▷ Why and how to become customer centric in your business?

"The only boss is the customer," said Walmart CEO Sam Walton. The customer is indeed the greatest wealth of your business. From there, being customer centric seems to be perfectly obvious. 83% of companies say that being customer centric is a strategic priority, according to Actito (October 2015) …

Although customer centricity is not a recent concept, it is now more successful because of the advent of digital. But what exactly is customer centric? What are its benefits? And how do you put it in place ?

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Customer centricity: Definition

Becoming a customer centric requires placing the customer is at the heart of your company's concerns. In other words, rather than reasoning from your products (product centric), you prioritize your actions according to the consequences they would have on your customers.

Being customer-oriented is about maximizing long-term customer satisfaction at all points of contact. It's about a true corporate culture to integrate and also a process to start. To avoid falling into the "customer washing" (on the model of "green washing"), rather widespread unfortunately, a true customer culture must spread in all areas of your business. "Many companies that claim to be customer-oriented are just at the beginning of a long process," says Philippe Moati, professor of economics at Paris-Diderot University.

Both strategic and operational, the approach has become very important for several years. Because digital tools offer great opportunities, customer centricity is accelerating today. On the one hand, companies have a set of digital resources to strengthen their knowledge and customer relationship. On the other hand, customers use a wide variety of technologies to inform and be advised in their purchases.

5 advantages to be customer centric

Adopting the customer centricity will bring you many benefits. Here are 5:

1. Boost your turnover

By meeting the needs of your customers, you are more in tune with her. Thanks to the appropriation of this vision, you will durably boost the financial perspectives of your activity.

2. Identify new growth levers

Being customer centric makes it possible to quickly and regularly detect their expectations. Thus, you drive more skilfully your business by guiding you wisely on new niches of development.

3. Promote reaccept

By being customer centric, you sustainably boost your customers' satisfaction. You meet their expectations by facilitating their omni-channel purchasing journey through an ever better optimized sales channel. They become regular consumers of your brand. This boosts the ROI (return on invest – return on investment) of your customer orientation process.

4. Strengthen your positioning

As part of a differentiation strategy, placing the customer at the heart of your business strengthens your positioning. By developing your specificities, you distinguish yourself from the competition on the customer relationship aspect and not products. You create emotion and sharing, two concepts that bring you closer to your clientele.

5. Customize your customer experience

Far from mass marketing, the customer centricity allows you to delight your customers by offering them a unique and memorable experience on all points of contact. Filling their expectations, you create intense relationship moments that consolidate a long-term customer relationship.

How to be customer centered?

Traditionally in France, companies are product centric. Being customer centric upsets the company culture by modifying its fundamental paradigm. It is an internally driven process that may take time to be fully operational. Staff training as well as organizational changes are essential prerequisites. Indeed, the approach affects all teams and changes the way of thinking and behavior.

Moving your business to a customer centric approach means doing grow your customer knowledge. Indeed, a customer obsession process is built through feedback from customers. All interactions between a customer and your organization (regardless of the channel used) then become sources of study. To do this, the exploitation of your client files and the intensification of your content marketing are the best leads.

Analysis of customer data to boost customer knowledge

Analyzing the needs and expectations of your clientele is fundamental to being clearly customer centric. With big data and the emergence of predictive marketingcustomer wish analysis takes on another dimension. It must allow you to completely rethink your approach by intelligently exploiting customer reviews and comments, whether positive or negative.

Becoming customer-oriented requires having segmented customer files to identify the higher value-added portions. These customers, the most profitable, must then be the subject of all your attention. You must study the sources of enchantment (in order to duplicate them) and dissatisfaction (to prevent their attrition). One of your main goals is to seek to eliminate or mitigate the pain points (bread points), those moments of the buying experience badly experienced by your customers.

Content marketing to create a bond and develop commitment

Demanding, expert and zapper, today's customer has changed. It's up to you to determine what role it should play in your development and operate the right levers: partner, prescriber or ambassador rather than inactive, dissatisfied or detractor. By creating a lasting link, content marketing allows you to boost customer relationship and expand your community via social media.

For customer centricity to become your mantra, interact with your audience by creating qualitative content is central: blog articles, newsletters, emailing, publications on social networks … The content marketing product that will be shared and relayed by your customers on the Web. So you create commitment by developing your e-reputation and trust in your brand. In addition, this strategy meets the expectations of customers, unlike conventional advertising campaigns.

The customer centricity is a real state of mind in the business that must be shared by everyone and at every moment. On your side, do you consider yourself a customer centric or product centric? Feel free to comment on the benefits you get from your positioning!