I talked about the differences between customers and consumers the other day. My long term mentor saw the post and share his input with me. As it’s Friday, I would then like to share his thoughts with everyone. He is an expert in many things and retail marketing is one of them.
“In multi- national FMCG, Pharma etc, customers are the trade like Coles, Woolis, Target etc. Consumers are the individuals making the purchase decision. And users are the individuals consuming the product. So in your examples, a Toy might be bought in Target. Target is therefore the customer. The consumer is the purchaser (Mom, Dad, Friend, Uncle etc.) and the kid is the user. While companies use other terms, it is usually always the same 3 stage marketing process. Trade Marketing is a big and real department in FMCG. It involved category management, shelf planograms , merchandising and most importantly pricing and promotional pricing implementation. Consumer Marketing is focused on brand developing and creating demand. And in the case of kids as users, driving pester power is a key strategy. “
Great insight! Thank you so much.
You all know the difference between customers and consumers. I thought I do too but it wouldn’t hurt to get into a little detail.
Customers are the people who purchase your product. Consumers are the end users who use or consume your product.
It seems intuitive but who you target marketing efforts to. Not all cases that customers and consumers are the same person. A classic example is toy products where customers are parents and consumers are children.
A little detail could make a lot of difference.
Have you ever ask yourself this very question? Why would people buy from you, not from your competitors, or from the shops next door? I find this question very useful. This is because it’s sometimes difficult to find a good answer.
In my industry, the question I often ask is ‘why would guests choose to stay at our hotel, not the hotel next door?’. We have a hotel in a place called “Gold Coast” in Australia. There are more than 1,000 hotels in this tourist city. In the city’s tourist spot, there are more than 100 similar hotels to ours. Hence, the question I ask – why?
The response I got is frustrating. We don’t have a good answer. Could it be our service? Or, could it be our room standard quality? Our beds? Kitchen? All of the above, or none of the above? As far as I can see, the hotels next door offer the exact same things that we do. That’s why all of us go to the price war. We offer discounts. We focus more on the revenue management function.
Some changes in the way we think need to happen. We have to find the right answer. Some woks are in progress. We started by giving a unique positioning to each hotel. We will separate them all with different positioning.
Wish me luck.