Knowing your customer is critical to gaining influence and perspective. This helps you create value the market cannot do because of the access you have in your client relationship.
This is an important thought to consider. You have access your competitor wants and very few get. In conversations with sales leaders and key account managers today they intellectually understand the importance of knowing their customer and doing the proactive research. Many when pushed for a clear reason for what they research and why. The majority struggle for an answer.