Boosting customer engagement by adapting quickly to changing customer needs

Customer insights - the fuel of every business

An experience like COVID-19 highlights the importance of adequate customer understanding. With customer sentiment and behavior changing rapidly, it is more critical than ever to gather customer insights on a real-time basis. Instrumental to doing so is the use of specific personas, enriched with 1st and 3rd party data, displaying needs and experiences by customer segment. Based on this data, precise customer engagement strategies can be developed and personalization tactics can be executed. 

Also, some companies might see triple digit growth during this crisis because of attracting new groups of customers due to COVID-19. Understanding their specific characteristics and needs is vital for retaining these customers throughout and after the crisis. Companies capable of fully understanding their customers’ needs are not only mitigating short-term COVID-19 risks but are also enabling themselves to properly serve post-COVID-19 needs. Post COVID-19, we might enter a new era that will change the ways we work, interact, shop, eat and live. So, let us reimagine the future now!

With customer sentiment and behavior changing rapidly, it is more critical than ever to gather customer insights on a real-time basis.

The response to COVID-19 from different industries

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Retailers are focusing on data capabilities around social media

International retailers that are largely dependent on in-store sales significantly intensify their data capabilities around social media to stay close their customers during the loss of their usual main interaction channel.

Banks are boosting goodwill

Multiple Dutch banks are boosting goodwill among customers and are ensuring the continuity of their business at the same time, by offering 3- to 6-month postponements on mortgage payment for those affected by COVID-19.

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Clothing brands are sharing personal ‘life in quarantine’ stories

A clothing brand presented their new collection comfortably worn by employees working from home and sharing their personal ‘life in quarantine’ stories.

Consumer products brands message in support of the greater good

Innovative consumer products brands put themselves in the spotlight by explicitly altering their message and tone in support of the greater good.

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Food & beverage producers team up

A variety of competing foods and alcoholic beverage producers and wholesalers teamed up to launch an initiative that allows consumers to purchase vouchers for their favorite, currently closed, neighborhood establishments.

Marketing communications agility – boost digital customer engagement

The volatility of the crisis illuminates how quickly circumstances can change. Requiring companies to quickly change messaging to customers and employees for reassurance and the avoidance of any reputational damage. Wiring internal and external operations for agility across media, social, PR and communications is a critical asset moving forward. In a time where many activities have come to a hard stop, digitally engaging with your customers is the one thing you CAN do.

A purpose-driven, true human-to-human communications approach is what is needed to enrich the relationship with customers. So, ensure an empathic and personal tone of voice, boost relevant content and increase the number of positive digital interactions with your customers. And remember, showing vulnerability and integrity might boost company trust. Authentic, purpose-driven brands are a big step ahead in these uncertain times.

5 tips to stay engaged with your customer during COVID-19

Scan customer sentiment constantly

Constantly scan customer sentiment by using intelligent social media tracking and adjust your communications approach accordingly.

Stick to your purpose

During times of crises, purpose-driven brands often come out on top. Remind your customers of your purpose and which role you play in their life and anticipate their needs. Especially during these challenging times.

Make it up close and personal

Make your brand feel up close and personal by featuring personal stories from customers and/or employees in your communication.

Identify relevant pre and post COVID-19 customer segments

During times of crises, purpose-driven brands often come out on top. Remind your customers of your purpose and which role you play in their life and anticipate their needs. Especially during these challenging times.

Show some vulnerability

As you might be struggling during these times, show your customers how and why you are experiencing difficulties in a sincere way. Now is the time to truly engage with your customers. And as people can only truly bond when they can be vulnerable, this also applies to companies.

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Need more inspiration?

Receive a business tip on how to deal with COVID-19 every working day at 12:00

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COVID-19 forces businesses to rethink the way they execute innovation and value creation

EY VODW’s methodologies and tools are well suited for remote, virtual projects, while maintaining our customer centric and agile approach.

We help you to explore new areas of opportunity, design and validate possible solutions and launch your product into the market place. Experience remote customer journey mapping, Design studios, customer validations, service blue print design or an entire virtual Design sprint.

Request demo

Plan a 30 minute virtual coffee to discuss your key COVID-19 priorities free of charge.

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Please contact us to discuss your top COVID-19 response priorities

Looking for intelligent social media insights to fuel your COVID-19 initiatives, enrich your customer segments with Covid-19 related data or define a hands-on engagement strategy for your new app downloads?  1 expert team, 4 weeks, fixed price.

Marcel-van-Brenk-zwart-1
Marcel van Brenk
Partner
Steven Kraal_dark_thumbnail
Steven Kraal
Sr. Manager data science
Sacha-Ghurahoo-zwart
Sacha Ghurahoo
Sr. Manager Customer Experience
Michael Klazema_dark_thumbnail
Michael Klazema
Sr. Manager Marketing Technology

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