While working at a Fortune 100 Company for nine years then moving out to lead the Flawless Inbound team to help to disrupt the traditional Online Marketing world. I was very fascinated by Customer behaviour. What kinds of digital offerings most deeply engage customers in their digital lives?
I started by looking at some cases—across our existing clients but also more in the consumer and B2B industries—of the products, services, communications, and experiences that had been embraced and adopted by customers during the first two decades of the World Wide Web and the mobile Internet.
What I found was a recurring pattern of five behaviours that drive the adoption of new digital experiences. I call these the five core behaviors of a network
Access: They Seek To access Digital Data, Content and interactions as quickly, Easily, and flexible as possible. Any offering that enhances this access is incredibly compelling.
Think of text messaging on early mobile phones, which revolutionized communications with the ability to receive and send messages from anywhere at anytime.
From the convenience of e-commerce to today’s latest instant messaging apps, Customers are drawn to anything that provides the immediacy of simple, instant access.
Discuss with your leadership team a framework to improve online Access for your prospects
Engage: They seek to engage with digital content that is sensory, interactive and relevant to their needs. From the early popularity of web portals to the spread of online video, to the next-generation virtual realities. Their Digital desires are marked by a thirst for content. The old media adage that “Content is King" is right and there is no question that the desire to engage with content is a key driver of customer behaviour.
How are you transforming Mass online Marketing to one to one interaction and engagement in your online marketing strategy. How do you become a Source of valued content for your customer?
Customize: they seek to customize their experiences by choosing and modifying a wide assortment of information products, and services. In a generation, customers have gone from having a handful of television channels options to a digital world with more than a trillion webpages. They have been trained by their digital networks to expect ever more options for personal choice, and they like this. From Pandora’s personalized radio streams to Google’s Search bar that anticipates their search terms when they type just a few characters, they are drawn to increasingly customized experiences.
How do you implement customization in your online marketing plans, how have you made your offering adaptable to your customer’s needs?
Connect: They seek to connect with one another by sharing their experiences, ideas, and opinions through text, images, and social links. This behaviour has driven the entire explosion of social media—from blogging to social networks like Facebook or LinkedIn, to online niche communities that gather around a shared passion, vocation, or viewpoint. All of these incredibly popular platforms are driven by the behaviour of individuals using small bits of text and images to signal to others that “here is where I am, what I’m thinking, what I see.”
Challenge your Leadership team to build an online strategy to become part of your Customer’s conversation
Collaborate: As social beings, your customers are naturally drawn to work together. Accordingly, they seek to collaborate on projects and goals through open platforms. This is the most complex and difficult of these five behaviours, but it doesn’t stop them from trying. Whether building open-source software together, raising money for causes they believe in, or organizing write-ins and protest around the world, they seek collaboration.
How can you invite your Customer to build your enterprise?
The key here that these Customer behaviours can be leverages though a set of corresponding customer network strategies. I have used them in Strategic Planning workshop before either you are a leader in a B2B versus a B2C organization. One big mistake I found that all leaders fall into is the trap of technology: First thinking, "What's our Twitter Video Strategy? Are we using Chatbots, How would Analytic and Machine learning help our Marketing Division?"
Try to focus instead on value to the customer and the business. Then backword-engineer a Buyer's Journey that will achieve this value for your customer.
I hope this article was of help to you to be able to go back and implement as part of your Digital marketing strategy. This is my high-level notes to prepare for my next Digital Marketing Framework 4.0 Workshop, Stay tuned.