Customer insights will help firms weather tough storms

Customer Experience

Client insights are central to the transformation of the customers' experience. They help businesses to understand customer situations, penetrate their minds, accelerate decision-making, and empower teams to take action in the right direction.

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Insights are like a sixth sense. They help us gain an accurate and deeper understanding of a situation or a person. Insights give us the power to see what is not evident on the surface. For example, if we visit a friend we have not seen in years, we might get a better understanding of why they went quiet.

What insights do you have from our customers' feedback? Insights drive customer understanding. Through them, we discover why our customers behave in a certain way, and we identify what motivates them and what they think and feel about our products, services, people, and processes.

Many businesses are capturing real-time customer feedback immediately after an interaction. Others only ask for feedback once a year or once every two years. Why would any business wait a full year to generate customer insights?

To survive in today's competitive market, businesses need to not only capture customer feedback but also generate insights from the data. What is gleaned needs to be timely and actionable? What insights are we generating from these interactions with customers?

Client insights are central to the transformation of the customers' experience. They help businesses to understand customer situations, penetrate their minds, accelerate decision-making, and empower teams to take action in the right direction.

If you are the CEO of a bank and you wake up to a flood of messages from friends and family saying that your bank has been trending on Twitter all night, you would be curious to know what made it a trend. If your bank is keen on social media data analytics and customer insights, you might also wake up to a report with insights on why your institution is trending and what actions are being taken.

Customer insights

Customer insights are a growing area of interest for forward-looking businesses. The insights are no longer only for marketers but for every business leader. Many businesses have teams in charge of analytics and insights. These teams are making use of both secondary and primary customer data, operational and experience data, and quantitative as well as qualitative data.

The information is being interpreted to guide decisions that improve customer experience and, in turn, business performance. These teams are not only tracking the customer experience metrics across the entire journey, but they are also carrying out sentiment analysis across the different communication channels.

In addition, these teams are quick to sense triggers that need further action, and many of them are involved in carrying out diagnostics. Smart business leaders look forward to being privy to valuable customer insights, conclusions, and recommendations.

Every smart business must seek to have an in-depth understanding of its customers, employees, and other key stakeholders, such as its partners. It is critical to have a structured way to gather, evaluate, and report customer insights on an ongoing basis. The best customer insights give a complete 360-degree view of the customer, their interactions, their behaviors and attitudes, and their overall relationship with the business.

They also explain why customers do what they do. If you want to take your business to the next level in customer experience and even in marketing, a good starting point is to focus on insights into what makes customers tick and what causes them pain. Once customer insights have been generated, it is time to take the action needed.

Dr Lucy Kiruthu is a Management Consultant and Trainer. Connect via Twitter @KiruthuLucy

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