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Giving your customer a voice

Does your Data & Insights team champion the customer within your business? By giving the customer a voice through the data and insights outputs, is it your team that is ensuring decision-making is made through a customer-centric lens?

For the majority of the Data & Insights teams we meet and have as clients, the answer is a resounding ‘yes’. What is interesting are the different approaches taken and the degree to which the teams see this as their mission.

From our perspective, a lot of our content engagement revolves around giving the customer a voice through regular newsletters that are sent to stakeholders across the organisation. Designed to strike the right balance between encouragement and critique, these newsletters expose decision-makers at all levels to the realities of what customers are thinking, saying and doing on anything from brand to product.

While our job is to produce great content that stimulates the right sort of decision-making and simply keeps the customer front of mind, the challenges of producing the content expose the internal battles and priorities within Data & Insights teams. Receiving briefs from members of the Data & Insights teams, it is often a battle to pull out the customer story from the commercial challenges.

Why does this happen? Largely because the content programmes are hanging off the coattails of existing data and research. As such, we are repurposing what has already been created and that research is typically commercially driven. However, what this exposes is a disconnect between the customer-centric strategic objective of teams and the tactical need to fulfil the business brief when the research is being conducted or the data interrogated.

The answer is not to simply direct new forms of customer-centric research, largely because that is not financially practical or desirable. Instead, the solution lies in working with the team to identify and promote the customer priorities for the team and ensure there is widespread understanding and championing of these objectives within their day-to-day work. After all, a newsletter is just a single tool.

To succeed in giving the customer a voice across the business requires a 360 degree approach across all forms of stakeholder engagement.

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