Epson’s Journey Towards Data-Driven Customer Centricity

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  • The “numbers game” is over.Although the sales funnel may not be dead, there’s no doubt that “the numbers game” approach to marketing (cramming as many leads into the funnel as possible in hopes that more deals will come out) is over.The “numbers game” approach to the sales funnel is flawed for two reasons. For one thing, this method implies that there is some sort of gravitational pull at work on the funnel, and a percentage of all leads subjected to this pull will result in closed deals. Obviously, no such force exists. In reality, if two million leads are fed into the sales funnel but none are a fit for your product, odds are that none will come out as closed deals.Furthermore, today’s consumers don’t just appreciate smarter marketing, they’ve come to expect it. If you’re still blasting your message out to millions of unwilling and disinterested recipients, you’re not just risking your message being ignored — you’re risking giving your company a bad reputation.The buyer’s journey has changed…Marketing now owns a much larger portion of the sales cycle, and the traditional sales funnel fails to recognize this.With inbound marketing on the rise, most consumers are subjected to a multitude of marketing touch points before they ever speak with a sales rep. They’ve read blog posts, downloaded white papers, done their research on social media — they have a pretty good idea that they’re interested in the product before they even pick up the phone. And if a sales rep has done his or her research, these touch points can reveal a lot about a prospect’s needs and interests without having to ask, further shortening and simplifying the sales portion of the cycle.…And it’s anything but passive.Remember that gravitational pull we mentioned earlier? The one that doesn’t exist?As we mentioned before, more prospects doesn’t necessarily mean more clients, but the passivity of the traditional sales funnel is flawed for another reason. Prospects won’t just fall through the sales funnel, they need to be engaged — and increasingly so.Forrester represents this phenomenon with an escalator rather than a funnel: a prospects’ engagement level must be elevated at each stage of the journey, as they move from awareness to interest, to consideration, to commitment, and (hopefully) to advocacy. The advent of inbound marketing and the increasingly informed buyer makes this continual engagement a necessity, and calls for a stronger emphasis on customer retention and client advocacy than ever before.So if the traditional sales funnel is passive, overly simplified, and blind to the buyer’s journey, what does this new and evolved sales funnel look like? According to Forrester’s report, something like this:
  • The “numbers game” is over.Although the sales funnel may not be dead, there’s no doubt that “the numbers game” approach to marketing (cramming as many leads into the funnel as possible in hopes that more deals will come out) is over.The “numbers game” approach to the sales funnel is flawed for two reasons. For one thing, this method implies that there is some sort of gravitational pull at work on the funnel, and a percentage of all leads subjected to this pull will result in closed deals. Obviously, no such force exists. In reality, if two million leads are fed into the sales funnel but none are a fit for your product, odds are that none will come out as closed deals.Furthermore, today’s consumers don’t just appreciate smarter marketing, they’ve come to expect it. If you’re still blasting your message out to millions of unwilling and disinterested recipients, you’re not just risking your message being ignored — you’re risking giving your company a bad reputation.The buyer’s journey has changed…Marketing now owns a much larger portion of the sales cycle, and the traditional sales funnel fails to recognize this.With inbound marketing on the rise, most consumers are subjected to a multitude of marketing touch points before they ever speak with a sales rep. They’ve read blog posts, downloaded white papers, done their research on social media — they have a pretty good idea that they’re interested in the product before they even pick up the phone. And if a sales rep has done his or her research, these touch points can reveal a lot about a prospect’s needs and interests without having to ask, further shortening and simplifying the sales portion of the cycle.…And it’s anything but passive.Remember that gravitational pull we mentioned earlier? The one that doesn’t exist?As we mentioned before, more prospects doesn’t necessarily mean more clients, but the passivity of the traditional sales funnel is flawed for another reason. Prospects won’t just fall through the sales funnel, they need to be engaged — and increasingly so.Forrester represents this phenomenon with an escalator rather than a funnel: a prospects’ engagement level must be elevated at each stage of the journey, as they move from awareness to interest, to consideration, to commitment, and (hopefully) to advocacy. The advent of inbound marketing and the increasingly informed buyer makes this continual engagement a necessity, and calls for a stronger emphasis on customer retention and client advocacy than ever before.So if the traditional sales funnel is passive, overly simplified, and blind to the buyer’s journey, what does this new and evolved sales funnel look like? According to Forrester’s report, something like this:
  • Research has found that over 75% of consumers today use more than one channel to make a purchase decision. This has three significant impacts:Recognizing customers across channels is fundamental to influencing their purchase decisions.Getting the right message to the right touch-point at the right time could easily mean the difference between a sale or not.Brands need to ensure a consistent experience across touch-points, or the customer will perceive the business as impersonal or even incompetent.Multichannel challenges must be addressed with a comprehensive view of the customer, or brands risk losing relevancy, revenue, and cost reductions.
  • The result is most organizations are lost in brand disharmony, where each channel is a separate universe and each customer is a different customer based on their channel of interaction. This immature view makes it hard to track customers and give them a quality brand experience. The impact is a significant cost burden in time, money and lost opportunity.
  • The landscape is shifting from advertiser driven to consumer driven adsNow rather than serving in context of what’s been browsed, you can actually make an informed decision with a tangible degree of confidence based on the individual and their associated activities such as purchase history, demographics, interests, intents and propensities.Individual is the thread that ties it all togetherBy marketing to individuals, you are also able to do more precise testing through cross channel control groups, etc.All of this results in more accurate measurement by utilizing all consumer exposure as well as sales across the enterprise (in store, call center, online, etc)
  • A single view of the customerA consistent customer experience across channelsWanted to begin to standardize on how we CollectEnhanceConnectAnalyzeAct or continue connectingDesigned for Flexibility and be able to ScaleEnhance the matching capabilitiesQueries taking too long so we had to normalize our dataCreate a few data marts for insights and speedKey individuals on both sides who know the system well, to ensure support is covered, but at the same time reducing the overall number of resourcesNegotiated significant discounts on Demographic and lifestyle data appends
  • Legacy SystemPolitical concernsOff site data warehousingSecuritySpeedSpace
  • ChallengeEpson America had 15 different silos of data across the organization. Customer information came in from interaction points such as the online store, rebates, product registration and customer support. With potentially so many different views of one customer, we were challenged to turn any new customer information into actionable data. We struggled with low response rates and duplicate mailings. It could take weeks to pull together the disparate data needed for a marketing campaign, and afterward it was impossible to measure results across channels. We had to replace our unstable ePiphany system
  • We had to get a handle on our complex, disparate dataMake it more user friendly
  • Teamed with Acxiom CorporationImplemented the data warehouseA state-of-the-art Customer Database that provides an enhanced, singular view into Epson customersBuilt the bridges between its many islands of data
  • Epson can tend to be Silo’d internally, but we do not want that to be the case for the enduser or our communicationsA consistent customer experience across touch points supports Epson’s brand position and helps us increase the value of the customer
  • Enhanced customer Portraits with insights and analytics enable much more focused targeting.Acxiom’s proprietary recognition technology provides additional match criteria to…locate duplicate customer recordsrecognize the customer’s most current and accurate name and contact informationmerge data into one record for each customerWe now take into consideration factors such as income, occupation, marital status, presence of children, interests or electronics usage.Transactional data from the online store, email, website and product registrations brings even more depth to each customer record.Modeling identifies segments of the database that fit certain desired criteria. Marketers consult dashboards to understand promotion response rates across the business.
  • May be more important, or at least equally important.
  • We can target on and across various marketing vehicles such as: email, Direct Mail and eventually for Dynamic Web page and email creation, usingGeoBehaviorsLifestylePurchaseUsage
  • ResultsIn just 90 days, the company reduced the size of its database by 60 percent. HIGHER RESPONSE RATESMore relevant offers and communications drive up response ratesWith targeting, Epson increased email CTO in one vertical by 100% and RPE by 800%REDUCED CAMPAIGN COSTSSignificantly cut the cost of its marketing and eliminated double mailings to customersREVENUE UPAcross all campaigns, revenue per email is well above plan, exceeding more than 62% year over yearDATA CONSOLIDATIONIn just 90 days, the company eliminated duplicates and reduced the size of its database by 60%FASTER TIME TO MARKETMarketing teams can sort and segment the database instantly – so campaigns go out weeks soonerMarketing reduced the time to prepare queries for campaigns from days or weeks to less than an hourINCREASED TEAM PRODUCTIVITY The company’s database specialist doubled her productivityBETTER CUSTOMER EXPERIENCEFewer mailingsNo duplicate mailingsMore relevant mailingsCommunicating different with consumer vs. business customersTESTINGContinually testing creative, messaging, segmentation, etc.ANALYZINGStudying the results of each campaign, each test, each tweakTWEAKINGAcross all campaigns, revenue per email is well above plan, exceeding more than 62% year over year
  • The project required coordination among all parties. The CRM and direct response team, IT, data communications, security and Acxiom spent three days together on site to develop the vision for the data warehouse – a major part of gaining comfort levels and the foundation or a smooth rollout. Designed for scalability and flexibility to address Epson’s marketing strategy and reduce support needs.Partner with someone who can mesh well with your in-house team and other third-party providers
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