Are you also quick to proclaim, “We’re a consumer centric brand?” OLIVER Strategist, Craig Harries, discusses putting consumers first.
“People define your brand based on how you inspire them”
Geoffrey Colon, Communications Designer at Microsoft
Talk is cheap, and the easiest thing for a CMO to do is proclaim, “We’re a consumer centric brand”. But there’s a tension between meeting the needs of the business, and those of the consumer, because when it comes down to the nitty-gritty the business, shareholders, and jobs come first.
It’s true that brands that stand for something people identify with are more appealing, but trying to invent a ‘why’ when there has never been one should ring alarm bells. It’s merely an exercise in semantics that will not deliver any meaningful change in the brand’s relationship with consumers. In fact it could do the opposite. For example the recent emissions scandal has damaged the whole motor industry and led to an evaporation of trust in one of the most respected brands in the industry.
Marketing is littered with brands purporting to be consumer centric, yet blatantly doing the opposite.
Anybody who has bought car insurance knows their first year renewal premium will rise without them being informed. That’s not consumer centric, and consumers know it. If insurers spent more time designing a transparent product, then maybe consumers will feel they’re on their side.
As Geoffrey Colon stated in a recent post:
“The brands that will be victorious in this new world will view marketing as a psychological meets behavioural meets creative meets analytical meets technical meets flexible field in the constantly shifting here and now.”
Retraining an entire organisation to become agile and adaptive is a huge task for most businesses. Yet genuinely putting the consumer at the centre to design bespoke and highly rewarding products and experiences is no longer a nice to have; it’s the difference between success and failure.