Thanks to the fast-paced digital world, consumers and their needs and preferences are constantly changing. Trying to keep up with these changes would be nearly impossible without customer insight.
But what is customer insight?
And how can it help not only stay on top of your evolving customers but go beyond that?
This comprehensive guide will help you understand customer insight, where to find it, and real-life examples from other companies on how to use it.
What is customer insight?
Customer insight is analyzing and understanding your customers’ behavior, feedback, and interactions so you can create a solution that better suits their needs.
Why is customer insight important?
How can you help your customers with their needs if you’re not sure what they are?
That’s where customer insight comes in. It lets you see what’s working, who it’s working for, how you can optimize it to help those who don’t see its merit, and much more. Depending on how much insight you can analyze, you might notice a deeper pattern like why certain customers need a product like yours, where they were in their lives that led to them looking for this solution, and how they expect their lives to change from using it.
Overall, when used right, customer insight can make your business stand out above the rest, and it can help make your customers’ lives easier on a deeper, more emotion-driven level.
Where to get customer insight from?
You’d be surprised to know that any business is practically surrounded by customer insight that’s waiting to be used. The key is to know where to look, and we’re covering that here.
Customer insight doesn’t have to feel like rocket science. If you want to know what your customers are thinking, just ask. You can get user feedback through phone calls, interviews, or behavioral, NPS, user experience, or customer satisfaction surveys.
These feedback methods will provide incredible insight into your customers from their own words. But executing it isn’t always that straightforward.
One thing to note is that not all your customers that you ask will give you feedback, and of course, that’s normal. Though, depending on your audience, you can always sweeten the deal by offering an incentive.
NPS and automated behavioral-based surveys are pretty short and straight to the point. However, other methods like user experience surveys are more in-depth but can be more challenging to find the appropriate question length and amount. Fortunately, some of the best online survey software solutions that you can use can help you find the perfect size and question type for your audience.
Unlike customer feedback, your customers’ reviews of your business are their 100% unbiased opinion of you. We’re not saying that your customer feedback isn’t valuable, just that they might feel pressured not to give their unfiltered opinion since you’re the one asking for it. But they’ll be more forthcoming on third-party sites such as Google reviews, Yelp, and review forums.
3. Customer support tickets
Your support team and chatbot tools are a treasure trove of customer insight. With both methods, your customers are reaching out to you and telling you in their own words what problems they’re experiencing.
4. Behavior analytics
What your customers say is important, but their actions are too. With behavior monitoring, you can see how your customers or potential customers are interacting with your business by using Google analytics, user testing, and heatmaps, to name a few. These tools can quickly help you see where they’re dropping off on your website and help you identify any patterns and trends that might need your attention.
5. Social listening
Social listening lets you see how your audience is talking about your business on social media. And just like reviews, data you find from social listening is their raw, unfiltered opinion of your business. So whether it’s positive or negative, you know they’re expressing their true feelings.
Besides your business, you can also monitor conversations around your competitors, trends, influencers, or your industry in general.
6. A/B Testing
When you’re trying to see what’s working and what isn’t, one thing that takes the guesswork out of it is A/B testing. A/B testing lets you split test two variables, compares consumer insight from it, and helps you make more informed decisions to improve your customer experience and CRO.
7. Predictive analytics
Predictive analytics uses past, historical data to predict future outcomes. Essentially, it takes customer data and transforms it into customer knowledge that you can use to understand and assist your customers. So, for example, by using previous data you’ve collected on customer churn, predictive analytics will help you identify what customers are at-risk of churning, which you can then use to help those customer segments effectively.
How to use customer insight?
Having customer insight is only part of the battle; now, you have to use it in a way that’ll make a lasting impact on your customers and business. We’ll cover a few ways you can do this below.
1. Enhance your customers’ journey
Your customer’s journey isn’t a straight line from a conversion to a customer that’s loyal forever. It’s much more complex than that with their experience constantly changing and sometimes ends with them leaving altogether.
But when you’re using customer insight, you can identify patterns and see where customers are stalling or churning.
Also, customer insight can help you offer a more seamless experience for them. For example, suppose you noticed that specific customer segments never interacted with your product through your customer engagement platform and were more likely to churn. In that case, you can take this data and identify why it’s not working. Once done, take more proactive measures to prevent them from leaving.
Another example is that you found through social listening that the identity verification process was too cumbersome, and that’s why users left before they finished. And as a result, you implemented an electronic signature solution and saw an increase in conversions.
While it’s not always simple fixes like those, you can improve their overall customer experience with customer insight.
2. Fix product-related issues
Your product and development teams are constantly testing and optimizing your product to create a more streamlined solution for your customers. However, they’re not going to catch everything. Without your customers pointing out issues with your product, some of them will fly under the radar.
Depending on how severe the issue is, it can potentially leave a lasting negative impact on your customers. And worst-case scenario, they switch to your competitors. But with user insight, you can get the data you need to fix any problems and be one step closer to building an MVP.
3. Upgrade your existing product
By knowing what your customers like and what they don’t, you’ll be able to create a better, more efficient product. And this insight can also help you add more convenient features to your existing product that’ll make your customer experience on your tool and with your brand more seamless.
You might even be able to offer more related services that — based on customer insight — your customers would like and benefit from, plus it can help increase your customers’ lifetime value.
4. Optimize your marketing strategy
When you’re trying to reach your audience through social media, paid ads, website copy, etc., there’s one thing you can be sure of — your customers want to be heard and understood. No consumer wants to interact with or give their money to a business that hasn’t taken the time to find out what they’re interested in, who they are, and how they’re benefiting from your product.
So, by using your customer insight, you can create a well-timed marketing strategy that’s personalized, relevant, and all-around beneficial to your customer base. And you can do so by marketing Gantt charts that’ll help you optimize your strategy in a timely manner.
5. Equip your customer service teams
Your customers want more than the bare minimum customer service. They have high expectations and expect you to deliver on them. And with insight, you can offer more customer-centric service.
Also, when you’re aware of what’s bothering your customers and what complaints they might have, you can give this information to your teams which can help them better assist your customers themselves.
Examples of how businesses use customer insights
So, what does it look like to use customer insight? Let’s look at ways that businesses have and are currently doing so here.
1. Reebok improves customer experience with personalized homepage copy
In 2020, Reebok wanted to become the “most personalized sports goods brand in the world,” according to Kibo. So, they conducted three different personalization experiences, one of them was personalizing their homepage for returning visitors.
They used data science to identify multiple customer segments. Each of them would be shown a content variant — tailored to them — from the existing homepage copy. They also used ‘mini teaser’ experiences, “Shopper Theme” insights. More so, they also used segmentation across various datasets to personalize their homepage for 90% of their return visitors.
And by doing so, they were able to increase CTR by 12.2% and RPS up to 4.4%.
2. Zenprint uses behavioral analytics to decrease drop off rates
Keeping your customers happy and providing top-tier service is critical to any business’s success. But that’s much easier said than done, especially when your conversion rate is taking a hit due to an unknown variable on your website page.
Zenprint, an online printing company currently known as Gogoprint, experienced the same thing when they had a significant drop-off rate that they weren’t sure what caused it.
So by using behavioral analytics, they were able to identify how users interacted with their product page and what element was responsible for the drop-off.
They noticed that a design layout was the issue, so A/B tested different layouts and decreased their drop-off rate by 7%.
3. Cloudera uses social listening to uncover sentiments
By using social listening, Cloudera, a hybrid data cloud platform, was able to get real-time feedback on how their audience views their business on social media. They were also able to identify social sentiment and gather more in-depth information on their audience through their social listening tool.
Netflix’s AI improves customer experience
Anyone that’s ever used Netflix, an online streaming service, knows how they use their customer insight to create a more personalized, convenient experience for their users. They use machine learning AI to show their customers content tailored to them based on previous shows they’ve watched, similar content, and shows that others who share their interest also watched.
This helps make their customers’ entire experience on their platform seamless and personalized.
4. Pinterest uses insight to empower their audience
Pinterest conducted a survey that showed that 84% of their users say that their platform helped them learn new things. And it also showed that 70% of people search, save, or click through on Pins to learn more.
But the problem is that the barrier between wanting to try something new and actually doing it is vast. So, to help bridge that gap, Pinterest ran a marketing campaign called ‘What If.’
This campaign showed authentic people trying new things that they would typically shy away from.
By conducting campaigns like this, they can help their audience feel heard and validate their claims of who they are — a photo-based inspiration company.
Ultimately, consumers want more personalized experiences from brands they interact with and well-rounded products. And thanks to the ever-evolving access to and ways to gather customer insight.
It is definitely much easier for businesses to deliver on that front.
So, with these examples, we hope you’re able to brainstorm your way into this.
And, that you can use your customer insight to its maximum potential.
I like that you talked about how customer insight could let you see what’s working, who it’s working for, how you could optimize it to help those who don’t see its merit, and much more. I was reading up about marketing last night and I just learned about consumer insights. From that I gathered, it seems consumer insight services is being offered now too, which sounds quite convenient.