An excellent Infographic (see below) put together by Help Scout (www.helpscout.net),  summarizes the central concepts behind customer-centric selling and how it applies not only to direct B2B selling but to e-commerce and mobile applications sales as well.  In particular, personalization, while the example in this infographic is weak (bringing a second set of mints to a dining customer) the point is critical.  A better example would have been saying that if your waiter addresses you by name would have a significantly bigger impact.  Or, putting the name of the customer in chocolate sauce on their dessert.  The importance of remembering and using a customer’s name is brought out in point three.  In selling direct or online anytime you customize and personalize a presentation or information will make it much more valuable and memorable.  Further, it differentiates you and your company from the competition.

Another area of particular importance, in my opinion, is customer communication and interaction as covered in points 7 and 8.   Useful in both direct B2B or mobile applications is the notion that I regularly interact with my customers and use my customer base to drive features and content.  Customers know what they want and are happy to let you know it.  Inversely, they become very unhappy and lose interest when they feel ignored.  This is not to say that a company should only add features and improvements dictated by their customers.  Customers are generally not aware of new technology or methods that can fundamentally improve their customer experience.  The best companies balance improvements that are driven by new technology and internal directions with features asked for by the customer.

More applicable to mobile/e-commerce is interaction and communication that enables and promotes customers to build or add content themselves.  Not only does this make for a happier user/customer base but has the benefit of your customers adding value and content making the brand and customer experience have more value with little to no company investment.  All the most successful online applications embrace this “social” customer experience.

The rest of the points are right-on as well and worth reviewing and internalizing for anyone selling.

– Randy Hujar

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