‘Tis The Season (To Know Thy Customer)

Sing it with me… It’s the most wonderful time of the year!

Ah, the smooth crooning of Andy Williams.  Nothing puts me in the holiday mindset quite like music.  And Black Friday.  Personally I cower from the teeming throngs of shoppers, but I am fascinated by the whole phenomenon.  If you’re a retailer, you’re likely well acquainted with the aforementioned throngs.  I realize things can get pretty crazy with crowd dynamics, and I stumbled across some interesting articles this weekend that I thought you might be interested in.

A newspaper carried an article about the season’s hottest tech gifts.  You likely have a similar article in your local paper, so the existence of the article itself isn’t remarkable.

In Rolling Stone magazine, there was a small blurb about a sustained decline in digital album sales.

Later in Rolling Stone, I read a multi-page transcription of an interview in which three political analysts discussed the recent U.S. mid-term elections where a significant shift in power between political parties has happened.

At some point in each of these three pieces, an attempt was made to “know” a certain type of person.  In the paper, the writer was trying to “know” a gift receiver.  Rolling Stone sought to understand people who bought (or didn’t buy) digital music.  One of the political analysts was pretty certain he had a solid understanding of a voting demographic.

The key to these mysteries is the same in all cases.  Do you know your target audience?  It doesn’t matter what realm you talk about.  Music, retail, politics (blogging, for that matter)… it all comes down to the fact that you MUST have an accurate and actual familiarity with your customer base in order to provide great service.

In a season where the crowd typically takes center stage, please remember that crowds are made up of individuals.  Knowing those individuals is the first step to serving them.

Murph Krajewski
Third Silhouette From The Left

PS: if you’re reading this, and you’re Santa Claus, here are some things I wouldn’t mind getting for Christmas.

  • World peace
  • Square meals and clean water for everyone
  • Freedom for slaves
  • …and maybe a new Mac Pro.
Murph Krajewski

Murph Krajewski

I joined the Interactive Intelligence family in 2000 as an IT guy. Since then I’ve spent years demonstrating and showcasing our software and services to the masses both in person and via video through my current role as Video Production Manager. I’m most passionate about helping companies improve their customers’ experiences, and love thinking up new ways to make that happen. I’m a true jack-of-all-trades, and I will likely never stop trying to figure out a way to move to London, England.