The five customers you must satisfy to make 2011 a success
The Wall Street Journal recently identified the 'just-in-time consumer' as a new customer type that has been shaped by the recession. But there are potentially another five customer types that have emerged that businesses must keep in mind when designing and delivering products, services and experiences.
- The value or discount customer – Following two years of heavy discounting, today’s customers face difficulties correlating value with price. Bargains have become the rule and not the exception for this customer.
- The mistrusting customer – Following the disappearance of major brands from Circuit City to Lehman Brothers coupled with the challenges experienced by major brands such as Toyota, today’s customer is skeptical and lacks trusts in once reliable institutions.
- The fearful customer – This long economic distress shows no end in sight. Customers remain fearful over job security and their ability to help keep their loved ones afloat. This fear is becoming existential and persists during any transaction owing to the hesitation and fear over the short- and long-term.
- The do-it-yourself customer – Many personal sacrifices have been made during these challenging economic times. Customers have given up indulgences as well as other products and services they might have considered basic just a few years ago. Our customers today are inclined to do things themselves to ensure that their scope of sacrifices need not grow any further.
- The small indulgence customer – Our customers are still human and want little more than to catch the occasional break. All their fears and mistrust are weighing heavily on them and they are reluctant to indulge on expensive vacations or a lavish night out on the town. They are increasingly substituting their lavish desires breaks with small indulgences. Small and personal indulgences are the manner in which customers are creating a small sanctuary away from their pressures and fears.
Lior Arussy is the founder and president of Strativity Group, a global customer experience research and consulting firm specialising in design, innovation and deployment of differentiating, profitable customer experiences. His books include Excellence Every Day: Make the Daily Choice and Passionate & Profitable: Why Customer Strategies Fail and 10 Steps To Do Them Right!
His latest book is Customer Experience Strategy: The Complete Guide From Innovation To Execution.