Three things struck the same chord with me last week and prompted me to ask the above question (in my head) to virtually every retailer I subsequently encountered…
First, an in-depth discussion with one of our senior management team around how all campaign management seems to be outbound and acquisition-based. Personalisation strategies are for new customers, while login pages are for existing customers.
We have spoken at length in this blog about personalisation being key to customer marketing across the entire lifecycle, but here lies further evidence that brands are not embracing the concept anywhere near well enough. Indeed, if it is deployed at all, it is within an acquisition strategy.
Second, a chat with one of our clients who had pretty much asked herself the very same question of her own brand, prompting her to deploy Profile Cloud to help build a customer-centric experience both before and after purchase. She identified that the brand actually lost trace of its customers post-purchase and, consequently, were losing out on retention revenue and repeat purchases.
And last, my own shopping experiences throughout the week, where I was all but booted out of the door through which I originally came in (figuratively speaking), as soon as the financial transaction was confirmed and completed.
So I ask, are you losing your customers at the checkout?
For some brands, a transaction may mark the start of the customer journey. For others it is the peak of the lifecycle, possibly even the end of it. The latter might be true for longer sales cycles or more expensive products. But the reality is, in the modern digital, measurable world, neither has to be the case. Each and every brand can, and should, be monitoring customer interaction around the brand, from awareness right through to loyalty and evangelism.
This is not as hard to achieve as it may first appear. The reality is that, for most brands with an online presence, the data to achieve it is already there. Site visits, CRM data, web purchases, store purchases are all logged in one system or another, and the digital traffic on third party sites (such as social media) is not much further away. The challenge is stitching this customer data together and getting the disparate systems talking to each other. And leading brands that are overcoming this challenge are seeing unprecedented results.
Once the data is in place, flowing freely across the connected organisation in real time, marketers can focus on the creative campaign elements that help their brand stand out from the competition and drive better customer engagement.
This post was written by Martin Wallace