Customer targets are too frequently missed

How many businesses can say that they know their customers inside out? Very few indeed. The importance of obtaining high-quality demographic information has been a hot marketing topic for years, but businesses are still getting it wrong. The efficiency and process of “getting to know your customer” can be improved if the right tools are used to obtain the right information in the first instance.

Many businesses make the mistake of looking at a customer’s recent purchases and assuming they understand their buying habits – but people change and what is of interest at that time may not be two months later. All too often businesses end up mis-targeting the customer altogether.

Surely technology is at the stage where businesses have no excuse for anything but total accuracy all of the time? Simply bombarding customers with irrelevant material is lazy and a waste of money. What needs to change is how businesses obtain customer information and how they use it to achieve the desired results.

What is needed is technology that allows you to deliver promotions in a highly targeted way, directly to the people who have already expressed an interest in the products being promoted. Tracking and reporting on each consumer in terms of what they are buying, what they are interested in, when they are interested in it and why, is vital. It sounds ideal, but for many, this level of customer targeting is still a long way away. Targeting customers needs to go beyond monitoring buying habits with no real sense of understanding. When this happens, businesses can say they know who their customers are and can benefit from true one-to-one marketing.

David Muir

Chief executive

BluRoute

Salisbury, Wiltshire

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