Customer acquisition is getting more difficult and more expensive by the day, while budgets are getting cut left and right – that’s not news to anybody. To quote our CEO Steve Warren in an interview with MarTech Series: “We can predict with a degree of certainty that 2021 will continue to see an overriding focus on marketing efficiency due to incredibly tight budgets.” So, the key is to optimize spending and focus all marketing on activities that actually work.
All industries need to keep a close eye on their customer experience (CX) to differentiate themselves from the competition. Optimized customer experiences are almost guaranteed to improve your business’ growth rate and revenue and provide the competitive edge you need to stand out. Automation, ideally paired with AI, is the holy grail to keeping up with the ever-evolving digital markets. But to implement proper automation, you need to start by streamlining your customer data. This means: no more data silos, having all team members work from a unified database, and activating said data for marketing campaigns.
Earlier this year, Mapp commissioned Forrester Consulting to conduct a study among 200+ industry experts worldwide to unearth how and if companies are using insights to improve their customer experience. The outcome came as a surprise to all of us: Although 89% rated a holistic customer experience as either important or very important, more than half lack proper customer insights (starting with the fact that 53% of companies say are unable to identify their website visitors). Turns out, there is still a vast gap between the goal most can agree on and the reality of insight-driven marketing.
Another finding that stood out in the study was that tools trump talent when it comes to improving the customer experience. Hiring new staff seems to be a lower priority (only named a high priority by 25%) compared to gathering and activating data. Instead, 54% of respondents agree that the biggest challenge in improving customer experiences is the lack of insights.
As the impact of third-party data is slowly moving to the background, first-party data is the central factor to achieving a unified customer view. First-party data is fully owned by the business that gathers it, which means it’s ready to be used to create engaging and relevant customer experiences that are guided by customer insights.
Insight-led customer experiences rely on data, tools, and processes by which to unearth actionable insights from all the available information. Today’s technologies allow you to obtain a 360° view of your customers, including their demographics, buying preferences, digital habits and more. Only when a business truly knows their customers is it able to cater to their needs and improve the CX strategy accordingly. With insights at the core of this approach, surrounded by the data they stem from, you can create sustainable and compatible customer experiences.
Thinking in conventional campaign structure needs to be replaced with insight-led decision making. In other words, we are reversing the traditional marketing process of “data >> execution >> analytics” and putting insights at the center: “data >> insights >> engagement”. The modern marketer is looking to go beyond cross-channel marketing + analytics, but instead use customer insights as a means to drive and improve the customer experience on the own website and other marketing channels. And this is what insight-led customer experiences are!
Insight-led customer experiences can be:
Precise remarketing after cart abandonment – when clicking on the ad, the cart is still filled.
Visualizing your customer journey to easily identify the quickest road to conversion.
Offering smart coupon popups to the customers that you have identified as reacting positively to coupons.
Recommending editorial content (behind paywall) that match the visitors’ interests.
Sending automatically triggered direct mail to your customer’s home that is highly personalized and motivates second (and third) purchases.
Marketing based on averages creates average results. Once you have unified your data from all incoming sources, you need to make sure your analytics technology can map and clarify it for you. Insight-led customer experiences acknowledge the importance of marketing intelligence and insights for data that is unique to your company and your offerings – not based on the average in your industry. Allow an advanced analytics solution to make sense of your first-party data and discover trends and patterns that otherwise would have remained hidden under the surface.
With these insights at hand, it is time to activate your data in all marketing channels to improve your customer experience strategy. But you don’t have to do all this by yourself! You can rely on a digital marketing platform to help you to detect and automate CX improvements. Only with a platform that offers customer-centric technology can this be achieved. On top of insights, AI predictions and smart recommendations are crucial today if you want business growth. It is cost-effective and creates seamless customer experiences.
We believe that only those brands that can engage their customers regularly in a targeted manner, guided by reliable insights, are the ones that will be successful in the future. Improving the customer experience all starts with knowing who your customers are. Mapp Cloud is a customer experience platform that provides reliable and actionable insights, paired with forecasting and predictions on customer lifetime value, churn probabilities, and conversion rates.
Here are a few tips on how you can benefit from turning insights into action to improve the customer experience:
Say hello to real-time marketing. If contacts are immediately recognized when visiting any of your websites or apps, your marketing software can activate one-to-one personalization by recommending matching articles, remind them of filled shopping baskets, or offering tailored discounts – on the spot.
Remind yourself that every contact is valuable. If they have made a purchase once before, even a long period of inactivity doesn’t mean you won’t be able to reactivate them with a clever and well-automated campaign flow.
Stay flexible! Review your CX strategy often and take the knowledge for your data into consideration, but also feedback from surveys or findings from other sources. Constant improvement leads to stable success.
If you would like to find out more about how Mapp can help you improve your customer experience through insights, request a personalized demo today!