The Life of a Customer


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  • I’ve been in digital marketing for 16 years. I started my career in media buying, spending $5MM a month on display ads for acquisition campaigns- capturing ~200,000 emails registrations per day. I worked at early real time bidding firm Rightmedia which was acquired by Yahoo. I’ve also founded and sold three digital marketing firms, with the biggest being a venture funded firm called Kenzei doing shopping cart/lead form abandonment for major B2C customers like Experian and AARP. Fast forward a few years and I joined Marketo and ran our Customer Success team, as well as personally managed our largest customers such as Google, Facebook, Amazon and Chevron. In January, I transitioned to a new role helping Marketo define and develop our B2C Consumer Marketing strategy and business development partnerships.
  • From the mission of Marketing, to how Marketing’s impact is measured, today’s CMO and her leadership team need to make sure they understand and are taking advantage of modern marketing approaches to align with the behavior of today’s buyer and to stay competitive. In particular, marketers need to make a shift from demographics-based marketing to behavior-based marketing, and from batch & blast tactics to continuous relationship-building and nurturing.
  • On any given day, the average customer will be exposed to 2,904 media messages, will pay attention to 52 and will positively remember 4 –SuperProfile 2010
  • Your consumer is like a sponge, and all those marketing messages are like the water.How do you ensure that your message is the one of the 4that get absorbed into the sponge? After all, a potential buyer can only absorb so much, and your competitors are vying for their attention too.
  • The answer: our communicationsmust be more trusted, more relevant, and more strategic. It must be more engaging.  Traditional batch and blast feels like shouting, engagement marketing feels more like a natural conversation. Notice how these women are engaged in conversation. There’s talking, but also listening going on. And the conversation, at least by the looks of it, seems to have a flow to it. [Refer back to this throughout the presentation: how important it is to effectively listen to online body language.]
  • But the problem was this: Nobody wants to get “blasted”.Think of the word blast....what do you imagine? It's a shotgun. Wide pattern, random spread, unfocused (for the most part) and an imprecise tool whose end result is one that sometimes leaves more damage than any benefit you might have gained. .. It hurts. Casualty of war.Terms like “hit the database” or “e-shot” are just as bad.
  • This is what it sounds like when done wrong.It beats an incessant drum for subscribers. And does not engage them or enthuse them to open in future,
  • The problem is that too many marketers think of their marketing like a gumball machine – put a quarter in, get a candy… put a campaign in, get responses. But that’s not how customers think of it – they see each communication as part of a broader relationship. “Every interaction is a link within the context of a communication supply-chain. Don't look at each discrete message, or even each campaign, as a unique event with a direct link to the end result. Marketing is not a candy machine. Instead, view each as a link in a chain of events each of which leads to other actions.” – IDC Technology Marketing Blog
  • Every interaction is a link within the context of a communication supply chain.Don’t look at each discrete message, or even each campaign, as a unique event. Marketing is not a candy machine.
  • This is more like what you want your communications to be….
  • This is more like what you want your communications to be….
  • To capitalize on this opportunity requires building relationships Personalized – focus on customer’s behavior instead of demographic, timely & meaningful interactions Durable – last a life time across various stages in life or buying cycle: ie. Credit card (younger) to mortgage rates to life insurance (older) Directed – Clear customer journeys with call to actions in place EngageLearnEvaluate BUYBuy EnjoyTrustADVOCATEOwnUseValue RENEW Individualized – Get to know me as a person (when I wanted to be contacted, how I wanted to be contacted, at what times I want to be contacted, etc..)Marketers can control more than advertising & awarenessGuide the customer journeyDirectly own the consumer relationshipBut most brands are still running campaignsCampaigns are company centric, not customer centricCampaigns are time-boundCampaigns have no memory; they lack contextMarketers must build relationships with consumers over timeHelp new customers feel like an existing customerThey’ll know you, trust you, buy from you when they’re readyKeep existing customers coming backWhy now? The marketer with the most customer relationships will win.
  • You think it’s easy, draw a simple diagram on the whiteboard
  • But the real world is not that simple. Real conversations are not that simple. Buyers do things you don’t expect. You can’t “script out” the buyer’s process, or the entire conversation. You wouldn’t show up at a cocktail party with everything you were going to say scripted out into simple “if-then” branches. You quickly see that “flow chart” like solutions are inflexible, and difficult to setup and manage. Lots of use cases to worry about.What is prospect does something?---Hard to use: The complexity makes them usable only for serious technical experts. As David Raab, marketing technology expert and consultant says, “I never saw a flow chart interface that actually did a good job handling complexity. So I've reluctantly concluded that flow charts are only suitable for serious technical experts.”Less agile. When you need to rewire complex flow-charts, it can take seemingly forever add or change the content in tracksError-prone, harder to be intelligent. The complexity of spaghetti makes it error prone. Too easy to send expired content, duplicate content, or too much content. “Why are you still sending me an invitation for a webinar from last week?” “I just downloaded this off your site 2 days ago, and now you’re sending it again!” “Do you guys realize how much you send me each day? I’ve had it!”Difficult to see who is where. It can be hard to know how many people are in any track at any given point, and even harder to see how many consumer have reached the end and “exhausted” the track. As a result, consumers may end up not getting any content unless you catch this!As a result, marketers using traditional solutions are limited in their ability to have an interactive, dynamic and customized dialog with prospects and customers. Quote: “My own opinion is quite firm: flow charts don't work. They look good in demonstrations and can lay out simple processes quite nicely. But they get impossibly convoluted once you try to do something complex.” - David Raab, marketing technology consultant and analyst
  • 18 triggers11 batches19 campaigns to manage the whole thing
  • Today’s consumers move seamlessly across digital and offline channels. According to a recent Experian QAS® survey, 36 percent of U.S. organizations interact with customers and prospects in five or more channels.In retail banking, 61% of consumers use three or more channels each month (e.g. branch, phone, online, and mobile – in addition to email). However, Companies Not Prepared to Deliver Integrated ExperiencesQUOTE: “Fewer than 10 percent of brands are executing true cross-channel communications informed by one view of the customer.” - The 2013 Digital Marketer, Experian = Big opportunity to increase relevancy.Organization silos:Traditionally, marketing organizations are made up of either product or channel teams. Within this structure, each team works hard to optimize their siloed marketing efforts — and, in most places, have gotten really good at delivering their individual marketing programs and defending their individual marketing budgetsTechnology silos: Many of the tools are focused on a channel — email, mobile, catalog or Web. The big challenge for marketers is that message delivery within channels almost always happens via disparate platforms. Especially a problem with ESP. Email “grew up” with companies using stand-alone email service providers (ESPs) and outside agencies. This legacy hangs over email today. Traditional email service providers (ESP) = not multi-channel, not channel agnosticThe modern, digitally-empowered consumer doesn’t think in terms of channels and doesn’t care about your silos.Uses whatever device they have in the moment… web, mobile, tabletSo, companies shouldn’t expect the consumer to adapt; companies should adapt. This means moving from channel- or promotion-centric marketing plans to customer-centric marketing plans, and enabling those plans with marketing technology that is ready to deliver.
  • So how can we be more relevant and engaging?You can’t be relevant if you’re broad.We know batch and blast does not work – it is simply less engaging. One way is to be more targeted – smaller sends = more engaging. Engagement Score enables marketers to quickly judge how effectively each piece of content is engaging prospects and customers over time… combines open, click, unsubscribe, conversion, and so on into a single metrics.
  • The key to relevance is behavioral targeting.So you want relevancy and engagement – but this requires sophisticated targeting that combines online body language (web traffic, search behavior, email response) plus transactional data plus with lifestyle and demographic data (personas)When behavioral cues are not used, email can be experienced as a dissonant interruption. What the sender considers a coordinated "drip campaign" may feel more like water torture to the receiver.
  • Here’s an example of how Marketo created even more relevance.Topic of interest nurturing: Nurture tracks based on four different topics that we thought our customers were interested in (email, social marketing, marketing automation, and Microsoft Dynamics). Welisten for signs that may be interested in this (events attended, web visits, keywords used etc.), and if so assign them to the specific track nurture track. If they get to the end of that specific track, we put them back to regular until they do something else specific.
  • Result: Big lift!More on our blog about this:
  • Not all segments need to be different email versions
  • purchase history, deposit, withdrawal, cart abandonment, data usage, etcCLOSING:Fundamentally, consumers increasingly expect this. They know how much information is available, and expect marketers to use it. They expect you to know the answers questions such as: What did they want? What did they look at? How did they react? … and then to use that information to create more relevant interactions.
  • Email service providers traditionally don’t help much. ESPs tend to only track email behaviors (open, click) in their local database. Lacking connection to other buyer touch points, standalone email services are unable to inform communication with more personal behavioral cues.But for more sophisticated targeting, they rely on technical databasesThese lists come from complex queries written by technical experts, not marketers. This includes API calls, SAS queries, and some email providers even tout the fact that their queries can be written in “good old fashioned SQL” (they even provide functionality for handling situations where the SQL-queries time out!)Don’t use dumb lists, use a smart database – easy!!And easy to change
  • While this may be straightforward for programmers, it’s a foreign language to most marketers…This makes the marketer reliant on technical resources for anything that’s not simple, especially anything that incorporates behaviors beyond email open and click
  • Jon talked about personalized emails, but what about other channels. People reply to a great email, but then go to a website that is not personalized.
  • As website owners, we’ve long had access to data about where our visitors come from. For example, you can tell whether a visitor came from Facebook, an organic search, or an email link. Today, we can react to that data in real time, and serve up customized content accordingly. Similarly, we can customize our websites based on whether someone is a first-time or repeat visitor. For example, you might show a first-time visitor your “How to Get Started” screen; a repeat visitor might be presented with more in-depth information.For example, you might show a first-time visitor your “How to Get Started” screen; a repeat visitor might be presented with more in-depth information.
  • Analyzing a visitor’s IP address can give you his or her physical location, and you can personalize the experience based on that. For example, Marketo uses location to personalize the currency we use to display our prices and to customize the information we ask for on forms. As another example, a clothing retailer might offer board-shorts to a visitor in San Diego, a sweatshirt to one in San Francisco, and a winter coat to a visitor from the frigid East Coast. Going further, they can dynamically present pictures of jackets and umbrellas if it happens to be raining in the visitor’s location.
  • If a visitor is surfing from work, you can use their IP address to look up their company, which allows you to match your visitor to an industry. Understanding which industry an individual works in can determine the images you use, the products you highlight, and the type of case studies you offer.  As the simplest example, visitors from the healthcare world could be shown images of doctors and medical labs; those from financial services might be shown large buildings and currency.You can also use this technology to engage with specific target accounts. Create customized marketing content for a company you’re targeting, and then deliver that specific content to anyone visiting your site or mobile app via that company’s IP address.
  • Many companies have created detailed persona descriptions, and know what messages and content resonate with each persona. You are already customizing your nurture tracks to be relevant to each persona, so why wouldn’t you do the same for your website?  By integrating your website personalization technology with your marketing automation tool, you can match each visitor to the correct persona, and then target those visitors with the most relevant message, value proposition, or case study.Nurture
  • Here’s where we get to targeting nirvana: one-to-one, absolutely unique individual personalization. You customize each visitor’s experience according to exactly who he or she is—not as a company employee, industry, or persona, but based on his or her exact preferences, history, and relationship with your company.For some companies, this could mean giving a visitor who only made it halfway through the check-out process an opportunity to finish that transaction, or upping the ante with a better offer. For companies with longer sales cycles, you might share educational thought leadership with early stage prospects; visitors who are actively engaged in a sales cycle could be shown messages about why your company is a safe choice. More broadly, use your website to reinforce the last email seen by a prospect, creating a truly coordinated experience—regardless of whether you send the message to the customer, or the customer comes to you.
  • Location
  • Results of the campaign- tremendously high clickthru rates. Except the swiss don’t seem to click!
  • Standard default
  • Better example – based on specific things they’ve looked at before.
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