Smart marketers always put their smart customers front and center. Following are the top customer-centric strategies for doing so that we've highlighted throughout the year–strategies that will also serve you (and your customers) well in 2013.
1. Learn what makes one customer different from another, and tailor your communications, products, and services based on this understanding.
2. Actively segment your customers into the smallest logical groups, based on their wants, needs, and values.
3. Make sure your Web site remembers what your customers have purchased, what they did, where they looked, and what interests them.
4. Integrate customer data, and make it easily accessible across your organization (not stuck in silos).
5. Regularly gather and analyze outside-in views of the customer experience (voice-of-the-customer research, customer journey maps, etc.), and act on what you find.
6. Actively learn from and respond intelligently to the customer data being generated by your current digital relationships and interactions.
7. Aggregate, analyze, repurpose, and use customer data to get–and keep–your customers engaged.
8. Ensure every touchpoint–whether or not you control it–reinforces your brand and creates a positive impression at the point where you interact with your customers.
9. As your customers move from one channel to the next, make certain your touchpoints, and the systems that deliver them, seamlessly hand off from channel to channel.
10. Design touchpoints, and the systems gathering and acting on the data they create, to work together to build ever smarter and more personalized interactions.
11. Identify and eliminate redundant touchpoints. You’ll save time, money, and resources in the process.
12. Continually look for and find ways to build smart touchpoints right into your products and services.
13. Reasonably empower your employees to solve customer problems and improve customer experiences.
14. Align your reward structures–both formal compensation and informal rewards–with the desired actions of your employees and the needs of your most valuable customers.
15. Embrace disruptive forces and digital innovation to automate the process of building stronger relationships, selling more products, and simplifying your supply chains.