Your customer base is your most valuable resource, and we’re not just talking financially. In our last post we talked about listening to your customers’ feedback as a way to build a relationship, but that using that feedback as market research can also be incredibly valuable to your print business.Conduct surveys of current customersHow do you determine what your customers need? The easiest way is to ask them. Using your current customer base for market research can give you the step up you need to stand out in the print industry. Conducting regular customer satisfaction surveys annually or biannually is a great way to stay in touch with your base. You can also send out automatic post-purchase surveys to ask customers about their buying experience. Use free online survey tools in conjunction with any email marketing tool to get feedback. We recommend six free tools in our eBook.Review customer purchasing behavior for cross-selling opportunitiesYou know who your customers are and what they normally buy. Are they ordering the same job again and again? By reviewing their purchasing behavior, patterns will emerge, and that will offer you the opportunity to cross-sell other products and services that will complement their current purchases. The simplest way to do this is through a customer database or CRM—customer relationship management platform—where you can record and check customer data. There are numerous CRMs available, each with different features, but we recommend using a CRM that has segmentation capabilities, so that you can divide your customer base into the most relevant categories for sales analysis and/or marketing research.Customer success stories also make great marketing materialsUse your happy customers’ experiences with your products and services to present new ideas to others. These may come in the form of:Written and published testimonialsCase studies offered through your websiteOnline reviewsShout-outs on social mediaVideos of happy customersThe point is, customer testimonials or reviews are incredibly effective when it comes to marketing your business. Today, 88 percent of consumers say they trust an online review just as much as a personal recommendation, so your happy customers just may be the catalyst for bringing in new business.Learn more by downloading the eBook: click here or on the button below. In the eBook, we also cover preparing your print shop for the future, new ideas, new marketing techniques and real world examples.