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BizReport : Advertising : October 12, 2020

How brands are missing consumer choice needs

Shoppers around the globe are increasingly sharing their thoughts with brands and merchants via online surveys and customer portals, but are brands doing enough listening? Since the pandemic, one expert believes that marketers must do more to listen and take in the changing needs of their customer base. Here's why.

by Kristina Knight

Consumer voice is a key for marketers not only in the digital space but offline, as well. The problem is that many marketers aren't providing the type of environment where consumers feel they either want to share their opinions or that sharing their opinions will result in any kind of change. This, says one digital expert, has to change for marketers to flourish in a post-pandemic world.

"According to our Summer 2020 Consumer Voice Survey, consumer desire to have their voices heard has remained significantly high from pre to mid-pandemic. Interestingly, it was highest (90%) toward the beginning of social distancing orders in February and March. The ability for consumers to choose how and where their data is shared should be default to expressing their opinions and influencing change in global communities," said Armen Petrosian, Co-Founder and CMO, DISQO. "Consumers want to feel heard and want to see real change, but they also want transparency into the process. Creating an open channel of communication where consumers have the option to choose what and how much of their data is shared is not only effective in gaining more reliable feedback, but is also respectful of those who participate."

Since the COVID pandemic shut down many stores Petrosian notes that there is an even wider gap between what brands and merchants know about their shoppers and how consumers actually feel about even their favorite brands. For this reason, he believes businesses and marketers have to increase their data privacy transparency and to begin nurturing a new relationship with their customer base.

"The first step in ensuring the content you offer matches up with consumer interests is through listening. Although simple, this step is one of the most important components of the entire process, and it begins with a genuine curiosity for new perspectives. Ethical practices, transparency, and a fair value exchange should be at the foundation of this step, making consumers feel in control, able to enact real change and truly heard by brands. Step two involves translating this feedback into action. The opinions you collect are only as valuable as the actions you take to improve," said Petrosian.

Even brands that have solid communication with their customer base could stand to take a more critical look at what their consumers want and need.

"There's always room to improve our relationship and communication with consumers. By building authentic relationships with their client base, being proactive in seeking feedback, and taking the time to truly understand their needs, brands can be in sync with their audiences in a way that's mutually beneficial. Survey Junkie is a 100% opt-in platform that breaks down the options consumers have for sharing their opinion. By giving consumers the choice to share their feedback and incorporating their voice into marketing strategies, brands are able to leverage reliable and accurate information all while improving campaign effectiveness, engagement and user satisfaction for the long-term," said Petrosian.

Tags: advertising, advertising engagement, advertising tips, customer engagement, customer experience, DISQO, ecommerce trends

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