I went back and looked at the major themes I've focused on over the past fifteen years writing this blog:
- 2006 - 2009 = Understanding how customers and channels interact.
- 2010 - 2013 = Changing your catalog/email contact strategy to optimize your business.
- 2014 - 2017 = Merchandise Forensics.
- 2018 - 2019 = Fixing a struggling business.
- 2020 = COVID.
- 2021 = Customer Development.
We can see how, heading into 2022, Customer Development is going to be really important.
Maybe you are a retail brand trying to rebuild. The customers currently using your store are different (go look at the data) today than they were in September 2019.
Maybe you are an e-commerce brand trying to battle against Amazon. Maybe you sell on Amazon and notice that Amazon buyers never purchase from you directly. You need to Develop Amazon customers differently than your own customers (i.e. it's best not to just ignore Amazon buyers and it is best to not treat Amazon buyers like your own customers).
Maybe you are a catalog brand who has been neutered by the paper / printing industry supported by a consultancy pushing a failed agenda. Maybe you've been told you MUST mail 24 catalogs a year ... nearly every other week ... to the point where you recruited a 66 year old customer who won't shop unless you mail a catalog ... only to now be told by the industry that there isn't paper available for you this November. Good luck!! For you, Customer Development just became you biggest challenge. You'll need to contact me immediately, because we have a lot of work ahead of us (click here).
Business is never going to be the same ... 2019 may as well have been 30 years ago instead of two years ago. We're moving in new directions now, and we need to focus on Customer Development if we're going to succeed.
If you disagree with me, let me know, I welcome your feedback.