also a good idea to create a trust scale and ask your customers to rate your products from one to ten.

Last line

Knowing your customer ensures your company’s success. However, not many companies understand who their customers are and what they want in a product. Complicating things further, there’s no complete tool to make a perfect customer profile and buyer personas.