Customer Centric

Why Putting the Customer First Should be Top Priority in Your Inbound Marketing

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Jay Dillon

Director of Strategy and Creative at Inbound Experts
Jay is a digital marketer and producer whose creative and technical skills have developed digital brand strategies and sales campaigns using a range of complex internet applications from stand-alone websites through to Facebook API integrations.
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Sure, you might have a fascinating product or a great new service that you just know will be the new disruption in your industry.

That’s all well and good, but if you haven’t spent a significant chunk of time considering one specific part of your business model, the latest research shows you’re missing the boat.

We’re talking about the customer.

A new report from Experian shows that CMOs, whose departments often best understand their potential customers, are gaining more influence and leading the way when it comes to building customer-centric organisations. 

How CMOs Are Promoting Customer-First Philosophies

Global information services company Experian reports that 60% of Australian businesses are actively practising customer-centric change. This is good news for inbound marketers: it means that companies are focusing on making themselves more attractive to customers instead of devoting their budgets to traditional outreach marketing.

Why is this change happening? In part, the rise of the CMO. More than 6 out of every 10 Australian CMOs surveyed say that their influence has increased in the past year. But about 43% still think that the pace of change is too slow.

This number makes it apparent that organisations are finally realising that a good marketing team holds a critical component of business success: deep insights into the needs and desires of their ideal customers.

Studies like these are good indicators that savvy enterprises in Australia will continue to aggressively move towards making their organisation customer-centric, a shift that will affect not just marketing but every department of the business.

Applying Customer-Centric Transformations to Your Company

As always, we know you are hungry to learn what this means for your own efforts as an inbound marketer. We believe that there are two core actions that you can take to begin or further a customer-centric transformation within your organisation:

  • Gather the data. In a recent post, we told you that data analysis was one of the most sought-after skills for employers in Australia. This isn’t a coincidence: underneath all the buzzwords like “agility” and “customer-centric transformation,” there has to be a solid foundation of data about your customers. You don’t need a six or seven-figure budget to create this foundation. You could use a method as basic as an email survey and a spreadsheet and still get results. If you have the budget, you can invest in a more sophisticated tool like Pardot or HubSpot, to help you deeply integrate your customer data with your sales efforts.
  • Take chances. In an age when most conservative business leaders are choosing to play it safe and stick to their old ways, the true innovators aren’t worrying about getting a little mud on their face. Only 50% of the most customer-centric organisations surveyed reported that their business wouldn’t accept failure. To set yourself apart, you’ve got to do something that will stand out, even if it seems risky. Create a guerrilla marketing campaign. Unveil a side of your business that no one has seen before. Tell a story. Anything that will help bring positive attention to your business is usually a good thing, so be creative!

It’s clear that many big companies in Australia are getting the hint: in the age of inbound, the customer is the Alpha and Omega. Only time will tell which organisations can make the shift and which ones will be left behind in the dust.

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