Not long ago, companies focused on blasting messages out to reach the largest number of people possible. There was only one real option to promote new products and services: mass media. Radio, TV, print, direct mail and telephone were the primary channels available to get in touch with customers. Thanks to Cable, the Internet and mobile technologies, today marketers have the opportunity to communicate with their customers through a wide variety of various media channels across the entire buyers’ journey – with added benefit of being able to target and personalize the message to subsets of customers with common needs and interests.
The proliferation of media outlets and digital channels has created substantial noise and clutter in the marketplace. It’s tough, if not impossible, for a brand to stand out from the crowd. Accordingly, marketers had to adapt. The discipline of marketing is rapidly evolving to Individualized Marketing as consumers are increasingly expecting brands to deliver real-time, relevant messages.
Teradata Applications and Forbes Insights conducted a survey of more than 300 marketing leaders in major enterprises worldwide to discover the role of Individualized Marketing in business today. Not surprisingly, almost 80% of marketers stated that Individualized Marketing is a top priority for their companies. However, less than half are able to execute that strategy.
Only 43% of marketers said they are delivering individualized experiences for their customers.
So, how do you close the gap between strategy and execution?
First, let’s define Individualized Marketing more clearly. It’s the process of building experiences with customers and prospects – not through traditional customer segmentation, but by engaging an individual on their channel of choice in a consistent and relevant way. It requires marketers to identify and understand the customer as an individual, quickly and easily adapt to each customer’s changing needs, and execute marketing initiatives at a personal level.
“Individualized Marketing is not about sales.
It’s about building a relationship with the customer.”
– Product Manager, Convidera GmbH
Brands making the journey from heavy reliance on broadcast mass media to narrowcast, targeted, Individualized Marketing must be prepared not only to have an agile marketing process but also to promote connected interactions across numerous channels in an engaging way:
1. Practicing Marketing Agility
Companies must be agile to quickly measure campaigns “in-flight” and reach out to customers when, where and how they want to engage. Without the right Systems in place (whether it is technology, processes or people), the chances to execute a successful and profitable Individualized Marketing strategy are very low.
The survey conducted by Teradata revealed the best ways to evaluate your level marketing agility is to measure and monitor:
- Speed-to-market (i.e. efficiency with which you drive campaigns)
- On-time completion of marketing projects
- Customer focus (i.e. flexibility approach to make changes on-the-fly when customer needs change).
So, how can your team become more agile? Forty-five percent of respondents believe that technology is a critical factor to the success of their organization’s agile marketing efforts. However, technology is not as important as the people and processes you put in place to execute the strategy. In fact, 33% of respondents reported that “process and organization” are the most critical factors to better agility to engage with customers and to improve campaign results.
2. Generating Connected Interactions
As it was pointed out in eMarketer, the vast reach of broadcast media is still very appealing to brand marketers. “More and more marketers see the different channels as supplementing each other for a well-rounded campaign.” Integrating traditional broadcast marketing techniques and online technology exploits the unique advantages that each channel offers and makes an integrated strategy more successful. Using multiple forms of media allows targeting the message to specific segments and bringing the highest ROI.
Although 98% of marketers say they no longer make a clear distinction between offline and online marketing, only 40% of organizations have integrated both disciplines to strengthen connected interactions with their customers.
Using data to take the next step: Individualized Marketing.
There is a huge opportunity to interact with customers with simplicity, clarity, and alignment through various channels to not only create a compelling customer experience but also to gather valuable data for meaningful insights. These insights include understanding the customer needs and acting in real-time to meet the operational requirements to fulfill that desire.
“Companies need to fully understand their data. It’s not about classic key performance indicators, like they did before. They have to see the deeper business insights that data holds.”
– Product Manager, Convidera GmbH
Download here the complete report Personalized Marketing Out, Individualized Marketing In.
Before you can focus on personalization, your brand needs to have the right Story, the right Strategy, and the right Systems in place. Learn how to integrate TopRight’s 3S approach to bring simplicity, clarity, and alignment to your marketing efforts. Download our latest eBook Transformational Marketing: Moving to the TopRight.