Table of Contents
Why we need a user-centric approach to marketing?
It is clear to everyone that since the use of search engines on the Internet, information has become transparent and accessible to everyone. In addition, there are all the promising (product) advertisements, blog posts or comparison sites that make it easier for consumers to decide on a product. This information is of course also shared via Sharelinks, so that really good blog posts have the opportunity to go “viral” all over the world.
In contrast, negative customer reviews that were written about a product in an online shop, for example, can no longer be easily deleted. From the customer’s point of view, this is of course good, so that other customers can be informed about defects or poor service. However, from the point of view of the product operator, it can quickly happen that the image of the company or the branding, can cause considerable damage. The last point in particular shows how important it is to maintain good customer relationships and to build long-term, sustainable customer relationships.
With the user-centric marketing approach there is one major difference compared to traditional marketing. Much more effort is put into user research and user experience, and the status quo is constantly questioned in order, at best, to change the parameters and optimize the results. Very important, however, after the end of the campaign, the new project is not quickly rushed into, but feedback from customers and users continues to be obtained in order to bring about recurring improvements. After all, this is also the great advantage of growth marketing, in order to still ensure massive and positive results with a small budget and clever marketing hacks.
"The best digital marketing strategy is one that focuses on providing value to the consumer, not on promoting a product or service."
How do we start to adopt a user-centric approach
For a user-centric approach, it is important to know the customers and users exactly. Ask the right questions about what is preoccupying them, what are their goals, and what are their main pain points. From this you can then create so-called empathy maps, which, unlike user personas, not only record a specific point in time of the user, but also for a longer period of time in order to also perceive and represent changes in the customer experience. It is also important to find out which channels the target group is using, why and at what times, where they spend the longest, who they follow, what they share and comment on, and so on.
It’s also good to design short and simple surveys to get a fairly accurate picture of the target audience. In order to get as many participants as possible for a survey, it is worth adding a small gift after filling in the questions as motivation. be an eBook or a list of tips and tricks on specific topics, the main thing is that there is an incentive to complete the survey.
Another important thing with product or service pages is the use of FAQ boards or a knowledgebase to clarify open questions in advance and the user can find satisfactory answers to his questions. There is nothing worse than when the user cannot find any answers and leaves the page in frustration. This is also extremely important for the conversion rate.
The best digital marketing campaigns are those who involve the user in their creation in some way. That may be through prototyping campaigns and testing them with users, as user experience designers have been doing for years. However, it could also be encouraging users to contribute content to a campaign via social media or community engagement.
Why and how you should be meeting your audience in person?
It is very important to meet your target group in person on a regular basis (at least once a month). At the meetings, it makes perfect sense to present practical elements of the customer campaigns and to involve the customers in order to test suggestions for improvement live or to get food for thought for further Cape campaigns.
Alternatively, the meetings can also be carried out remotely via zoom, skype, gotomeetings, webex or other collaboration tools. This has the great advantage that the users do not have to rely on locations and thus save time for traffic and travel. Remote usability tests can also be carried out, but in return, no questions should be asked during the meeting and the user should not be interrupted during his task, as the entire meeting must be recorded and later evaluated and analyzed. The aim is to get a result that is as unadulterated as possible without any influence from the moderator / interviewer. “Lookback” is often used as a useful tool for screen recording and analysis.
Customer journey mapping: What is it and why it can help?
Customer journey mapping is a great tool for visualizing what we know about our audience, and how they interact with your organization. It also helps to frame your campaigns, enabling you to see how they fit into the broader picture, and support the journey. But, remember, customer journey mappingis not meant to be 100% accurate. It’s a story about the user, that’s designed to help us understand the user better.
In order to create a successful customer journey map, it is advantageous if as many participants as possible who have contact with potential customers are involved. This could e.g. Be people from sales, customer support, social media channels, user research, IT & data science or from the management sector. As a practical application example, let’s look at an e-commerce shop, here the customer journey is broken down into a maximum of 5-6 steps (recognizing a need, researching options, making a purchase, getting that purchase delivered and then the post sales support). It is only important that all steps are examined in detail and that possible pitfalls are identified at an early stage.
Involve the user in your campaign design
As I already mentioned before, it makes a lot of sense to involve the users as early as possible, preferably before the creation of the campaign. It is important to find out with which eyes the user sees the marketing company and, if possible, to use keywords such as describes innovative, minimalist, creative or professional. These are useful tips for designers and copywriters to give you a better understanding of the company’s external presentation and cooperate identity.
How to find the right audience for your test users from outside which are not “institutionalized in your organizations”? You need to start establishing the culture of user testing within your organization. The best solution would be to have real test users, but if you don’t have them right now Its better to start and ask family and friends then not to start.
"We need user experience marketers as much as we need user experience designers."
How to refine your campaigns post launch
Its very important top reflect after all the tests that have been done and do a short review with things that were good or where is still optimization potential. There are existing a bunch of analytic tools on the market. Most common is I guess Google analytics, where you can see drop-off-points of the visitors from your website. With recording tools like hotjar you can capture user bahaviour and how they moving around the website. And there is of course A/B testing like google optimize (free) or visual web optimizer (cost) for fixing the problems.
So launching a campaign should really be seen as the midpoint of your project, not the end. Once a campaign is live, you will begin to gain valuable insights into how users behave in the real world. Use analytics to identify drop-off points in the conversion funnel and tools like heat maps and visitor recordings to understand where the problem is, what the problem is on the pageand finally, make use of A/B testingto test different solutionsto see which approach improves conversion the most.
The more you include the user in the process rather than fixating on your internal perspective, the more effective your campaigns will beand the bigger an improvementit will make to your conversion rate.0