Their needs, not our content

At the CASE Higher Education conference in Edinburgh last week, I gave a presentation on 5 ways marketing won’t change in the next 5 years.

One of the statistics I quoted was that since the dawn of Twitter, there have been a total of 163 billion tweets – 175 million tweets sent from Twitter every day in 2012.

Yet research shows 56% of customer tweets to companies are being ignored (dazeinfo)

So, despite the opportunities provided by social media, despite the hype around the need to engage in conversations with customers, many companies aren’t doing it.

Is it because companies are still broadcasting, not listening to customers?

Or

Is it because their needs are not convenient for our content?

The customer journey from awareness of need through to purchase and aftercare has always been a key focus of marketers.

Marketers, are desperate to start conversations with customers, to show them we care, but do our customers really have the time or inclination to engage with us?

Understanding the decision making process, the sources of information, the touch-points and the key influences in that decision are crucial in developing a relevant marketing communications strategy and tailoring the “content” to customer needs at various point along the way.

It’s become a more complex process which no longer follows the simple AIDA formula of the past – consumers now loop back and forth like spaghetti from broadcast to social to in-store and on-line sources of information and purchasing – but understanding the customer journey and serving them content relevant to their needs will remain central to all successful marketing planning.