2014-04

Top 5 Digital Marketing Trends From The Teradata Marketing Summit, 2014

by Denise Tung
 | 
01 April 2014

The ‘Creep’ factor, the connected consumer and what’s in store for digital marketing in Australia

Real-time. Data driven. Relevancy and true personalisation in today’s channel-agnostic world of marketing communications. These were some of the key headlines that featured at the most recent Teradata Marketing Summit, held in Los Angeles over 4 days in March.

Imagine a world where you know that you’ve made the most out of every customer engagement, you proactively share information on your product, services or brand that hits the mark on what your customer is ultimately looking for, without them even consciously knowing it. Optimised engagement for optimal ROI. That’s nirvana for any marketer.

At the Summit, around 572 attendees from a mix of disciplines across Marketing, CRM and consultancy collaborated on a multitude of topics that was ultimately pointing to making this world become a reality, not tomorrow, but now.

My top 5 digital marketing takeouts from this Summit:

1. Learn, Engage, Act, Repeat.

Planning your campaigns, its content and timing of the delivery of when you communicate this to your customers are traditionally scheduled a couple of months out and predictable. With the scale of social media communities and the time poor customer, choices of which brand to buy from need to be made quicker, yet in an informative manner.

To stand out from the crowd, interactions with your customer need to be spot on. This means marketers must learn quickly about how to best drive a customer to purchase your product or service. This involves:

  • The capture and mining of big data, across digital and traditional touchpoints are invaluable insights to match key customer segments against the most relevant offer;
  • Using this insight to decide on the choice of channel that is most preferred and engaging for your customer
  • Once your customer journey is mapped out against each unique market segment or persona, apply optimisation and automation techniques such as A/B testing and lifecycle marketing that automatically initiate communication based on a set of triggers, such as clicks, opens or a customer submitting new information about them;
  • Continuous review your results, and tweak your program design and rules to ensure your results continue to climb.

Not surprising, around 51% of consumers and clients will purchase more if the customer experience is positive, and to achieve this, 85% of customers are willing to share info about themselves if value is shown.

Whilst the concept of big data seems daunting, starting small with the guidance of your digital strategy and marketing objectives (e.g. is it to drive more acquisitions, reduce churn, increase ROI?) will determine the insight and data points you need to optimise and execute your campaigns in a timely manner.

2. The ‘Creep’ factor: how context is different to relevancy

As Australian marketers desire to be more personalised, targeted and timely with how and what they communicate, our U.S counterparts are now grappling with the ‘creep’ factor: the misuse of customer behaviour such as online searches to drive recommended products or services to that customer. A video of a common scenario is found here.

The question that marketers need to keep asking themselves is whether such recommendations will bring value to that customer. Whilst we know personalisation works, it’s easier said than done, but there are some simple methods that you can apply to get you started. That’s for another blog post :)

3. Know how you’ll measure success, in real-time, ahead of campaign kick-off

Gone are the days where initiatives across email marketing, SMS marketing, direct mail and in-store make sense just for the sake of keeping communications going. These days, CMO’s are tightly aligned to corporate performance, so it’s important to track and link campaign performance to the bottom line.

Again, start with what you know: current cost per channel, operational costs (resources and software costs) to run the campaign, and apply tracking techniques such as click-to-convert, click-to-open and conversion tracking pixels to directly relate each sale back to your marketing message. Then using some logic that the business can understand, link these back to critical corporate metrics such as customer lifetime value, ROI and profitability targets.

On achieving real-time insights, reporting is passé: business intelligence tools such as Tableau, Cognos and Dataxen that offer data visualisation, dashboard and drill down capability are empowering U.S marketers to see the bigger picture in one view.

A large financial institution was able to attribute their investment in automated campaigns and process workflow to over $1mil in staff costs, yet achieve response rates that were 3 times higher than before the investment and which then contributed around 25% to the company achieving P&L targets.

4. Rich, multi-channel customer experiences drive higher ROI

Think storytelling, not campaigns. As a large and successful fast moving consumer goods company implicates, walking in the shoes of your customer and thinking about their motives, their lifestyle and needs will build brand love. It gives a brand purpose.

For marketing communications, anticipating the device and environment that your message will be most likely viewed forces you to think holistically about your customer and how they want to best engage with your company, in-store, online and over the phone. Each engagement then becomes purposeful for both the customer and the marketer, in the long term citing heightened advocacy and natural affinity to advocate your product and brand.

The result: reduced acquisition costs, increased engagement, higher customer satisfaction which all contribute to greater ROI.

5. Design your marketing organisation to realise these practices

Taking your marketing communications to the next level doesn’t happen overnight. But what’s critical to success is knowing what capabilities you have in your team, the gaps on skillset and software that will help you take your campaigns to next level, and recognising the arduous process of change management.

A successful airline identified the biggest challenge in evolving to having real-time insights, being data driven and achieving agility in campaign delivery was managing change. This included recognising the need to outsource certain activities such as creative and template design to companies whose talent pool is clearly focused on this as a core competency.

Snippets of the Summit can be found on Twitter under hashtag #teradatasummit. All statistics quoted within this post is sourced from the Teradata Summit, 2014.

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About the author
Denise Tung

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