The Key to a Successful Business: Know Your Customer

February 12, 2016
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Knowing your customers well and providing the best service by understanding their needs and exceeding their expectations is the key to the growth of a business, company or a country. Listening to their requests is important, but if you have information or data on their behavior, you are in a better position to personalize their experience.

Customer data refers to demographic, socio-graphic and other information linked to the behavior and preferences of the customers. “We are in an era of personalization and the digital world, and this gives us the opportunity to better understand our customers’ preferences and anticipate their tastes and needs,” said Mariel Arraiza, Executive Vice President and Director of the Marketing and Intelligence Division of Banco Popular.

Compiling this valuable information opens the way to optimizing your business’ service or product and making it more attractive, said Arraiza. “Understanding your customers is the key to keeping their loyalty and getting them to refer others who are not your customers but who have a similar profile.”

Analysis of the most important data simplifies your business’ offerings and makes them more relevant to the customer’s needs. The goal is not just to gather a bucket of information, but rather to look for the right data and have a good system of analysis to reach conclusions that are in line with your business’ objectives.

According to the executive, general customer data is solicited, such as full name, mailing address, telephone number and e-mail, as well as gender, age and marital status. Depending on the industry, other information may be requested, such as hobbies, education level, number of children or number of rooms in the home and the kind of car. “This information can indicate the customer’s stage of life, socio-economic level, preferences and behavior.”

Depending on the product, more specific questions can be asked. In the case of banks, for example, customers are asked if they are employed, what are their financial needs and at what age they plan to retire. You must be careful when requesting information that can be interpreted as discriminatory and above all you have to respect the customer’s preferences in terms of privacy.

There are various mechanisms for collecting customer information, whether in points of contact with the customers, such as stores, branches, call centers or online encounters, as well as promotional events.

“The main objective of this process of collecting and analyzing information on customers should be to add value to customers, respecting their privacy while personalizing their experience to simplify their lives. All of this in a way that creates a winning formula for the customer and the business because it represents a benefit for both.”


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