It’s a term that gets thrown around so much in the marketing world. So much that it’s almost doesn’t have meaning when you hear it. Or at least it doesn’t have a meaningful impact when you hear it.
You hear people talking about being customer-centric so much that it just washes over you. You nod, think for a minute about how right and important it is, and maybe say something to show your support.
But do you actually do anything differently?
Customer-centricity is the most powerful fuel for the growth of any business, and yet most of us aren’t filling our tanks. All growth comes from innovation of product and/or marketing. Innovation comes from finding new ways to add value. Adding value comes from solving needs. Solving needs can only happen when you have a deep, contextual understanding of your customer.
Growth starts and ends with the customer. That’s it. End of story. And yet so much of how we spend our time and money as marketers does not start and end with the customer. Someone should do the research (maybe we should?) on the correlation between how customer-centric a company is and how quickly they grow. But even anecdotally, when you think of challengers and the mind/market share they steal from incumbents, it all comes from building products and services that are more customer centric.
Robinhood vs Schwab
Lemonade vs Geico
Whoop vs Apple
Magic Spoon vs Kellogs
The time you aren’t spending focused on the customer is time challengers are gaining on you.
Make sure this isn’t just another customer-centric wave that rises and falls in your mind. Here are few meaningful, measurable, and manageable things you can (and should) do differently TODAY to be more customer-centric.
- Go speak to 5 customers
- Put out one social media post asking for feedback from your customers
- Buy your own product/service.
- Ask a friend to buy your product/service and to tell you about the experience.
- Set up a 60-minute meeting with your team and pretend you’re a customer viewing your site/shop. View your brand and product/service through their eyes.
- Make a list of 10 influencers that your customers follow. Go read their last 10 posts and the comments on them.
The important thing here isn’t what you do, it’s that you don’t do nothing. Even a little customer-centricity goes a long way.
Further reading and thinking on how and why to be customer-centric