World of marketing is drifting away from, “People who bought this, also bought that.” Now marketers are in a position to manipulate data in such a way that is both meaningful to customers and profitable for companies. Here we delve into the heartbeat of modern marketing; Data activation and personalization.
Let us look into the experience of a representative customer, say Jenny. She is a married and wealthy homemaker. Recently she explored an online clothing store in search of a pair of gym wear. During the visit, she was given suggestions based on her previous purchases, purchases of similar customers, and the most frequently purchased styles. She adds one of them to the shopping cart and checks out. In most cases, apart from a follow-up email, most customer interactions comes to an end there. But, this is how the story spins like when we activate Jenny’s data: A week later, she receive an email saying “How to stay healthy in your 40s? ” from the retailer. Being intrigued, she clicked and watched a video on healthy workout and eating habits. Another week down the lane, she gets a message on her iPhone coaxing her to use the stores mobile app to unlock an additional 20 percent discount on workout equipment. Though she never bought such items at this store, she takes advantage of the offer and purchases a new treadmill. What started as a decision to buy a pair of gym wears ended up being an elaborate customer engagement.
This kind of data-activated marketing rooted on one’s real time needs, interests and behaviors is the representation of a part of the modern horizon of growth. It effectively boosts the traditional sales by 20 to 25 percent and digital sales even more. It also improves the ROI on marketing spend across various marketing channels.
Customer Data Platform: Redefining true personalization
Marketers engage in experiments, in a regular basis, testing the effect of varied customer experiences. But they are often muddled with the challenge of understanding what to prioritize. This challenge continued to plague marketers regardless the promise of solutions such as CRM, MDM, MRM etc. Even though these solutions help the companies, they don’t take full advantage of the digital signals customers provide. Instead, they rely on outdated “list-pulls”, fundamental segmentation, and campaigns, all lack the automated decision making, as well as adaptive modelling and agile data utilization to scale personalized interactions.
Here enter the Customer Data Platform (CDP), a data discovery and automated decision making platform, enables marketers to scale data-driven customer interactions in real time. CDP hasn’t broken into Gartner Magic Quadrant or Forrester Wave till now, but it is gradually shaping the industry standards and categories.
Activating your data, one step at a time
Integrating a CDP into an organization involves mastery in four major sectors – whether piggybacking on an existing Master Data Management (MDM) or Customer Relationship Management (CRM) or starting afresh. These sectors can be called as the 4Ds of modern marketing.
- 1. Data Foundation: Building customer perspective
Just as a recipe does not come together until all the ingredients are combined, data only makes sense when it is connected. CDP combines all the customer data and creates insightful profiles and makes it accessible across the organization. Use of advanced analytics and machine learning help in feeding the CDP with abundant data continuously and hence generate granular customer sub-segments.
- 2. Decisioning: Exploiting data signals
The insights gathered from customer’s behavioral cues enables marketers to engage them with more relevant and personalized content and channel.
- 3. Designing: Crafting the contents
Engaging the customers stands far apart without the right content to deliver. The mini fiefdoms inside the companies create new ideas, devise experiments, designs hypotheses, and develops exclusive offers, personalized messages etc. Later the content is tagged and delivered.
- 4. Distribution: Conveying the experience
When connected with the CDP engine, the “delivery pipes” become far more directed one sending specific messages to hyperlocals across all addressable channels. An incorporated feedback loop sends customer response, conversions data and engagement details back to the CDP and enables the tracking of experience.