Bruce Springsteen is an American singer-songwriter known for connecting with sold-out audiences for more than thirty years. One may conclude this connection is the result of poetic lyrics, high-energy performances and smashing good looks. Those can’t hurt. However, you may be surprised to know his philosophy on building and sustaining those audiences throughout the years:
“Getting an audience is hard. Sustaining an audience is hard. It demands a consistency of thought, of purpose, and of action over a long period of time.”
As marketers we understand the first two statements all too well. Getting a customer is hard! Retaining a customer is hard!
What lessons can we glean from The Boss and his sustained success? Consistency is key. This is by no means an earth-shatteringly new concept. He goes on to detail the types of consistency – thought, purpose and action – all over a period of time. How might we relate that to building and sustaining our audiences, or customers?
– Consistency of Thought – How well do we plan for the customer experience? Do we understand key customer segments and message accordingly? Do we respect the privacy and preferences of our customers? Do we plan across the company to expand the relationship across the brand?
– Consistency of Purpose – Now that we have a plan, how well is our content developed to be in sync with our plan? Is it engaging (think poetic lyrics and high-energy performance)? Is it consistent across products, channels and customer lifecycle?
– Consistency of Action – The best of planning and most brilliant content is only as good as the action. How well are our customers recognized and cohesively messaged to across channels? Does our consistency hold up for both anonymous and known interactions?
– Consistency Over Time – Does our plan, content and action remain consistent while also evolving with time? Are we prepared to consistently measure and refine? Do we know what data matters most?
How do you measure up to The Boss? If you feel anything less than Born to Run, you may want to consider further exploring how you stack up from a marketing maturity perspective. Managing the consumer experience is one of the top capability gaps identified for clients in Acxiom’s Marketing Maturity Model assessment. This patent-pending assessment provides unique insights for clients’ use in defining strategies, roadmaps and achieving measured capability improvements against stated business objectives, targets and key performance indicators. Soon, we will launch a tool in the Perspectives section of our website for users to have a snapshot of their marketing capabilities compared to industry leaders. Stay tuned!