San Diego/London, April 14, 2021 – Mapp, the international provider of insight-led customer engagement, today released the results of a study on current customer experience strategies. The findings reveal that, while 89% of respondents think a CX strategy is important or very important to business success, less than half (47%) review and evaluate their CX strategy annually or even less frequently. Nearly the same amount (88%) agree that it is important to understand changing customer needs using customer analytics to improve CX. Yet only half (55%) of CX and marketing decision-makers plan to implement customer analytics in 2021.
Customer experience is paramount – but implementation is still lacking
Those companies that do plan to implement customer analytics tools expect to use it to facilitate improved customer insight (75%), gain a better understanding of customer intent (55%) and improve their ability to update their CX strategy (55%) in an agile manner. A full 80% of marketers expect enhanced personalization.
Despite the clear benefits, companies face major hurdles when it comes to updating their CX strategy. Respondents cite the difficulty of linking business outcomes to real customer needs (83%), insufficient technology platforms (77%), and a lack of vision and alignment among leaders, teams, and employees (72%).
Lack of insights as the biggest challenge to improved CX
Although customer experience (CX) and customer insights are not new to the marketing industry, many marketers still face the challenge of gaining truly relevant customer insights to keep pace with end-user expectations.
Over half (53%) of marketers say they are unable to identify customers on their website, even though this is the foundation for gaining insights and driving CX. Following Google’s announcement that it will no longer support third-party cookies, first-party data will play an even more important role, as valid data collection and the identification of the right insights are more important than ever. For 54% of respondents, the lack of customer insights is by far the biggest challenge when it comes to enabling better brand experiences. 57% of marketers surveyed consider lack of skilled talent being their primary challenge in delivering better CX.
At the same time, however, only a quarter attribute their success in recent years to talent improvement. This proves that while hiring and developing qualified staff is important, using the right tools for insight-driven marketing offers the greatest economic success. 65% of respondents expect that new technology leads to improved customer insights.
More know-how and sales through customer insights
To better understand their customers’ needs, companies are already investing in their MarTech stacks. For improved customer understanding, the marketers surveyed cite customer analytics (56%), customer data management (52%) and marketing automation (49%) as top investments in the last two years.
In addition, 51% of decision-makers have also already achieved greater performance using customer insights. Companies that have implemented AI or ML tools also report improved ability to update their strategy (62%), greater understanding of customer intent (58%) and improved customer insights (57%).
Ricardas Montvila, VP Global Strategy at Mapp comments, “Our study shows that targeted improvement of the customer experience leads to significantly faster growth and more revenue and should, therefore, be a top priority for every marketer. Given the focus on online business models, marketing must be aligned even more efficiently to achieve this. After all, understanding customers is the basis for brand experiences that work, and investing in customer analytics is a prerequisite for a marketing ecosystem that enables this understanding. Technology helps to identify actionable insights and user segments for highly personalized customer experiences and to place brand messages across channels.”
About the study
The commissioned study was conducted by Forrester Consulting on behalf of Mapp in December 2020 with 203 marketing decision-makers from multi-channel retail, eCommerce, CPG/D2C and financial services in the US, Canada, and Europe.
Marketers and data specialists should be able to focus on what will make a difference for their business, instead of spending all their time taming the technology behind it. With the insight-led customer engagement platform Mapp Cloud, they can focus on what really counts – and the exciting insights that come with it. Thanks to customer intelligence and marketing analytics, companies can easily and effectively gain data-driven customer insights across all channels in order to trigger highly personalized marketing activities. Customers benefit from AI-supported forecasting models that enable targeted and self-optimizing cross-channel campaigns. Automated messages are sent via the most suitable marketing channel, at the right time, with the optimal contact frequency. Thanks to advanced one-to-one personalization, the highest levels of engagement and long-term customer loyalty are achieved.
Mapp has global offices in seven countries. Mapp’s digital marketing platform helps more than 3,000 companies break away from the pack by uncovering missed opportunities, including Argos, Ella’s Kitchen, Expert, Freesat, Lloyds Banking Group, MyToys, Pepsico, Quint and The Entertainer.