An active customer community provides your organization the opportunity to enrich your user data. Community profiles tend to include more detailed information than the average marketing site user profile.
These updated profiles can increase the precision of your user segmentation, targeting, and personalization initiatives. Community data falls into two primary categories, Explicitly Shared Information and Implicitly Shared Information.
- Explicitly Shared Information is the additional level of detail that a customer shares with you via their community profile. Your marketing automation tool may only capture key information such as Name, Company, and Email. Your community profile allows for a richer set of fields that users can share regarding Department, Goals, Phone #, and Areas of Interest.
- Implicit information is the additional level of detail we can garner from a user’s community-specific activity. For example:
- Have they engaged in any product discussions?
- Have they liked or rated any content?
- What groups have they joined?
- Community Click Path
- Ideas Submitted
These user activities can help marketers identify service or product gaps, product development goals, and customer needs that the user has not explicitly communicated.
In this sense your digital community is an excellent — and to date, largely untapped — resource for market research.
This is part three of a series on Community Experience as a key aspect of Customer Experience. You can also read part one on the post-acquisition customer lifecycle and part two on alignment between community and customers.