What habits have you become so comfortable with that you don’t even notice or question them? With today’s fast-paced world, businesses need to be constantly adapting and preparing for the future.
These thirteen marketing quotes (plus a bonus one!) are amongst my favourites of all time. They will hopefully excite and inspire you to consider what changes you need to make to become even more successful through a customer first strategy.
As is the tradition at C3Centricity, there is a recommended action for you to take for each quote. How many will you complete?
#1. “There may be Customers without Brands, but there are no Brands without Customers.” Anon (>>Click to Tweet<<)
This has to be the most important marketing quote to remember for all of us wanting to be more customer centric. It’s also one of my favourites, as I’m sure you’ve realised!
Brands depend on customers and if companies remember this, then they can only succeed. If however they get so tied up in their products & services that they forget their customers, they may enjoy their work but their brands will always be vulnerable to competition.
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Watch the Customer First Strategy Webinar HERE
#2. “Nothing can add more power to your life than concentrating all your energies on a limited set of targets.” Nido Qubein (>>Click to Tweet<<)
One of the biggest mistakes marketing can make is to not appropriately define its target audience. It is understandably hard for a brand manager to accept that he can’t please all category users and that his target sub-category is smaller than the total category he thinks he could attract.
By trying to please everyone, we end up pleasing no one! So bite the bullet and reduce your target category size by being more precise in selecting and describing your audience.
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Learn the essentials of targeting HERE.
#3. “The more you engage with customers the clearer things become and the easier it is to determine what you should be doing.” John Russell, President, Harley Davidson (>>Click to Tweet<<)
If they aren’t already included, then every employee should have regular customer connections added to their annual objectives. Whether they are the CEO, an Executive Vice-President, a machine operator, sales clerk or brand manager, they all need to understand how their day job impacts the satisfaction of their customers.
Customer connections also inspire new thinking, can identify previously unknown issues and excite everyone to think customer first in everything they do.
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Sign up below for the FREE Customer First Strategy Webinar.
For more ideas about getting to know your customers, join the FREE Customer First Strategy Webinar. In it, I share many Tips, Tools and Templates to improve your Customer Targeting, Understanding & Engagement to Grow your Business Faster.
#4. “If you use standard research methods you will have the same insights as everyone else.” David Nichols (>>Click to Tweet<<)
When was the last time you revised your market research toolbox or refined your insight development process? It’s a rapidly changing world both technologically and societally-speaking. The methods you use to observe, understand and eventually delight your customers should be moving as fast, if not even faster, to stay in touch with the market.
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Attend a 1-Day Catalyst session reviewing all your market research methodologies and metrics. Find out more HERE.
#5. “The structure will automatically provide the pattern for the action which follows.” Donald Curtis (>>Click to Tweet<<)
There has been a lot of discussion about the new roles of the CMO, CIO and the creation of a new CCO (Chief Customer Officer) position. Perhaps it is time for your organisation to review its structure and see if it is still optimal for the business of today, as well as of tomorrow.
As mentioned above, the world is changing rapidly and you need to keep abreast of these changes to stay in the game. Who wants to find themselves the equivalent of the Kodak or Borders of 2017?
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Develop plausible future scenarios to prepare for possible opportunities and threats. Contact us HERE.
#6. “Customer Service shouldn’t be a department, it should be the entire company.” Tony Hsieh, CEO Zappos (>>Click to Tweet<<)
This is one of my all-time favourite quotes from a man I truly admire, for truly “getting” customer centricity. Their slogan is even “Powered by Service”! As already mentioned above, every single person in a company has a role to play in satisfying the customer.
Zappos have an integration program for all new hires – including the EVPs – that incorporates time at their call centre answering customer queries. What a great way to show a new person what the company is really about.
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Why not start a similar introduction programme in your own company and organise regular customer connection sessions? We can show you HOW.
#7. “The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new lands but in seeing with new eyes.” Marcel Proust (>>Click to Tweet<<)
Today’s customers are very demanding which has prompted many companies to increase their innovation and new product launches. However, it has been shown that renovation is as important as innovation in keeping customers satisfied (find links to relevant articles HERE).
Instead of forcing your marketing and R&D to meet certain percentage targets of new launches, most of which will be destined to failure according to latest statistics, why not review your current offers with new eyes?
If you truly understand your customers, you will quickly find small changes that can make a significant impact on customer satisfaction and loyalty, when you take their perspective. And as an added bonus, if it solves a frustration of theirs, it might even bring you increased profits, since the perceived value will be higher than the cost.
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Download the free "Secrets of Innovation" eBook by completing the form on the right-hand side of this page.
#8. “A brand for a company is like a reputation for a person. You earn reputation by trying to do hard things well.” Jeff Bezos (>>Click to Tweet<<)
In the past, most companies were more concerned with the reputation of their brands than they were with that of their company, other than with investors. As consumers become interested in knowing and adhering to the policies of the companies behind the brands they buy, it is vital to manage your image from both perspectives.
In addition, if your company is the brand as is the case of Coca-Cola or Red Bull, then this is vital to follow very closely. The same applies for any organisation that is considering adding their company name more prominently to their packaging.
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Review whether there are differences between your company and brand images and whether they are complementary. And book a 1-Day Catalyst Training Session to ensure you are measuring the right metrics to optimise your images.
#9. “The journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step.” Chinese Proverb (>>Click to Tweet<<)
Today’s customers often have more complex paths to purchase in many categories than they did in the past, so thinking of the simple awareness to loyalty funnel becomes less relevant.
In order to understand the purchasing of your brand, think information integration, as customers are becoming as savvy about products as they are about themselves. They seek out information based on the size of their budget and take the time needed to make what they consider to be an informed decision.
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Check whether you are in every relevant touchpoint with appropriate information for them. Learn more about optimising your communications HERE.
#10. “However beautiful the strategy, you should occasionally look at the results.” Winston Churchill (>>Click to Tweet<<)
If your world has changed then so should the metrics you use to manage the business. Annual reviews of your KPIs should be made, if not even more frequently.
Also, review last year’s business results in comparison to the metrics you have been following. Were you correctly assessing the environment, the market and customer behaviour? If not, then it's probably time to update your KPIs.
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Review and refine your KPIs. Find out more in Chapters 37-38 of "Winning Customer Centricity."
#11. “The fear of being wrong is the prime inhibitor of the creative process.” Jean Bryant
Do you embrace entrepreneurship in your organisation? What happens when someone fails whilst trying something new? The more accepting you are of relevant trial and error exercises, the more likely it will be that your employees will share their more creative ideas.
If failure is punished, then they will be reluctant to try or even propose new things and your business will stagnate. This is a great time to review your ways of compensating creativeness as well as how you share learnings from failures.
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Download the FREE "Secrets to Actionable Insights" below.
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#12. “Where is the wisdom we have lost in knowledge? Where is the knowledge we have lost in information.” T S Eliot
Do you ever take decisions based on information or knowledge? If so then perhaps you should reconsider your insight development process.
While information and knowledge are essential to a deeper understanding of your customers, it is only when you have integrated everything you know and understand about them, that you can begin to develop insights that will positively impact your customers’ behaviour.
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Sign up for a 1-Day Catalyst Training Session on "Insights to Action" or "Insights to Impact." More information HERE.
#13. “If you can’t sum up the story in a sentence, you don’t know what you’re talking about.” Garr Reynolds
Taking the decision to share information and understanding in a new way through storytelling, will have a profound impact on the way your employees think and remember the essential understandings of your customers.
Before every presentation ask yourself what is the one sentence that sums up everything you want to share.
If you can't come up with one, then perhaps you don't know what you're talking about, or perhaps you just need more time to practice.
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Read Chapters 45-47 in "Winning Customer Centricity."
So there you have thirteen marketing quotes that will excite and inspire most people. And because I promised you a bonus if you read to the end, here is one more which aptly sums up all the others.
It is the one message out of all these marketing quotes from Charles Darwin which remains vital to remember in this awesomely changing world we live in.
“It is not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent, it is those most responsive to change”
If you have your own favourite marketing quote that inspires you to change your business practices in 2017, then please share it below. We would love to hear from you and we promise we'll add it to our growing library of quotes, with appropriate credit to you. (Fame at last!)
For even more inspiring marketing quotes, why not check out our website library? it's regularly updated.
C³Centricity used images from Denyse's book "Winning Customer Centricity" in this post.