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Approaching your customers in a different way

January 24, 2020
3 min

Understanding that your customers are also human, and are endowed with feelings and emotions, is one of the greatest challenges of modern commerce. Apparently, some companies are still struggling to come to terms with this. They have a general awareness of the need to place customers at the heart of their strategy, but they still need to take action…

So how can we rethink our economic model in a more humane way and align it with the expectations of today's and tomorrow's consumers?

First of all, who are today's consumers and what are their expectations?

The goal today is not just to acquire customers, but to retain them over the long term. Companies must integrate this strategy and adapt their actions to satisfy their customers. Consumers are complete beings who must be understood as whole persons, while also considering the uniqueness of each individual. Thus, as part of a collaborative approach, one of the priorities is to understand their emotions in order to offer services and products that are more personalized. Moving from customer ambassador to customer activist.

Today, more than 50% of the world's population is under the age of 30. The purchasing paths of Generations Y and Z represent new expectations and their behavior is becoming the norm.

Who are the Millennials?

One thing is sure, if they are not satisfied, they will make it known and go elsewhere.

Attracted by free, instantaneous, trustworthy and personalized service, today's young people are looking for experiences, stimulation and novelty.

They are looking for a personalized customer experience that looks just like them. Although they are more determined and more volatile, they are also highly committed customers. Twenty-eight percent of Millennials leave reviews on social networks, 96% recommend brands to their friends and family, and 96% recommend brands to others if they are satisfied. In fact, today, people rely more on reviews on social media than on a brand's advertising strategy.

Generation Y (people born between 1980 and 2000) and Generation Z, which comes after it, are about to revolutionize the economy of tomorrow.

As Emmanuel Duez reminded us at a Positive Economy conference, millennials represent "a generation symptomatic of a change in the world that extends far beyond themselves." Everything needs to be reinvented. And we must adapt to these changes.

The key is to work together to address the uniqueness of each individual and to establish more direct and more authentic relationships.

So, how can companies do this?

It's all about asking the right questions, such as: what do my customers want? What are their expectations? What are their preferences and interests? What should I base my presentation and my offer on? Communication is a two-way street.

Sharing customer knowledge is essential for the whole team. Beyond merely being involved, people need to feel committed. The challenge involves genuine attachment and loyalty, both within the company and externally.

Silos need to be broken down and there is a need for communication. Mutual exchange is the watchword for a better and more accurate understanding of your customers.

Many companies still operate on a one-to-few basis, instead of a one-to-one basis, which is what we are now striving for. A unified, 360° view of our customers is necessary because the wide range of channels that are now available must be combined with a consistent consumer experience.

Using technology as a springboard, and not as an end in itself, can also be an integral part of this project. Once you have established a close relationship with your customers, you can enhance and strengthen this relationship.

Some brands today go so far as to involve their customers in the co-production of goods and services, or in the improvement of products. Decathlon, for example, withdraws products that have not achieved at least a score of 3 out of 5 in customer reviews within one month. These products are only offered for sale again after they have been improved.


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