Make investments to really understand the motivations of your consumers
These organizations go beyond simple surveys. They’re driven by a curiosity to seek out and understand what makes their customers different and what makes them tick.
Build conviction around the size of the prize
Before making the jump to prioritize segments, make sure there’s a case for value — a large enough “profit pool” available through serving the client over their lifetime, and a clear pathway to access it. Most organizations need to believe the case for investment in order to commit to making real trade-offs on resources allocation. Organizations that are successful in winning with consumers know how to show the economic and shareholder value of focusing on segments.
Rally the organization around a segment-focused view
While consumer segmentation can be a rigorous and complex mathematical exercise, organizations that own segments make their segmentation relatable and accessible to all employees. They engage the organization to make sure there’s understanding and alignment around the types of customers the enterprise aspires to serve (i.e. which segments and how were they developed), why they’re the focus segment and how to win with them (calling out the key drivers that matter).
Embrace your competitive position and commit to do better
Successful consumer-driven organizations recognize that they’re always facing competition. Using insights about consumers and how they decide, they understand who else their customers are considering for the need they’re serving. They relentlessly focus on being the uncontested leader of the things that matter most to the customers they choose to serve.
Make choices and focus your investments (make real trade-offs)
Arguably one of the most challenging values to bring to life, organizations that successfully win in segments make real prioritization decision. They focus their organization on their priority segments; which means that other initiatives may not get funded. Top segment priorities get the best service levels from the internal organization, and they’re often provided the best talent, the most investment and “first call” on resources. This could be uncomfortable and lead to difficult choices, but success is built on focus.
Design with your customers, and don’t compromise on the things that matter
Organizations that are segment focused bring their target customers into the design process. They understand what matters and use customers to co-create products and service experiences. Importantly, they focus on designing end-to-end experiences, products and service journeys rather than discrete attributes or “moments in time”. They recognize that consumers evaluate an end-to-end experience and that their experience is only as strong as the weakest link in the process. Making target customers design partners in this iterative process increases the likelihood of building lasting emotional connections with their needs.
Measure relentlessly and have honest conversations about performance
As important as the base product and service design are, successful segment-led organizations recognize they’re on a journey with their customers. They employ a suite of short-loop (e.g. Touchpoint NPS) and long-loop (e.g. relationship engagement measures) feedback systems, which make sure there’s a steady pulse check of the customer relationship. They align measurement with strategy and want to understand if they’re known by their target customers for the things they want to be known for. What’s more, they want to find out if “spikes” in recognition are translating into real incremental gains in customer value (e.g. retention, share of wallet, profitability).