Since mid-March, we’ve been living in a deeply uncertain and uncharted terrain. Forecasts have been almost impossible as we’re tackling an enemy that is both unseen and never been seen before. Brands are challenged to find the right path forward for near-term and long-term growth.
The most solid footing for any brand in this age of uncertainty is to stay closer to its customers and remain empathetic to their changing attitudes, needs and behaviors.
We’ve been guiding our clients to focus on identifying the ideal intersection between what customers and prospects need, and what their brand can deliver in a differentiated and compelling manner. Any critical gaps in meeting customer needs based on a brand’s existing proposition will then inform priority actions moving forward.
Here are four insights approaches a brand can use determine whether gaps exist, and how to prioritize its next steps:
1. Evaluate need importance and frequency.
Do the current needs of your customers have passing or long-term importance? Are these needs a one-time event or ongoing? Having a thorough understanding of shifting customer attitudes and behaviors will make clear the necessary shifts to your brand’s current engagement and servicing model.
2. Refresh your driver analysis.
A robust contextual analysis of the current marketplace can determine specific brand levers that will inform consideration, continued usage, and relationship deepening.
3. Competitive landscape assessment.
Measuring the impact of your brand’s actions on affinity and business outcomes relative to all key competitors can reveal both opportunities and gaps in connecting with customers.
4. New concept ideation and optimization.
Now may be the time to develop new products and serves to address near-term customer needs. Agile innovation development can ensure your brand is bringing the right new products to market with deep customer insights, but in an accelerated manner.
The most solid footing for any brand in this age of uncertainty is to stay closer to its customers and remain empathetic to their changing attitudes, needs and behaviors.”
Now more than ever, your brand’s North Star should be staying customer-centric to make sure all your actions take are forward-looking, empathetic, and need-based for the current and near-term environment.