Marketing in a Challenging Economy
#2 Heavy Users

by James on October 6, 2008

This series of 4 posts talks about what a business can do, especially a SOHO business, in a challenging economy. The premise is, success with customer relationship marketing is the key. Marketing in a Challenging Economy – #1 Best Customers recommends finding best customers and focusing on delivering the best customer experience. The post also points out that your best customers are likely to be heavy category users.

Heavy Category Users

Heavy users are market movers. They generate disproportionate activity in the category: more sales revenue and more profit.  They need what the category offers. In fact, they need a lot of what the category offers and you probably don’t satisfy all their requirements.

They are experts, they know a lot about the category. They understand the pros and cons of what you offer, and what your competitors offer. This is important so I will repeat myself, heavy users are experts, they are not the mass market.

They have long memories. They remember who was good to them and who wasn’t. And, they know they are important, important to you and your competitors. They expect to be treated differently.

Understand who they are. Dig into their issues. Explore their interests. Understand why they need what the market offers. Understand what satisfies them and what doesn’t. For those customers who don’t use you as much as your competitors, understand why this is how they satisfy their requirements. What are their barriers? Use what you learn to focus marketing efforts and increase your share of their requirements.

Hip Shots

  • Put programs in place to ensure your best customers stay loyal. They are significant contributors to your business and they know it; reinforce their decision to buy and show them how much you appreciate them.`
  • Direct acquisition marketing at frequent purchasers. Don’t worry about light and moderate shoppers. Marketing won’t change their need for what the market offers so don’t waste your money.
  • Design messaging to attract heavy users. Work to overcome the barriers they have to your product. Be specific about benefits that are important to them. They are experts; warm and fuzzy won’t work with them.

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