by Jeanne Roué-Taylor
It would be really hard to overstate the changes happening in marketing as our world is immersed in burgeoning amounts of all types of data. We suddenly have data that allows us to measure marketing performance through platforms that accumulate historical and real-time data from mobile, web and in-store sources like never before in history.
This definitely gives us visibility into how our campaigns performed, but there’s something more urgent happening that not everyone realizes—the need to see the marketing business from a new and powerful perspective. We need to understand the game before it even begins—before the campaign is executed—through actionable models and analytics that tell us what the rules are, where the game takes place, and how to play.
Three Areas of Understanding
The game is decided by three key areas of understanding that are critical to being competitive:
These trends mean that advanced analytics aren’t simply a nice-to-have. They’re a key part of being competitive and also building brand loyalty, customer retention and brand advocacy.
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by Jeanne Roué-Taylor
Today’s marketers needs to be focused intently on all of the data that can be gathered about their customers. This modern reality means that data’s two dimensions—”what we know” and “when we know it”—take on a completely new and higher level of importance. This is exactly why CRM falls short when it comes to capturing interaction with the customer in a way that tracks and improves the relationship.
Marketing Is About the Context
The limited data model of traditional CRM systems lacks the context required to engage customers in the best ways possible. That’s because the data available to marketers today isn’t simply historical interaction like transactions. With the data generated by mobile, Web, social and location technology, we can have the context of the customer’s current moment, where decisions are being made, enriched by the over-the-shoulder information from systems like CRM.
Managing Data’s Two Dimensions
This data coming from all directions presents an enormous opportunity for marketers to know more and to know it much more quickly than ever before. Excellent management of data’s “what” and “when” dimensions makes customer engagement a carefully analyzed, modeled, and orchestrated event, instead of an unwanted intrusion. It has relevance and value rather than being noisy and ignored.
Order In Data Chaos
If you’ve ever been to an air show, you know that the planes involved appear to be on the edge of chaos as they make high-speed passes and other stunts. Marketing data today is the same carefully orchestrated but high-speed exercise that we see in the sky. As marketers expand what they know and shorten the time to know it, the customer feels a seamless and immediate experience with the brand. With the right technology, interacting in the “now” moment, despite the noise, looks elegant and easy. Most importantly, brands know what to expect in real time and what will likely happen next.
To learn more, visit www.loyalylab.com/expertise
By Jeanne Roué-Taylor
There’s a truth in customer experience management brought about by rapidly changing technology—marketers are better off 80% right today than 100% right three months from now. Today’s marketing math delivers better results from fast turnaround with good data rather than perfect data that takes far too long to assemble. Traditional marketing approaches looking for perfect data segments simply aren’t competitive any longer.
Intersection of Big Data and Real-Time Information
The math has changed because of a combination of new technologies like mobile, social, and in-memory storage, all creating and managing enormous amounts of data that feeds remarkably powerful analytics. At the intersection of Big Data and real-time information, marketers are finding that analytics changes the game of interactions in the moments that count, in the context of the customer.
Visualization and self-discovery performed against a growing list of available digital information shows patterns we could never see before that allow us to test and learn with every interaction. But there are challenges to taking full advantage of marketing’s new math. The biggest challenge comes from the fact that customer data is found in many places, never in just one.
Customer Systems Evolved Separately
As computerization of commerce progressed over the past few decades, the many things we need to know to provide the best customer experience evolved separately. Information today is stored in many disparate systems, which are even located both on and off premise. Waiting for change won’t help—no monolithic system is going to show up that can replace what already exists, and anything that does is too rigid to be useful as consumers and markets evolve rapidly.
Connecting The Dots
This is precisely why integration is hot technology for marketers, feeding analytics with all kinds of current and historical information that allows marketers to be mostly right very quickly—right enough and fast enough to make a difference.
Discover how companies are making up with volume and speed what they lack in accuracy and completeness. Download the whitepaper Top 10 Marketing Trends for 2014.
By Jeanne Roué-Taylor
Customers are rarely a homogenous group. They differ greatly in revenue potential, levels of loyalty, and frequency of contact. What makes loyalty work, therefore, is an ability to segment your customers using powerful analytics. Segmentation allows the right amount of effort and right offers to be applied in the right moments to the right customers.
Knowing enough to segment properly takes powerful analytics. Unless analytics are a key part of your loyalty platform, odds are you won’t be able to do much more than old-fashioned transactional loyalty.
But segmentation isn’t such a simple thing. There are common segments based on how people shop—like price or convenience—but below those broad categories, there are more subtle ways to segment based on what is required to engage a customer in the right moment with the right offer. This is the description of behavioral segmentation, and takes a capability to test and learn that wasn’t available until recent times.
Test and Learn
Test and learn provides a way to find segments that may not otherwise be visible to marketers. By choosing existing segments and testing offers on a smaller scale, new segments can be developed and marketed to in a larger way. The opportunity to test and learn is a benefit of a customer loyalty platform that includes powerful visual analytics.
In the end, everyone shops for a different reason. Marketers armed with the tools to not just segment along traditional lines of age, race, and other factors—but also to test and learn—have a distinct advantage over those who don’t.
By Jeanne Roué Taylor
There’s so much customer data around us, and it gets richer and faster each and every day. People are talking non-stop about Big Data and its many uses in various parts of the market. But what’s not really getting as much attention is how analytics are used to make loyalty platforms effective for meaningful customer engagement.
Powerful analytics are on the critical path to understanding customers and when to engage, something we call right-time marketing. Right-time marketing is more nuanced than real-time marketing because it takes into account the data that supports the best time for the right kind of customer interaction. It isn’t a simple action-reaction cycle that turns customers off and can even come across as creepy and opportunistic.
Analytics Done Right
Analytics, used appropriately, allow a brand to understand many aspects of customer engagement, including:
By understanding this kind of data, which is often ignored or unavailable because of silo’d systems, brands understand exactly when, where, and how to interact with their customers. This changes the model for customer engagement, and makes the customer much more than a pitch and transaction.
It Takes a Platform
It takes a loyalty platform to bring together, analyze, and respond appropriately to all of the fast-moving, rich data available today. Are you ready?
By Jeanne Roué Taylor
The enormous amount of ink being spilled around Big Data often includes the phrase “amazing insights.” At the same time, there’s plenty being said about the need to know and respond to your customers in the timeframes that matter, aka customer loyalty management (CLM).
While these customer loyalty management ideas seem intuitive, too often, the ways we gain insights into customer loyalty aren’t directly connected to the action side of the equation. This happens either because the technology that supports insight-to-action or the skills/individuals required to do this efficiently and effectively are artificially separated…or both.
The latency or customer blindness this creates is what differentiates great customer loyalty management from the mediocre. So what can be done to make insight turn into actions?
Models are great tools for bringing together diverse data sets and preventing insights and actions from “falling through the cracks.” A great model brings together data from several sources, feeds analytics, makes predictions, enables test-and-learn scenarios, and allows the organization to adapt as data, channels, and other factors change over time. In a nutshell, models support an organization’s ability to be dynamic and responsive in their customer loyalty management.
Just as important as the model is the ability to spend less time on reports and dashboards while increasing the transparency of program performance. That can only be done when the marketer’s toolset can dynamically segment and show purchase propensities. Segmentation isn’t a new idea, but the ability to adapt segments and prediction to what’s happening in real time is very ‘new-generation’.
As we move closer to the moment of decision, thanks to mobility and faster data, our ability to know, predict, and then respond must also be fast. A customer is only on the website until they’re not, in the store until they’re not, and waiting for your interaction until they’ve moved on to something else…or engaged with your competitor.
Models, analytics, and execution are core components of today’s capable customer engagement platform. Any less is too slow and lacks coherence within the brand and worse, across to the customer. Are you ready?