Just Ask Your Customers Breakfast: Resources

1st Dec 2017

Our November breakfast on marketers talking to their customers was wide-ranging and packed with references to useful resources. We have listed some of them here in an attempt to share the wisdom.

Our in-house behavioural economist, Aimee Wilde discussed how customers are increasingly becoming ‘prosumers’ – i.e they’re as much a part of developing products as consuming them. This phrase was coined by Jaideep Prabhu and Vai Radjou in their multi-award-winning book ‘Frugal Innovation’ (the CMI Management Book of the Year 2016 and the CMI Innovation and Entrepreneurship Book of the Year 2016).

Matt Phillips asked whether the way we perceive, approach and engage customers should still be led by demographic markers such as age, location, sex etc. or whether it’s more practical to look at behavioural data, which raised this famous David Ogilvy quote on customer behaviour:

People don’t think what they feel, don’t say what they think and don’t do what they say

Another often-quoted line on the same topic is often attributed to Henry Ford (although there is no evidence he ever said it):

If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses.

Amigo is designed with behavioural insights in mind. Whilst most marketers voice an interest in SaaS platforms, our recent article illustrates why managed technology can be far more empowering for marketers. We also develop campaigns to help marketers outsource marketing to their customers.

Matt Phillips shared a similar example from the PR industry, discussing how consumers (in this case, marketing and advertising folk) often need to have their assumptions challenged. He referenced Trinity Mirror Solutions 2015 campaign, ‘time to fight back against printism’ which brought to light the hidden commercial benefits that still emerge from print advertising.

It was also raised by Frederic Kalinke that marketing leaders should remember the importance of shaping employee behaviour, as well as consumer behaviour, in order to keep customers happy. Easyjet recently learnt that customers wanted their experiences with the airline provider to be fully supported with staff at every part of their travel journey, but that this was being undermined by high absenteeism among employees. In response, Easyjet’s CEO, Dame Carolyn McCall, developed an employee app that made it easier to swap shifts. This reduced no-shows and increased customer satisfaction.

Tim Ryan offered a warning on the increasing focus of short-term digital marketing techniques, and how an obsession with activation techniques can discourage marketers from engaging with what customers actually want. He noted that it’s critical for marketers not to equate digital marketing’s ‘immediate measurables’ with ‘immediate results’. His comments echo those of Pattison, CEO of Maxus Global, at the PPA Festival earlier this year.

Behavioural economics featured heavily throughout the breakfast, especially in relation to how marketers should balance the rational requests or feedback they receive from customers with the far more irrational behaviour that they often exhibit. A great upcoming event on this subject is How To Academy: Irrational Behaviour and Money with Dan Ariely.

Jasper Martens gave the example that in qualitative research and direct conversations with PensionBee customers, they cite the cheapest pension aggregator option as their first choice, but that actual consumer data consistently shows their more expensive, ‘tailored’ plan as being more successful/purchased more.

Look out for

Figaro Digital Quarterly Magazine: Issue 31: Our MD, Frederic Kalinke, offers his take on the relationship between customer and artificial intelligence. This will be going to press in December. Please email [email protected] if you’d like a copy!

Further reading

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