One of the most important things in marketing is the ability to see your targeted demographic as the people they really are instead of the numbers you analyze. Most of us can look around and see it happening with other companies, but it’s hard sometimes to see it in your own. Here’s what happens:
- a small company does a good job connecting with the customer
- as a result, there are more customers
- because there are more customers, the company gets bigger
- as the company gets bigger, practices change to meet the demands of a larger operation
- as the people making the decisions are separated by organizational format from the people who actually deal with the customer, the customers start to become numbers instead of people
How To Avoid The Mistake
In marketing, it’s a mistake to analyze numbers without recognizing who the numbers represent. One easy way to keep your target audience in mind is the empathy map, a marketing tool that helps your team figure out the people you are trying to reach. If you have an empathy map on the wall for each persona representing the various types of people who make up your audience, it’s a reminder that those numbers are people.
Another way to avoid the mistake is to listen to the people in the organization who are interacting with the customer and take their advice–unless there’s a very good reason to ignore it. It’s true that customer service reps and salespeople don’t usually see the whole business strategy, but they know the people who are the reason the business exists.
Since our competitors are easily accessible via the internet, our customers don’t need much reason to go somewhere else. One of the biggest reasons a customer goes looking for other options is that sense of being a number instead of a valued customer. If too many of the people feel like a number and leave, that affects the numbers, and that affects your bottom line.