Most likely you have demographic information available that tells you a lot about clients' ages, family status, income levels, geographic areas and other statistical information. This type of data is certainly useful, but it's also limited. Understanding your clients takes more than reading simple data off a computer screen or report sheet. You really need to get inside their head.
Here are some helpful steps to understanding your clients better, allowing you to provide meaningful experiences, exceptional services and top-quality products that will attract and keep clients.
- Know who your clients are, what they want and what they need: To effectively market products and services to a client, you have to know what that client wants, needs and expects. It also helps to be aware of what the client doesn't need and what might cause a negative reaction. If your services are intended for working architects or engineers, for example, you have to know about the needs and concerns of the professionals in this situation.
Talk to your clients to find out what would make their lives easier, what causes them anxiety, and what helps them meet their obligations to work and family. When you have a high level of insight into how your clients think, work and live, you'll be better able to provide the services they need most.
- Look at your services through their lens: Put yourself in your client’s position. Get to know the range of options before them. There is a whole ecosystem of vendors, partners, and consultants. You are in this space. Understanding where you fit along with understanding the competition, will allow you to better predict next steps.
- Engage in social media listening: For a client you can't talk to in person, use social media to ask questions and gather information. Find out the online message boards and sites that attract your client and people like them, then read these boards to get an idea of what your clientele talks about.
- Provide client persona specific surveys: Use targeted online survey tools to send customized surveys to your client personas to gain greater insight into their needs and concerns. You could also include printed surveys sent via direct mail. Increase the likelihood of response by offering a reward, such as a discount in exchange for a completed survey.
- Look into the crystal ball: Always be on the look out for what clients will want in the future. Visualize a different future for your services offering. Plan different scenarios and then determine how they would withstand shifts in the market. Peering into your client’s future will keep you ahead of the game.
Never make any assumptions about what you think your client wants. You can also fall into the trap of listening to the client concerns that fit your own offerings. Failing to gain a complete understanding will make you lose sight of new opportunities, or worse yet, get blindsided by the competition. Really listen to what your clients are saying and you will find the answers you need.
How do you learn more about your clients? Did we miss anything? If you are willing to share your techniques with us, please share in our comments section below. We’d love to hear from you!
Contact Colosi Marketing today for more information on techniques for understanding your customers and how you can use this insight to your best advantage.
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