In 2015, we continued to see marketers focus on developing their customer journey strategies. This trend is keyword searches for ‘customer journeys’ is forecast to continue to rise throughout 2016.
1. Marketers will connect their Marketing, Sales & Service data in the cloud
Marketers have traditionally built out linear customer journeys within their marketing automation database. The marketing campaign response data was rarely fully integrated back into their Sales & Service databases for other parts of their organisation to leverage from this data. In 2016, we will see organisations look to connect their clouds using API’s for real-time data integration.
2. Marketers will develop a lifecycle strategy for all segments of their prospect & customer base
Marketers have traditionally had an adhoc approach to campaign execution… batch and blast. In 2016, marketers will move to an ‘always-on’ approach to ensure each segment of their customer base is receiving a personalised and segmented communication at the acquisition, on-boarding, engagement and retention stage of their lifecycle and within their preferred channel.
3. Marketers will continue to optimise for the 1%ers
Marketers will continue to test & learn within all of their digital campaigns and channels. The focus in 2016 will be to test a combination of online and offline channels for improvement in the acquisition stage of the lifecycle. Campaign testing in the on-boarding stage of the lifecycle will focus on driving additional upsell opportunities at the early stage of a new customer relationship whilst customers are most engaged. For the engagement stage of the lifecycle, marketers will focus on testing content…what type of content is driving the most levels of ongoing engagement e.g. Video, Infographics etc and for the retention stage of the customer lifecycle Marketers will focus on relevant partnerships to drive loyalty with their customer base e.g. bars and restaurants in the hospitality industry will provide complimentary UBER black services to VIP members.
4. Marketers will have a dedicated budget for a specialist agency partner focused on lifecycle marketing & CRM integation
In 2016, marketers will add lifecycle marketing automation & CRM agencies to their roster of other digital agencies. The appointment of a specialist lifecycle marketing automation & CRM agency is critical to ensure all components of an organisations prospect and customer strategies are aligned and integrated. This includes ensuring all contact rules are in place and being respected to ensure customers have a good experience when being marketed to by brands across multiple channels.
5. Marketers will integrate push notifications into their customer journeys via Apps
Historically, brands who developed customer apps did so in a silo. The problem with this approach is that it excludes marketers from using app behaviour and/or location to drive further engagement with customers. In 2016, marketers will look to developing apps within a technology framework which can easily integrated with their marketing automation database. e.g. Heroku with Salesforce Marketing Cloud.
Managing Director, Datarati