Get started with customer research
There is one thing many businesses forget to do and that’s to really understand your customers, prospective customers, and competitor customers. If you want anyone to buy anything from you, you first better know what they are looking for.
Who are your customers?
A good first step is to get to know who your customers are. We might say ‘People who currently buy my products or services”. But let's break it down further: we have Loyal Customers (who buy regularly), Occasional Customers (who buy now and again) and Trial Customers (who've bought from us just the once). Then there are Potential Customers (who you had a cold call from or a friend you're meaning to talk to) and Competitor Customers (who buy a similar product or service from elsewhere). Already we have 5 customer groups.
How can understanding my different audiences actually help my business?
Understanding the difference between customer groups can help you talk to them differently. You may choose to change how you talk with each of them. Ask yourself why customers may choose to buy from you or from a competitor business. When you start asking why, you can truly understand why they buy from you, might buy from you or won’t buy from you.
You can gain quick wins from engaging with existing customers and talking with them about what they really want and need. If you don’t have customers, talk to prospective customers and find out what they are looking for. Then it may be an idea to engage with a specialist researcher. They'll be able to scale the research and shape conversations with customers and prospects to deliver findings that can lead to better commercial outcomes.