A lot in this blog is revolving around inclusive brands and how they should attract, develop or retain diverse customers. So starting from this post, I would, in addition, like to talk about who are diverse customers? And, why do we identify them as diverse? Because, aren’t all customers alike, diverse or not?
The answer is a resounding YES! All customers are alike. A customer is "a person who buys goods or services from a shop or business".
Then why the categorization?
Let us for the sake of understanding consider that you are a brand, and your product is hair oil. Your hair oil is popular with women. You launch an advertisement of this product to gain more visibility and decide to show women with long lustrous hair and gaining the admiration of people who see those tresses flowing from one end to the other, with a background score playing: The most beautiful woman in the world…
On the drawing board, to you, this advert seems just perfect. In hindsight, your advert is heavily focused on drawing external validation, its more about how others would approve of those women who are using your hair oil than women themselves, who are using it – meaning, most women would use your hair oil because they want healthy, dense and well-groomed hair not because it will help them attract unwanted admiration. How are you setting the standard for what’s most beautiful? Have you literally scanned every woman’s hair on this planet to arrive at some benchmark?
Even if this isn’t believable to you, consider you want to launch this hair oil in the Middle East. Many women in the region wear a hijab/ abaya /headscarf. They cover their head and they don’t particularly appreciate flaunting their tresses as openly as women in many other parts of the world. Hijab is their symbol of modesty.
Do you believe that those women would still relate to your product’s messaging or does your product adapts to the new cultural medium?
Here is where I answer this question: Then why the categorization? It’s really not about Categorization, the challenge lies in Generalization.
A customer’s beliefs powers their perception. Their perception powers buying behavior. Perceptions vary from customer to customer. Different customers perceive different things about the same product. Empowered brands empower their customer by not generalizing, by valuing differences, and hence they attract diverse customers, they innovate, they grow, they expand, and they retain!
At Diverse Customer, we go beyond the demographics of categorization and generalization. We give a voice to inclusive brands and an experience to diverse customers in formats as varied as them, visual, auditory and kinesthetic.
Learning in Series 1: Different Strokes for Different Folks.
- Amit Anand
Look out for Series 2: Stop seeking a customer’s attention. Do something worth paying attention to! Rihanna, Fenty Beauty and Fur - 17th November 2017.