eCommerce PunchOut is a little-understood (and rarely supported) function for most B2B eCommerce...
Delight and The Human Element
I saw a great quote on LinkedIn the other day and immediately went out to buy the book it was referencing (I’m currently working my way through it; I’ll let you know what I think once I finish it). The quote by itself is incredibly powerful though, and I think sums up a lot of what CSP strives to achieve.
Human to Human. Which brings me to a question you’ve probably been asked a thousand times before:
Who are your customers?
Before you answer, I’d like you to consider the question not within a data context, but within an individual context. I think that a lot of the time we forget businesses are made up of people. Human beings with passions and drives that ultimately shape their decisions (including buying decisions).
While I’m not suggesting that you throw everything out the window and start talking 1 on 1 with every customer (talk about a non-scalable business!), I do think it’s necessary to make sure you remember you’re dealing with other human beings. More importantly, it’s necessary that THEY know YOU know they’re a person, not just a potential transaction in a data segment.
You’ve probably heard me talk about personalisation before. I bang on about it a lot – #sorrynotsorry. In many ways personalisation IS about data. You can segment people based on products they’ve bought, what they like on social media, what they look at but don’t buy... And all of this is necessary in building a good business strategy, so you should definitely keep on keeping on with it.
My point (and I promise I’m getting to it), is not that we should stop doing this, but that we should change the conversation after we’ve done it. Once you’ve worked out the who, you have to work out the how. How do you talk to your customers? How do you engage with them in a meaningful way - not just to get them to buy something they might be interested in? How do you make sure they know you haven’t forgotten The Human Element?
I believe the answer lies not in what we do, but in how we do it. One of the things I personally try to remember in everything I do at work is that one of my key drivers is to DELIGHT. Not to support, not to help, but to delight. Through educational content. Through little things like remembering a work anniversary, and big things like coming to a customer with a brand new feature that will solve a pain-point they told me about months ago.
So I challenge you to ask yourself a similar question:
How can you delight the individuals who make up your customer base?
Asking questions like these helps me understand your business better. It helps us both understand your customers, and enables me to make suggestions based on the problems you have. Not just problems you might have right now, but the ones that could crop up years from now.
What do you think? How do you delight your customers, and are there ways you could do it better?