real-time decisioning

1月 262013
 

SAS World Headquarters

The idea of customer centricity in marketing is as "old as dirt" - it's probably been around as long as people have been interested in buying or selling things to each other. So why are we still talking about it, and why is it so seemingly elusive for some organizations?

The short answer is that it's just not that simple. Markets, buying processes and even the products themselves have become so complex, that sometimes the customer can get lost in the shuffle, so fortunately we have marketing analytics to get us back on track.

Key themes in today's quest for customer centricity and how marketing analytics plays a role emerged from the buzz at our most recent "Customer Intelligence Customer Connection" event. It's a special annual event where we host our Customer Intelligence customers at SAS Headquarters for a few days of interactions with thought leaders, SAS experts and other customers. Here are just three of them:

Real-time inbound processing
One recurring theme was that real-time, inbound processing has come of age. Organizations are recognizing that contact center engagements in real-time on the phone or via chat are as important as the traditional view of customers as outbound targets from the marketing deparment. What bodes well for that trend is that analytically-driven real-time decisioning has also come of age to enable the contact center to be relevant in real time - and take another step toward customer centricity.

The evolution of social channels
Another theme is that social media channels are not just for customer service or brand analytics - they are increasingly used also as marketing and information sharing channels as well. And as organizations engaged in social media make this evolution, it becomes increasingly important for them to link their social data with other forms of customer data. The customer sees you as one organization no matter the channel, so for true customer centricity, it's important to regard them accordingly and use social media analytics as part of a broader marketing analytics strategy.

Conversation Marketing
Finally, there was much talk about the concept of the product purchase lifecycle and "conversation marketing." The idea is that customers spend more time than ever researching purchases online - whether they buy online or in a store. So it's not simply about omni-channel retailing, but thinking about customer communications as a conversation. Marketers can no longer think in terms of simple outbound offers or inbound messages, instead thinking of communications as an entire conversation with individual customers. The "conversation" means helping with their research phase, their purchase phase, and even their follow-up support phase.  The key to have the "conversation" is both multichannel integration and also a timing aspect in terms of waiting between messages and being attuned to potential lulls, or lack of interactions, and redirecting based on marketing analytics for profiling and segmentation.

So how do marketing analytics impact customer centricity in your organization? Share your perspectives with a comment, or join us at this year's Customer Intelligence Customer Connection - details coming soon!

tags: conversational marketing, customer centricity, customer segmentation, marketing analytics, real-time decisioning, social media, social media analytics
1月 262013
 

SAS World Headquarters

The idea of customer centricity in marketing is as "old as dirt" - it's probably been around as long as people have been interested in buying or selling things to each other. So why are we still talking about it, and why is it so seemingly elusive for some organizations?

The short answer is that it's just not that simple. Markets, buying processes and even the products themselves have become so complex, that sometimes the customer can get lost in the shuffle, so fortunately we have marketing analytics to get us back on track.

Key themes in today's quest for customer centricity and how marketing analytics plays a role emerged from the buzz at our most recent "Customer Intelligence Customer Connection" event. It's a special annual event where we host our Customer Intelligence customers at SAS Headquarters for a few days of interactions with thought leaders, SAS experts and other customers.

Real-time inbound processing
One recurring theme was that real-time, inbound processing has come of age. Organizations are recognizing that contact center engagements in real-time on the phone or via chat are as important as the traditional view of customers as outbound targets from the marketing deparment. What bodes well for that trend is that analytically-driven real-time decisioning has also come of age to enable the contact center to be relevant in real time - and take another step toward customer centricity.

The evolution of social channels
Another theme is that social media channels are not just for customer service or brand analytics - they are increasingly used also as marketing and information sharing channels as well. And as organizations engaged in social media make this evolution, it becomes increasingly important for them to link their social data with other forms of customer data. The customer sees you as one organization no matter the channel, so for true customer centricity, it's important to regard them accordingly.

Conversation Marketing
Finally, there was much talk about the concept of the product purchase lifecycle and "conversation marketing." The idea is that customers spend more time than ever researching purchases online - whether they buy online or in a store. So it's not simply about omni-channel retailing, but thinking about customer communications as a conversation. Marketers can no longer think in terms of simple outbound offers or inbound messages, instead thinking of communications as an entire conversation with individual customers. The "conversation" means helping with their research phase, their purchase phase, and even their follow-up support phase.  The key to have the "conversation" is both multichannel integration and also a timing aspect in terms of waiting between messages and being attuned to potential lulls, or lack of interactions, and redirecting based on marketing analytics for profiling and segmentation.

So how do marketing analytics impact customer centricity in your organization? Share your perspectives with a comment, or join us at this year's Customer Intelligence Customer Connection - details coming soon!

tags: conversational marketing, customer centricity, customer segmentation, marketing analytics, real-time decisioning, social media, social media analytics
1月 192013
 

I have been fortunate enough to work on some of our various marketing analytics’  implementations. One specific solution I have talked about before is Customer Experience Analytics (CXA), a solution that facilitates the integration of online and offline data for better customer insights and segmentation. It is a key part of our overall marketing analytics' capabilities.

Marketing analytics: What is it?

We define it broadly as:

Marketing analytics gathers data from across all marketing channels and consolidates it into a common marketing view. From this common view, you can extract analytical results that can provide invaluable assistance in driving your marketing efforts forward.

OK, so here’s where Google comes in. As we build towards a marketing analytics workbench, our use of CXA has delivered web analytics we can use in our datamart at a contact and company level. Google, which delivers over 50% of all our site traffic, is an extremely valuable partner. They are delivering us a majority of our traffic which we can now analyze with our marketing analytics solution.

We have gathered search data and combined it with our other channels in our datamart. With this, we have an opportunity to apply a number of analytical methodologies that drive our decision making (Matt Fulk writes about how we use marketing optimization ). Our goal is to bring all of this rich search and web data into our  marketing analytics workbench to drive our online demand and lead generation strategies.

Here is where Google fails. I am disappointed that they have restricted search query data (in the name of privacy and security) from those signed into any Google account.  Not coincidentally, we do receive search queries for our growing paid search investment. Search guru Danny Sullivan provides terrific analysis of this in his article: Dark Google: One Year Since Search Terms Went “Not Provided.” This is a real miss for Google and the other search engines. For instance, here is a snapshot of the search queries passed to our datamart for one of our web pages:

Almost seventy five percent of all queries are blocked. This effectively limits the value of search queries (which can help with corporate priorities like personalization, segmentation and customer experience) as part of our overall marketing analytics workbench.

What does this mean for Google and other search engines?

  • With other big data to utilize in our marketing analytics workbench, search data will be limited to points like time on page and click through rate. The most strategic data point, search query, will be underutilized or not used at all.
  • The value of search in a digital marketing organization will not be fully realized. Digital marketers will all soon run off of some form of revenue attribution model  for their digital investment.  By limiting data points that can be attached to revenue generation, the overall spend for search investment may be negatively impacted

I am of the mind, as a person who uses search engines frequently, that my query is a call for help. Anyone, and that includes marketers, can use it to better serve my information needs. The ability to utilize search data within our marketing analytics workbench is critical. Google is a business partner in helping deliver relevant traffic.  It would be most useful if they could also help our analytical marketers and data scientists – of which Google has 600  – as well.

tags: analytics, big data, customer segmentation, google, lead nurturing, marketing analytics, marketing automation, real-time decisioning, relevance, web analytics
10月 202012
 

Standing in my own crosshairs as my own target market means that almost all work that I do can be a learning opportunity, and going to DMA2012 was certainly a biggie. What I saw and experienced at the show reaffirmed the idea that it’s never been more exciting to be a marketer, and that marketing has never been more important to the lifeblood of all organizations- large and small.

If you’ve never been to the DMA annual conference, it’s a colossal bazaar of just about anything that might interest marketers, and the opportunities to see, hear and experience the best of the best are seemingly endless. As a result, I fully realize that my recap of the five big themes at the conference puts me at risk of falling far short of this event’s full value because there’s literally only so much that any one person can do. That said, please read on with that thought in mind.

  1. Data is fundamentally important to customer-centricity and relevance, but it’s meaningless when not also paired with smart marketers.
    Analytics can transform how we engage with our customers, but only when it’s at the hands of knowledgeable marketers who are plugged in and paying attention – tweaking and revising when they spot errors or false positives based on their broad knowledge base. This was a recurring theme to be sure:

    • DMA’s acting President-CEO Linda Woolley presented some moving examples to underscore her point that marketers can change the world with data.
    • Chris Anderson, Wired Magazine’s Editor-in-Chief also made that point explicitly during the Monday keynote session.
    • That same point came up again as practical examples in the sessions with Disney’s Steve Whittington, Staples’ Jim Foreman and the last-day panel with Zappos execs.
    • Scott “Unmarketing” Stratten gave numerous examples of awesome possibilities of data used by marketers with the right attitude, and other examples of disastrous outcomes that are equally possible and the key variable is the person – not the data itself.
  2. Marketing today is a balancing act – on multiple fronts.
    Big data and all its implications came up over and over again at this conference, and what I heard from the speakers is that knowing what to do often comes down to balancing goals and key considerations.

    • With so much of our lives happening online, the data streams are both overwhelming and unbelievably valuable. A wise use of data is for insights and profiles like we’ve never had, whereas an unwise use is revealing too much and creeping out the customer.
    • The ability for analytics to turn Big Data into gold makes it easy for us marketers to delude ourselves into thinking that achieving perfection is within reach. But holding out for perfection is seldom right answer. Jeffrey Hayzlett put it succinctly in the Wednesday keynote panel when he said: “Don’t let the perfect get in the way of the good.”
    • Both Staples’ Foreman and Disney’s Whittington made the point that there are limits to what you can do with data. The balance is struck by the individual that understands when you reach diminishing returns, or if you’re reaching the wrong conclusion.
  3.  Marketers need to be respectful of the customer and their need (and right) to privacy and dignity
    If we do not control ourselves, others will do it for us.

    • DMA’s Linda Woolley called it out in stark terms with a specific listing of 20 pending bills in Congress that materially impact data-driven marketing. What happens in Washington and in all capitals around the world matters, and we should not misbehave to the point of driving legislation. Validation of this big point came via Twitter since my simple tweet about this ominous sign was one of my most re-tweeted during the conference.
    • Scott Stratten put it in simple, everyday terms when he differentiated between being “awesome” and being “un-awesome.” Misusing the power of data is one of the quickest ways to offend a customer, and in our social-savvy world that misuse could easily mean alienating large swaths of your hoped-for customers.
    • David Fischer, Facebook’s VP of Business & Marketing Partnerships painted a future vision of great possibilities based on social data that’s very compelling based on Facebook’s sheer size, and perhaps unwittingly served to remind us just how powerful (and dangerous) access to customer data can be.
  4. Marketers need to match the dynamism of the market to drive innovation.
    Zappos’ cross-functional panel vividly shared stories of how they evolve, collaborate and stay focused on their priorities – no surprise that customers and culture are 2 biggies for them. Jeffrey Hayzlett’s fellow panelists in the Wednesday keynote offered great variations on that theme:

    • Google’s Retail Industry Head Stephen Arthur talked about innovation coming from putting all individuals on the same plane regardless of title.
    • Tommy Hilfiger’s VP of E-commerce Jared Blank urged us all to rethink how we’re organized as a way to find new sources of innovation.
    • Salesforce's Chief Strategy Officer Jeff Ragovin suggests that we be willing to pivot when needed and getting all functions comfortable with digital-social.
    • Gilt Groupe’s CMO Elizabeth Francis sees more collaboration across organizational lines as the future of marketing.
  5. Mobile marketing is far more than just another channel.
    In addition to big data and on-line real-time marketing, another theme loomed at DMA2012 in a way that will surely grow for all marketers: mobile. It came up over and over again in sessions, roundtables, keynotes and hallway conversations and as consumers continue to depend more and more on smartphones, it stands to transform how we live (and therefore how we market).

    • The T-mobile roundtable led by Eric Helmer addressed how they are using analytics to drive retention by merging campaign management with social network analysis techniques,
    • Scott Stratten showed multiple examples of bad uses of QR codes to drive home the point that misusing an innovation is also the quickest way to give it an early death – it’s all about the customer experience. Here are some of the biggest sins of the QR code that will drive people to start ignoring them:
      • Embedding it in an email where they can’t scan it because they’re reading it on their device,
      • Putting it on the back of a bus (causing you to text-and-drive),
      • Using it in a subway car ad (where there’s no wireless signal), and
      • The big kahuna: pointing the QR code to a site that’s not mobile-friendly.
    • Gilt Groupe’s Francis called out a key point her fellow keynote panelists agreed on: few companies today are organized to seize the mobile opportunity.

 Those are my big takeaways and I’m certain I missed a few. If you were at DMA, please leave a comment with your thoughts about what I’ve shared and let’s hear about others I may have missed.

tags: analytics, best practices, customer segmentation, events, facebook, marketing, real-time decisioning, social media
9月 152012
 

I recently read an excellent research report by the IAB and Forrester titled Digital Attribution Comes of Age (full disclosure, SAS was a sponsor). In the paper, they talked specifically about improved multichannel measurement, data driven decision making and media buying leverage for marketers. Attribution, for me, is the natural evolution of marketing mix modelling and striving to find marketing ROI.

So let me ask you as a marketer - if your VP of sales asks you to grow the pipeline by 25% (say from $80M to $100M), what would you do? Would you want to know which digital touchpoints and various combinations of engagements would help you generate these dollars? Would this be helpful? I think so and I believe your web analytics, when used properly, can help you get there.

Web analytics and digital attribution

In my last post, I shared my thoughts on web analytics and demand generation  and how to manage and optimize web behavioral data. Your company strategy around demand generation will lay the groundwork for how you address attribution. First off, the topic of attribution can be a tricky subject internally as you may reveal some things that are politically sensitive (nobody wants to hear that their work is underperforming or underwhelming). If you are ready to take on building out a digital attribution model, here are some steps we've found helpful:

  • Web analytics and content tagging – One feeds the other. If you don’t have content consistently tagged in a way that can feed lead nurturing programs and recommendation engines  – start here. Then make sure you have an advanced web analytics solution that feeds into your database.
  • Build out your attribution model – A majority of marketers use first click or last click attribution. This view does not provide a complete picture. Your web analytics should now tell you what the individual’s behaviors are across all forms of 'ungated' content -  from articles read to offers they hovered over. Tie all of this together, build out an analytically driven model, and see what is really putting those dollars in your sales teams’ pipeline. For example, when you can identify more sales opportunities coming from specific digital channels, you can shift your investments quickly and confidently.
  • Web analytics and real time – It is critical to move quickly once you have your content tagged and models built. If your web analytics solution has a real time engine integrated into the solution, your time to value shrinks. For most marketers, the goal is to have your interactive marketing efforts and digital media buys all point people back to your website. Once there, real time engines deliver analytically driven offers and content that pulls people through the sales cycle and lets their behaviors dictate where they go next. The data will tell you what they value and find influential.

Right time. Real time. Next best offer. Next best action. These are not just fancy buzzwords, but achievable marketing objectives. Please let me know your thoughts and any examples you see of companies doing this well.

tags: attribution, content marketing, customer experience analytics, database marketing, digital marketing, lead nurturing, real-time decisioning, web analytics
8月 252012
 

My colleague Matt Fulk and I were looking for a follow up to our white paper, Lead Management Automation Using SAS, which covered our evolution with marketing analytics. One initiative that has really been rewarding to work on has been the internal implementation of our Customer Experience Analytics solution. For me, the most exciting part has been seeing the evolution of web analytics from an ad-hoc reporting tool into a true analytical solution that integrates with the rest of our customer intelligence solutions .

I touched on the broader notion of web analytics in my post, 4 Ways to Match Online Behavior with Real Time Offers, and in retrospect it seems we were just scratching the surface. We have learned a few things since then; some of which I share below:

Web Analytics and Demand Generation - What Can I Do?

  1. Web behavior and analytics are a powerful combination – Our lead nurturing capabilities  let us see what we could do with email optimization . Combining our other data sources has allowed us to segment better , realizing on the fly that individuals or accounts are looking for something specific. This has helped us modify our customer touchpoints and create customer insight driven content. Our What is big data page is a nice example of what can come from that combination.
  2. Use a real time recommendation engine – Ever since Amazon and Netflix made it popular, executives have been demanding – “get me one of those.”  With these new data sources and a real time engine to deliver them, the behavioral marketing set now has their ideal solution. I really believe that digital marketers have a real opportunity here. This is a must have for marketers involved in demand generation.
  3. Development of the analytical marketer – The evolution of big data requires marketers to develop new skills and process reengineering. As a practitioner, this means a fundamental shift must take place. Strategies like lead nurturing, lead management automation, content marketing, organic customer acquisition, and adaptive contact planning  didn’t exist a few years ago. Customer intelligence solutions like marketing automation, web analytics and marketing optimization were not as advanced and pervasive as they are today. Analytical skills were left to database marketing and other quantitative analyst positions; they were not a requirement of roles like corporate, product and field marketing as they are today. There is now a need for extreme focus here.

As a marketer, I am excited to be a part of these developments. I have been hearing about “single view of customer” and “personalization” since I was in college, and now we are real close to seeing that become a reality.

If you'd like to hear more, I will be sharing this story at DemandCon in Boston on October 1-2, 2012 in a presentation titled Web Traffic in the Funnel. Join me and others as we talk about B2B demand generation, web analytics and more.

tags: analytics, customer intelligence, lead nurturing, marketing automation, real-time decisioning, web analytics
5月 252012
 

Panel discussion: How well do you know today's customer?

Today's second annual SAS Financial Services Executive Summit included a great panel discussion moderated by Lori Bieda from SAS, and featuring Greg Holzwarth, SVP and Managing Director, Customer Information Management at SunTrust Bank, Harvey Koeppel, former CIO and SVP of the Global Consumer Group at Citigroup, and Joseph Grillo, VP of Direct Marketing, Global Accident and Health at ACE Group.

The panel explored how they have used analytics to better understand their customers in today's digital world. Along the way, they touched on key topics critical financial services industry marketing, such as the need to focus on customer experience and challenges in getting complete customer profiles considering the veritable explosion of big data.

In terms of customer experience, Greg offered that SunTrust seized the opportunity to focus on customer experience during the most recent financial crisis by building their own loyalty model, called Live Solid / Bank Solid.  They based the program on what they know about their own customers, as opposed to using a generic industry model, and they centered the program on customer experiences, and based it all on analytics.

Harvey described the approach they took at Citibank when they merged with Traveler’s in 1999 to become Citigroup. The consumer group was then a $14B business, servicing 150 million customers in 54 countries around the world. Identifying customer experience across all channels was recognized as being fundamentally important, so their strategy was based on both experiential data and behavioral data that informed next best conversations. As the different bank operating units had interactions with the customer, they updated profiles in real-time and then shared the data across all channels.

Joe brought an interesting perspective from the insurance industry, and he said that the largest insurers are all comparable in terms of analytic capabilities, but how they differentiate themselves is in terms of the implementation.

Our digital world and the advent of social media have clearly changed the rules for customer valuation and customer interactions. Harvey described how the approach at Citi was focused on the conversation and maximizing the value for the customer. As a global bank serving global customers, they knew they should take steps to be sure for instance that a New York customer could walk into a branch in London and be treated as if they were dealing with their home branch in the big apple. Not an easy task, but certainly enabled by technology.

As they looked to the future, these industry leaders considered the impact of both social and mobile on the expectations that customers have, and the necessary changes to meet those expectations. Harvey cited location-based services and how they would play a big role in real-time customer interactions in banking, with possibilities such as competitive geo-fencing so mobile customers receive your offers when they check in at one of your competitors.

One thought raised is a recurring theme recently on this blog, which is the idea that all marketers today have to balance how they use social media data and customer data with avoiding being creepy. It's interesting how everyone can relate to the bad feeling they might get when they realize they're being stalked or followed, so it will be interesting to see if consensus develops over time regarding the limits of creepiness or if limits will change over time once the use of customer analytics becomes more universally apparent.

The discussion ended with the idea that big data is unavoidable when considering the role of analytics and social media in helping marketers know their customers . Harvey noted that the amount of video content uploaded to YouTube in any given week is more content than was produced by TV and movies for the entire history of analog video recording.

Considering all these possibilities and constraints, it seems the question, "How well do you know your customer?"may not always be an easy one to answer with certainty, but considering ever-changing customer expectations and empowerment, it's a question worth asking over and over again.

tags: customer analytics, events, real-time decisioning, social media
12月 232011
 

According to Wikipedia, marketing with music can roughly be traced back to 1923 with the dawn of commercial radio broadcasting.  What we now know as a "jingle" first aired on Christmas Eve in 1926, touting the merits of General Mills' Wheaties cereal.  As we all know, musical messages have since become a staple for advertisements on broadcast and other electronic media because they are very effective.  There's no denying that the catchy tunes stick with you, so the intended messages stick with you, too.

As many of us may be aware, holiday music also stays with you- they are often catchy, upbeat tunes that you hear repeatedly and they end up stuck in your head.  For me, it rings especially true because, as I mentioned in my 2010 holiday message, a holiday music soundtrack runs an ongoing loop in my head this time of year.

In that context, I offer this opportunity to hear a few holiday music staples mashed up with key themes explored in this blog during 2011.  THe list below has links to the related tags embedded in the titles.  For best results, please read/sing these out loud with the corresponding holiday tunes in your voice:

Do You Search What I Search?
"Said the analyst to the website's tags:
Tell me who has surfed here!
What terms struck a chord ev'ry time?
Tell me where they surfed next!"

Rockin' Around the Nurtured Leads
"...adding value to the funnel!
Customer interest at all time highs,
Tells me campaigns 're meaningful."

Hark! The Cust'mer Database Sings!
"...Meaningful segmen-ta-tion!
Fewer bad inter-actio-ons,
cust'mers hear our messages."

Feliz Sentiments!
"Feliz Sentiments! Feliz Sentiments!
Feliz Sentiments picked up with social media analytics!
I wanna know what people 're sayin'!
I wanna know how to respo-ond!
I want to know about the viral storm before it starts to fo-orm!"

Grandma Got Run Over in Realtime
"...chatting live with contact center reps!
Without access to the correct profile,
we lost the chance to meet her needs right then!"

Walking in Retention Wonderland
"eMails work - but if you're list'ning!
If you're not - they're just annoying!
A beautiful sight, an opt-in tonight!
Walking in retention wonderland!"

And for continued excellent results in the coming new year, let's end by bringing you back to the best first step in any data-driven marketing plan:

Auld Lang Data
Should data quality be forgot,
Your decision making suffers!
The first step in good marketing
Is to get your data clean!"

As always, I'd love to hear your suggestions for other topics you'd like to see explored in 2012.  You can also propose any of your own holiday music - marketing mashups.  Either way, I appreciate your following and look forward to another great year in 2012.  Happy Holidays!  JB

tags: analytics, customer experience analytics, customer segmentation, lead nurturing, real-time decisioning, retention & loyalty, social media analytics
10月 032011
 

As previously mentioned, I am at DMA:2011 in Boston with David Meerman Scott and he was the featured guest at our executive dinner this evening.  We invited marketing executives attending this conference to have dinner with the best-selling author, who will also present in the Thought Leadership Series tomorrow at 1:45pm.

Our guests included marketers from the US, Canada and Europe and from a range of industries.  Each brought unique perspectives from their industry that made for very interesting discussions.  One agency executive with a large automotive manufacturer client explained how large an impact the dealership network has on establishing (or unraveling) long-term customer relationships.  Another great interchange was sparked by the comments of a credit company executive raising issues about airline affinity programs and issues with customer relevancy.  I very much enjoyed the interaction among our guests, as well as the way that David facilitated the discussion by adding his own perspectives.

He incorporated parts of his latest best-seller Real-TimeMarketing and PR in ways that kept the discussion focused on the overall real-time marketing theme of DMA this year.  Interesting tidbits he included from his book include:

  • Seven times more sales can be driven by responding to website inquiries in 5 minutes versus 24 hours.
  • Of 100 leading companies he analyzed, only 28% were engaged in real-time marketing.  The stock price of those companies went up an average of 3% in the last year versus all other companies, whose stock price declined 2%.

When asked about his thoughts about prospects in the coming year, he replied that he’s never seen a better opportunity than right now for smart marketers.  Those that understand we’re in a real-time, data-driven world are the ones that will succeed.  When asked what advice he’d offer to companies who are looking to adopt a real-time approach to their marketing, David offered two tips:

  1. Take more steps to understand what people are saying about you and respond to them immediately.
  2. Make your website real-time friendly – understand what’s happening on your pages and have real-time triggers to events.

It should come as no surprise that in both his views on prospects for the coming year and his advice for marketers, my mind immediately made the connection to the role played by social media analytics, customer experience analytics and real-time decisioning solutions in enabling marketers to understand, predict and respond to rapid developments online and in social media.

One thing I think we can all agree on – real time marketing is a mindset that needs to be encouraged because our markets are now happening in real-time, and customer analytics will enable the operationalization of  real-time marketing for the enterprise.

It’s an exciting time to be a marketer, indeed.

tags: customer analytics, customer experience analytics, customer intelligence, real-time decisioning, social media analytics
9月 272011
 

For marketers with a lengthy, complex sales cycle, it is still imperative to engage a potential buyer as quickly as possible with relevant information. In an online world, tools like “click to chat” help with those willing to engage  with vendors. In handling the volume of interactions of those who are not yet ready to engage - potential customers at multiple stages in various buying cycles - you’ll need a solution that can manage your strategic communications. A recent post on Marketing Profs, titled The Funnel is Dead, Long Live the Measurable Customer Narrative, highlighted a couple of key challenges for marketers as they develop this narrative:

  1. Marketing is structured around campaigns, not customers.
  2. Marketers don't measure a linked sequence of customer actions across all touch points yet; they still think in terms of pre-sale and post-sale, not a relationship that can last a lifetime.
  3. Marketers have been determined to control the narrative rather than create digital touch points of content and experience; and then measure how people interact with those touch points.

This new reality poses a significant opportunity for marketers that are close to their data and understand their customer’s digital experience. SAS is doing a number of things here from a customer analytics, social media analytics and web analytics standpoint to help harness these vast data sources for marketers. Fortunately for SAS marketers, we are able to utilize these cutting edge solutions to help us take the best marketing action.  Our Customer Experience Analytics solution offers our marketing organization a whole realm of capabilities when it comes to matching online behavior to content and experience. We already do lead scoring to determine what sort of marketing interaction should take place (Matt Fulk talks about it in his post: Lead Management Automation: 5 Steps to Implementation). Our goal is to deliver personalized content and offers based on what we learn from online behavior – origin, depth, recency, frequency, social and more.

How to match online behavior with real time offers:

  1. Develop business rules for one-to-one marketing Process and technology are the cornerstones for handling large volumes of interactions.
  2. Lock down your content strategy I talked about tips for aligning your content strategy with your digital strategy in a recent post. Don't pay lip service to content. It is a critical component. No matter how fancy you get with your marketing and technology capabilities - if your content is no good - you aren't going anywhere.
  3. Implement a solution that tracks and scores data across multiple touch points, utilizes marketing automation and optimization, and surfaces appropriate content and offers. A serviceable web content management system is critical here - either as a component or standalone.
  4. Operationalize your web analytics Making behavioral data the engine behind real time offers gives you next generation marketing capabilities. As we continue to refine our digital strategy and focus on customer behavior to determine our marketing, it has become clear that the predictive capabilities of web analytics and optimization models are the marketing language of the future. Marketers using or developing them now have a succinct advantage over those who are not.

Portions of this post sourced from the white paper: Solving the Challenges of Lead Management Automation

tags: Campaign Management, content marketing, customer analytics, database marketing, marketing automation, online, optimization, real-time decisioning, web analytics