What Is Customer Analysis?
Customer analysis is an important part of any marketing plan. Analysing your customers allows you to define who your target market is, and decide how to reach them.
Customer analysis and analytics reveal the most necessary information for any marketing plan. Let the competition worry about keeping up: learn who the target market is and how you can stay ahead.
A customer analysis will do three main things:
- Identify the target customer
- Understand the needs of the customer
- Show how the product or service meets the customers’ needs or wants
Who Are Your Customers?
You can learn more about your customers in a variety of ways, and a mix of research methods will give the most accurate results. Gather as much information as possible, and do not fall into thinking details are irrelevant. You will need to collect information about:
- Other brands they enjoy
- Publications they read
- Other relevant information
Talking to your customers is the best way of finding out about them in their own words, however this does come with biases.
This can be reduced by complementing that research with sales data, CRM data, and speaking to customer-facing employees. Social data can also elaborate your understanding by providing a more holistic view of the groups.
Segment These Groups
Customer analysis cannot be completed without audience segmentation, splitting your audience into groups whose members are homogenous while being distinct from other groups. Segmentation criteria should be:
- Measurable: Your analysis should identify the size of a market segment to decide what extent efforts should be focused on the segment
- Distinguishable: Observable differences that are clearly defined must exist in order to characterise the segments
- Substantial: The market needs to be large enough to justify segmenting, with each segment substantial enough to make it worthwhile
- Financial: There will be additional costs when marketing to multiple, separate groups, so the predicted income must exceed these costs
- Accessible: Your marketing messages should be accessible to each market segment. Different groups will respond better to different forms of advertising
Develop Customer Profiles
Take your data, segmentation criteria, educated guesswork and develop buyer personas. It helps to have personas so you can visualise a human rather than aiming for an abstract idea.
- Background and responsibilities: including job title, career path, and their primary job responsibilities
- Demographics: gender, age, income, family and location
- Communication: which channels do they prefer? What is their demeanor? Do they have an assistant?
- Media and influencers: which publications do they follow, and which individuals are leading the conversation in their world?
- Challenges vs proposition: the challenges they face in implementing their primary job goals and how your product or service to help them overcome those issues
- Objections: common reasons why this persona wouldn’t choose your product
- Common language: what language should you use to appeal to their needs?
- Quotes: adding some qualitative data in the form of quotes can really help to bring those personas to life and remind you there are real people behind these models
Discover Their Needs
Get a good idea of what the customer needs are. By understanding their needs, you can tailor your output towards answering these questions.
There are numerous ways to discover what your customers’ pain points are:
- Ask them
- Consider past actions
- Look at questions asked online
- Look at job adverts for your target customers
- Join LinkedIn professional groups
- Social intelligence
Meet Their Needs
Once the research has been completed, customer groups and their needs are outlined, you should connect the dots to your brand and how you can meet those needs. This should just be a matter of discussing and brainstorming.