When working in marketing, there are many aspects that come to light that need to be addressed. On top of this list is anything to do with your customers, particularly their data. Hence, the 360-Degree Customer View was born.
Having customer data is of utmost importance to businesses nowadays. But the problem is that most of this data is scattered as customers interact with brands and with each other across multiple platforms: social media, mobile apps, in-store, on-ground, via websites, and more.
So how do you combine all of this and reach your customer? That’s the focus of today’s topic: the 360-Degree Customer View.
What Is a 360-Degree Customer View?
A 360-Degree Customer View is being able to collect all of your customers’ data in a single place. This data can include, but is not limited to, basic information such as names, telephone numbers, email…etc.
It also includes past and present billing information, purchasing activity, their interactions with your customer service representatives, and last but certainly not least, their social media behavior.
With the never-ending increase in online apps, people are getting drawn to personalized experiences that tailor to their needs. That’s why integrated approaches like the 360-degree customer view have become a hot topic now.
What does a 360-Degree View of a Customer Do?
It helps you, as a business, not only collect data but get a better understanding of your customers. Once you do, you can serve them better and reach them better.
In other words, a 360-Degree Customer View helps you build long-term relationships with customers and supports your business growth.
A 360-degree customer view can also be described as the foundation that makes an organization’s relationship with customers an experience-based relationship rather than a transaction-based one.
In other words, it’s a view that acts as a melting pot that syncs all customer data together.
With this unified knowledge, your business can acquire more precise customer insights and build unique customer experiences.
“360 degrees is a relationship cycle that consists of many touchpoints where a customer meets the brand. Be it through purchases or marketing communications, via customer service or on social media,” explains SuperOffice.
A great product isn’t enough to drive customers, but having a great customer service experience can help.
If your customer service representatives have all the info they need on customers, they can easily respond to them, answer their complaints and queries – without having to request background information – and support their needs.
“If you, as a company, are present at and collect information on each stop in this 360-degrees relationship cycle, then you truly know your customers. It helps you better understand your customers’ priorities and preferences. Which, in turn, means you can position yourself to better predict their current and future needs,” adds SuperOffice.
Everything under one roof
Imagine an unmotivated salesman going to work and having to call around four or five people to get customer data.
Now, imagine another person having the same information all on their desk.
Who is more likely to take relevant quick action?
Having strategies that shorten the chain and give us a multifaceted view of our customers is exactly what businesses should be looking for. Or maybe they are but don’t know what this strategy or tactic is called.
The 360-degree customer view provides this single yet comprehensive view of your customer even if that customer’s data is scattered across different applications and platforms.
Data shows that under 10% of companies use a 360-degree view of their customers, while only 5% use the 360-degree view to support and grow their businesses, says research firm Gartner.
So it’s no wonder companies are struggling. They are missing out on a major source of help when it comes to customer data.
Every business, big or small, needs a customer segmentation strategy to better target their customers and increase revenues. Using this strategy, companies will then be able to better understand their customers and their needs.geo
To do that, let’s first define what customer segmentation is.
As its name suggests, customer segmentation means dividing your customers into segments or rather into groups. You define these groups based on factors relevant to your business and its audience.
These segments or groups can be created based on demographics, that is age, country, region or city, gender, level of education, or based on language, or even on interests and personal preferences.
What is a customer segmentation strategy?
This is where you use customer segmentation to form a plan that your business will use and rely on to define your target audience and customers and to generate better results and revenues.
We will take the geographical location option as an example to formulate your customer segmentation strategy.
Broadly speaking, there are 4 main ways to group your customers into segments.
Part of your customer segmentation strategy is to determine which of the following four options you want to use. You can, of course, mix them up to narrow down your target customers. But we will get into that later.
The main types of customer segmentation rely on:
By using a customer segmentation strategy, you are able to define your audience and consequently direct your marketing efforts in the right places. You are also able to understand your customers and their needs, and achieve your business objectives by fulfilling those needs.
Customer segmentation strategy 101
As mentioned, there are four main branches of customer segmentation. Why do you need them? Because when you are creating a strategy, even if your product can be bought by everyone, you cannot target everyone all at once.
So, let’s delve deeper into each of the abovementioned customer segmentation options.
Demographics is a large field but it covers a wide range of options that you can use to divide your target customers. Demographics entail information about customers’ age, gender, race, ethnicity, income, education, marital status, and employment.
According to Instapage.com, by using demographic segmentation, companies “reduce the risk of running campaigns to uninterested consumers, which quickly increases return on investment (ROI).”
Moreover, a Harvard Business study indicates that around 85% of 30,000 new product launches in the United States fail because of poor segmentation.
You may find that one or more of the items on this list is not be feasible for your business and strategy, and that’s ok. You pick the aspects that are in line with your business and use them.
HubSpot best describes psychographics as a kind of demographics. “Psychographic information might be your buyer’s habits, hobbies, spending habits and values. Demographics explain “who” your buyer is, while psychographics explain “why” they buy.”
Like demographics, psychographics involve a list of options and categories, namely: lifestyle, social class, attitude, beliefs, personality traits, activities, and interests.
“Psychographics gives marketers greater leverage in influencing conversions. For example, demographic information might tell you something about a person’s age, but psychographic information will tell you that the person is just starting a family and is in the market for baby products,” explains HubSpot.
Another aspect of your customer segmentation strategy should be geographical location. Here, you can divide your customers based on regions, countries, or narrow it down to cities or even towns depending on what your business does and its target audience.
By understanding where your target customers are, you can zero in on them, address their pain points and offer your solution. With geographical segmentation, you can understand and address your customers’ varying needs based on location, country, or city.
For example, if you want to sell a product to people living in hot countries, you can look at countries in the Gulf region where temperature exceed 40 Celsius in summer.
Another term for geographical segmentation is geomarketing or georargeting
While demographics show who your customers are, psychographics show how they buy, and geography indicates where they are, behavior is about what they do regularly.
How do your customers act? What do they do? How do they take their decisions when buying a product or service?
All of these questions and more are part of your behavioral segmentation strategy. Compile a list of interests and behaviors to decide which target audience or which target buyer persona is the best fit for your product or service.
For example, if you are selling men’s perfumes, you can target the behavior of men who regularly buy perfumes or the women who buy perfumes for their partners or husbands on days like Valentine’s Day.
A bonus to your Customer segmentation strategy
We said there are 4 main branches to segmenting your customers. But what if there’s a fifth?
This fifth option is basically combining the above 4 points. In other words, segmenting your customers based on demographics, psychographics, geography, and behavior all at the same time.
This narrows down your target customers to a great extent. It literally segments them into much smaller groups that you can easily navigate and work with.
Let’s say you have a product that is used by millions of people, these people are not all located in the same place in the same age range, or with the same interests and behaviors. By combining the 4 segmentation branches, you are able to target customers much better and in a more detailed fashion.
Customer segmentation strategy in action
Let’s say your business operates in luxury retail and you want to expand to a new market in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. There are general notes that you have heard and compiled, like the need to target markets in the Gulf region.
But you have also heard that a country like Egypt has 100 million people. So, what do you do?
This is where your customer segmentation strategy comes in, clears the confusion, delivers the data, and helps you implement your expansion plans.
If you are an online business, you can target people who own a BMW or, depending on how luxurious your products are, you might prefer to target people who own a Maserati.
Almost there with your customer segmentation strategy
Now that you know how to segment your customers, there are a few steps that you need to perform as part of your customer segmentation strategy. These are:
Analyze and understand your customers
Create buyer personas
Identify market opportunities
Research other segments and opportunities
First: You need to analyze your target customers and understand them. If you are a brick-and-mortar business, don’t fret, Converted-In’s tools will help you understand your audience and what they like and dislike.
Second: You need to create buyer persona for your business’s ideal customer(s). With analysis ready, the buyer persona will already be clear in your mind. This step will help you decide who you want to attract to your business.
Third: At this stage, you want to look for opportunities based on your customers and segmentation so you can show these customers how your brand or business solves their problems. Ask questions like: ‘What are the ideal customer’s problems?’ ‘How does my brand solve them?’ And once you have your answers, go back to your persona and ask more questions like ‘Which customer segments aren’t getting enough (products)?’ ‘What other segments can I target?’
Fourth: This section is for when you discover new segments in your target market, based on your analysis and opportunities. Is the competition in this potentially new segment? What are they doing? What are they missing?
Fifth: A/B testing. You need to test the data you have uncovered and see how the target audience responds to your marketing, whether online or offline.
Have you filled all the above blanks based on your business data? Now you have a customer segmentation strategy. But it is hard work. That’s why using Converted-In’s consumer analytics tools like in-store metrics and GEO and demographics tools can bring your marketing efforts and customer segmentation strategy together.