Customer orientation is a major success factor for business

The relationship between a company and its customers is an important factor in its success. A product or service finds a satisfied customer when it is developed with the customer in mind.
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The key element of customer orientation is to identify the customers who use the company's services or products. Once the customer base has been identified, segmentation can be used to break it down into smaller segments, making it easier to understand the company's target groups and their needs. This information will also help the company to understand which communication channels should be used to reach customers. Within different target groups, customers are often linked by age, gender, lifestyle, interests and other distinguishing characteristics.

It is also important for a company to identify its values and use them to communicate in a targeted way to the desired target groups. It is also important to identify values in order to present a clear, responsible and reliable picture of the company's operations.

Communicating through multiple channels

Many companies nowadays seek to engage in a continuous dialogue with their customers through different channels. It is therefore possible for a company to choose different communication channels depending on the specific target group. Which social media channel is the customer using? Which media do they use? Customers can also be reached through customer meetings, marketing events, various electronic channels and customer satisfaction surveys.

Customer orientation can be managed through various CRM programmes for customer relationship management. These programmes are designed to identify and select strategically important customers, set targets and develop operational strategies to develop customer relationships. CRM can also be used to implement planned actions and further develop activities on the basis of the results and feedback received.

Where to get support for business development?

Customer focus is a key success factor, especially for micro-enterprises. Small businesses usually do not have the financial resources to acquire other business support resources such as research and development or a larger number of expensive top employees.

However, a good, reliable and free development opportunity for small businesses is to participate in research projects such as those of the Kerttu Saalasti Institute, which micro-entrepreneurs can also join at no cost. To see the range of projects, visit the University of Oulu's website at:

Sari Liikala, M.Sc., Project Researcher, University of Oulu Kerttu Saalasti Institute, HYBRIDI - Strengthening microentrepreneurs' corporate responsibility through peer-to-peer networking project

Photo: Pexels, Anastasia Shuraeva