Today's consumers are more perceptive and empowered than ever. The traditional model of one-way brand communication needed to be updated. With consumer intelligence, brands can now truly understand their customers. With so much choice on the market, brands need to show they care, otherwise consumers will go elsewhere.
This article will explore how consumer intelligence promotes a deeper connection, trust, and loyalty between consumers and brands. You will learn how to humanize your interactions by recognizing genuine emotions and building communities.
Enrich customer experience and ultimately forge more meaningful and lasting relationships!
Humanizing Brand Interactions
Consumer intelligence is essential for businesses to succeed in the market. It involves analyzing data on consumer behavior, preferences, and attitudes. This information helps brands make informed decisions and improve their products and services to better meet the needs of their customers. Data sources for consumer intelligence include market research, social media analysis, customer feedback, and demographic information.
How can these data points translate into a more personal relationship between your brand and customers?
Personalization, honesty, transparency
Let's start with personalization.
With access to so much data about your customers, category, and competition, it would be unwise not to tap in to that potential. Personalization is becoming a standard practice for brands wanting meaningful engagement with customers.
In practice, this personalization can take many forms.
First, you can address your customers' pain points. Showing that your brand is aligned with their needs goes a long way. You can achieve that by engaging in online conversations, responding to comments, and answering questions. Being empathic in your communication will always be beneficial.
Being transparent and honest about your brand is the other side. That's especially important for beauty brands. Issues of sustainability and lack of information about animal cruelty can make or break you. Being open about the ingredients or manufacturing methods can show customers, including potential ones, that they can trust you.
Finally, remember that your brand comprises people who, like anyone else, have their passions, struggles, and values. Make people stand out in your communication. This personal touch gives the brand a human face, often more accessible for consumers to connect with than a faceless corporation.
It's great to talk about engaging with users in a meaningful way. But how do you know your message resonates with your customers? Do they all share the same values and reasons to purchase your products, or can they be split into groups?
That's one of the powers of consumer intelligence — segmentation! And this, too, can be approached in a variety of ways. You can analyze data from website traffic with rich segmentation options from Google. This includes division by demographic, like age or gender, geographic, and behavioral segmentation models.
Another way to segment your users is with your preferred CRM or email database. In addition to what GA4 is offering, you can divide your customers by purchase history, engagement level, or average basket value.
That, however, has a shortcoming. You can only analyze what your users are doing, not why. With modern brand trackers like ProQuo AI, you can understand what drives people to your products and their demographic. This will allow you to tailor your messaging, campaigns, and visuals to specific groups based on gender, age, and whether they are users or non-users of your products.
Build a community
Market research is crucial for building thriving brand communities. It provides insights into customer preferences and behaviors, enabling brands to create communities that foster engagement, authenticity, and shared values.
Communities create genuine connections and conversations between customers and brands. You can involve customers in co-creating and shaping products, demonstrating a commitment to meeting their needs. In addition, creating exclusive experiences and events strengthens the community's sense of belonging and fosters brand loyalty, building lasting relationships beyond transactions.
These communities also encourage user-generated content (UGC) that reflects real customer experiences and perspectives, further humanizing the brand.
Let People Have Their Say
There's no better way to humanize a brand than to let people have their say.
User-generated content (UGC) is a powerful tool that brands can use to demonstrate their relevance in people's lives. When users share content related to a brand, it shows a genuine connection and loyalty.
Using UGC shows that brands are willing to listen to their customers and incorporate their voices into your narrative. You can show that you value consumers' opinions and are eager to highlight these genuine voices, leading to more meaningful interactions. Thanks to UGC, brands are more approachable, transparent, and relatable.
Recognize Real Emotions
Accessing your customers' thoughts has become much easier in the digital age thanks to consumer intelligence. From social listening, enabling you to search the Internet for any mention about your brand, to reviews, and ending with people letting everyone know what they think via social media.
The problem with understanding your audience by analyzing what is said about the brand of the Internet was best explained by David Ogilvy:
"People don't think what they feel, don't say what they think, and don't do what they say."
To be able to truly engage with your customers, you not only need to know what they think but what they feel. This can foster the connection between your brand and potential and existing customers.
This can be achieved by understanding how our brains work. System 1 is responsible for automatic, responsive thinking, while System 2 covers analytical, deliberate thought. 95% of purchasing decisions are made via System 1 unless it's a house or any life-long commitments that require a more rational decision.
At ProQuo AI, we use an industry-leading Implicit Response Timing (IRT) approach that ensures we capture respondents' feelings.
If they respond quickly, we know they feel strongly about that aspect of your brand.
If they hesitate, we know they're less sure.
And if they take too long, we know they've begun thinking, not feeling.
This form of IRT leads to cleaner data, eliminating 20-30% of inaccurate responses compared to the industry standard of 7-8%.
Access real-time feedback
Our world moves at a much faster pace than ever before. Trends change, people's shopping habits change, and the markets change. All that requires a much faster response to what is happening because, as you know, the competition never sleeps.
You can see the trends shaping up in real-time with live customer intelligence. That's an edge you can use to tailor your new products or reframe your current offerings to best reflect what your customers need.
Another helpful way to be more empathetic to your brand's audience is to ask open-ended questions about what they need and how your products could be improved. With ProQuo AI, you can have an answer within 48 hours, collecting 300 responses from the users and non-users of your brand. With such a quick turnaround, you can iterate your campaigns much faster.
Create relationships that last
At the end of the day, marketing is about building and fostering lasting relationships. Customer intelligence is an irreplaceable piece of that puzzle. One should be used regularly, strategically, and with an open mind. After all, brand management is not a sprint — it's a marathon.
The perception of your brand will change for a multitude of reasons. Keeping a close watch on these trends is the best way to not lose touch with your customers, competition, and category.
One of the foundational ideas of ProQuo AI was that to truly succeed in brand marketing, you need to establish a quid pro quo with your customers. A relationship based on a set of Drivers (factors) that influence how your brand is perceived. These Drivers include Innovation, Value for Money, and Connection; see our guide to the 16 Drivers of Brand Equity for more.