Bob Dylan once wrote “The times they are a changing” and how right he was. Aspects of life have evolved dramatically over the years, to a point that any individual that is plucked from the 1970’s and thrown straight into 2012 would be faced with a world virtually unrecognisable from the one they left behind. The same could also be said for anyone plucked from 2012 and thrown straight into the 1970’s!
Things such as laws and regulations have changed but the one thing that has perhaps seen more change than anything else (and will probably continue to see more change than anything else) is technology.
Technology has evolved from being a large CRT television with 3 or 4 channels to becoming a living, breathing animal that is capable of thinking and outsmarting us mere humans. Technology can process data at a speed that we can only dream of. Technology can travel across the globe faster than we can only dream of. Technology has transformed how we as individuals and businesses live, breath and work.
Businesses in particular make extra effort to get with the times and make use of the latest technology to deliver their services and products and, for better or worse, consumers know this. Because of this consumers’ demands have increased dramatically. Fifty years ago a consumer would have been perfectly happy to take a trip that could last anything up to an entire day to simply do a food shop. Look at present day society and some consumers will only do the food shop via punching a few numbers into a laptop computer and specifically telling the online store where and when they want it delivered to them.
Because these demands have dramatically changed, the task and role of a marketer has dramatically changed as well. Gone are the days of simply broadcasting an advert through television or in a newspaper simply because it was the ‘done’ thing’. Now consumers EXPECT companies to only speak to them if it is a product or service that they WANT to hear about.
Therefore, the challenge for marketers has become to physically know their customers and target audience. Consumers are not willing to listen to marketing messages that are meaningless to them anymore, and nor should they have to be. It is becoming more and more common for marketers to utilise solutions such as CRM packages to monitor their customers and ensure that they are only sending out the information that they know would be useful to the customer.
The message; know your customer, they don’t HAVE to listen to you anymore so putting time and effort into getting to them is vital.
This guest blog is written by John Parish, a distributor and trainer in CRM packages for large and small businesses.