Does Customer Relationship Management Involve Looking Inside Their Brain?

by | Nov 20, 2010

Customer Relationship Management – FastCompany recently published an article on the use of Neuromarketing in the recent mid-term elections.  The article points to Neuromarketing as a potent force in the GOP’s success this November.

As it happens, I was privileged to attend a talk by Patrick Renvoise, author of “Neuromarketing, Understanding the Buy Buttons in Your Customer’s Brain” just yesterday.   It was one of the most eye opening presentations I’ve seen in years!

We’ve all heard about Pain.  Sales trainers have been teaching us to ask open ended questions of customers in order to uncover their Pain for years.  In fact, I teach users of our customer relationship management system to create fields with drop downs for sales people to quickly enter the answers to these Pain questions so they’ll be easily accessible and can be used to segment your market.

Patrick’s presentation on Neuromarketing highlighted a few things that are news to me or at least provide a deeper Customer Relationship Managementunderstanding of the purchase decision process –

•Customers usually don’t really know their Pain

•For this reason, when asked, they will often provide misleading answers, unintentionally

Most decisions, even about complex business solutions, are made based on instincts that are millions of years old like fear, hunger, etc.

Identifying the “buy button” in your customer’s brain is about connecting with those very primitive instincts.  I’m not a scientist and was impressed with how thoroughly Patrick has boiled this complex theory down to a relatively simple process that the average business person can follow.

As with all things marketing, the hard part is deciding which buy button you’re going to try and press for your customers.
In complex B2B selling situations, a solution may be able to press more than one buy button and each influencer in the decision may respond to those messages differently.  So what is a sales person to do?

Can your online CRM help?  I think it might!

What if messages sent via email to your customers were tailored based on what we know about them?  What if the sales person was provided with scripts of questions to ask or even specific ways to describe the solution designed to press the buttons of the person they’re talking with?

Automating these things is not too difficult given enough information from which to choose the button to focus on.  In fact, the sales person could be armed with a key question to start the conversation with that tells them which button their aiming for.
I think the difficulty is that leveraging this type of capability requires that the business has gone through the process of identifying these buy buttons and crafting messages, presentations, etc. to press them.  Most haven’t.

Can that process be automated?  Perhaps…