While many of us have changed the way we do business, Australian’s have also changed the ways that they engage with businesses.
The mindset of consumers from 18 months ago is a very different person today. A transformation has taken place for many, as the events of the past few years left people reassessing their personal values and searching for the elusive ‘meaning of life’. It’s evident then, that the strategies you had in place last year may not be the most effective way to engage and serve your audience moving forward. For organisations who haven’t checked in with their audience over the past 12-18 months, now is the time to put your ear to the ground and get clear on how and where your audiences needs have changed in order to unlock greater possibilities and brand growth for the year ahead.
If they weren’t already, Australian consumers are now more conscious of what they spend their money on and who they are spending it with, and more Australians than ever are choosing to support Australian businesses who are having a positive impact on society and our local economy.
What does that mean for brand growth and engagement?
For organisations who have established a brand founded on shared values and an aligned purpose, this shift has the potential to open up a new league of possibility and customer loyalty, while brands built around profit rather than purpose could find themselves locked in transaction-based pricing wars with other price-driven competitors.
With an increase in consumer consciousness across all generations, brands that are true to their cause and are contributing to having a positive impact may be experiencing an increase in new customers engaging in their services. Taking the time to understand this new audiences’ wants and needs (as well as how your existing customers’ needs may have changed), will help to uncover new ways to engage and serve both, strengthening existing relationships while also opening new avenues for future growth.
“If you do not make an emotional connection with customers, then satisfaction is worthless.”
– ‘Customer Satisfaction Doesn’t Count’, Gallup Organization.
Where do you start?
There’s a whole range of ways you can get to know your audience’s values and needs, here are two that we regularly use in our conscious brand process:
Take some time to sit down with people who fit the profile of your ideal customer one-on-one and really get to know them.
- What do they think and feel – What keeps them up at night? What aspirations and preoccupations do they have? what are their expectations?
- What do they see – What is their environment like? Who are the people around them? What other brands do they support and why? What’s a standard day look like for them?
- What do they say and do? – How would they describe themselves? Do they have any hobbies?
- What do they hear? – Who do they turn to for advice? and who influence their decisions? Where do they go for information and to learn? What platforms are they on? What do they read? What do they watch? What associations or networks do they belong to?
- What are their wants and frustrations?
- What are their emotional fears and dreams?
- What is their dominant attitude towards your industry?
Customer Feedback Loops
Set up regular feedback loops for your customers to tell you about their experience with your brand. It will also help you understand if the brand perception you believe you are creating is being accurately received by the market.
- How would they describe your brand and what you do?
- How do they feel before, during and after they have engaged your services?
- What frustrations and pain points do they have?
- What surprises and delights them?
With the internet playing an increasingly important role in facilitating social connection throughout lockdowns, there’s also increased opportunity to use social listening tools to get an understanding of how your brand is talked about and the perception you’ve built.
This new shift in consumer confidence has created some interesting opportunities for brands to engage new audiences. The brands that will thrive from this growth potential are the ones who take the time to deeply understand who these new audiences are, how they perceive value and the shared values that connect with their brand’s purpose.
If you haven’t revisited your brand strategy recently, it could be a good time to dust off the pages and evaluate where the gaps and opportunities are before setting your strategic goals for 2022. If you would like some help with this, our Brand Diagnostic might be a good fit. The process is designed to help businesses identify where the gaps and opportunities are within their current brand, and where to strategically invest their time and energy to achieve the most value and growth moving forward. If you’re not sure, you can book in for a free half hour consultation with one of our brand consultants to see what the best way forward would be for you.