Increasing sales and winning clients requires more than a slick website and a social media presence. It takes combining sophisticated marketing campaigns, powerful customer relationship management (CRM), and business intelligence tools in just the right way to create an all-around engaging digital experience – and that’s what you want to be striving for this year.
Technology for the sake of technology is pointless. Now more than ever, marketers need to look for ways to combine technology platforms with marketing strategy to create engaging digital experiences that are both data driven and personalized.
Competition for attention in the digital world is high. Combine technology with these specific marketing tactics, and you will be on your way to delighting your customers and end users, which should in turn increase sales, all through your digital experience.
Understand the Customer Journey
Beyond knowing who your current customers and your ideal prospects are, you need to understand their paths to purchase and – more importantly – the customer journey.
Start by documenting the full experience of your customers at each touchpoint. That means social media, email communication, website traffic, customer support … Every time a customer interacts with your brand, that’s a touchpoint. What is each touchpoint, and what happens at each one?
Look for answers to:
- How customers find you
- Their favorite ways to engage with you once they find you
- The trigger that got the sale
- How you’re retaining each customer
Some people dive deep into disparate data sources to create customer journey maps with whiteboards and sticky notes. But why do that when you can use a tool like Salesforce Marketing Cloud, or perhaps you could try SugarCRM?
Answers to all these questions lie within your data and can be accessed via dashboard technology, if you use the right business intelligence tools. Once you understand your customer journey, you can improve the customer experience at every touchpoint.
Think Integrated Marketing Whenever Possible
Your social media, marketing, PR, sales, and even customer support teams should all work together as one integrated force to collect data and deliver frequent and ongoing interactions with customers and prospects.
When a person signs up for your email list, are they added to a CRM that tracks the actions they take from there? How about if they contact customer support? Do you follow up with a survey or offer? Are your website analytics integrated with your Facebook analytics so you can see everything in one dashboard and make adjustments based on performance?
Technology can help you integrate all your marketing channels so that keeping up with and tracking customer touchpoints is easier. When you integrate all your data, you can make better decisions faster. CRM tools can help keep track of your customers and help you create frequent and ongoing interactions across your marketing channels.
Business intelligence tools can pull in all of your analytics, so you can see how your campaigns are performing and make adjustments and better predictions for future campaigns.
Automate and Personalize
How much of your marketing is automated? Marketing automation has been around for a while, but an added layer of artificial intelligence makes it even better. Combining marketing automation specifically with artificial intelligence can save you time and money while increasing your sales (and even giving your image a boost) through the personalization of interactions.
Artificial intelligence (AI) can analyze, scan, and learn from huge sets of data – something that a human could not possibly do (efficiently). This kind of technology gives businesses the ability to zero in on specific segments and deliver customized experiences based on interactions with your brand.
By using intelligent algorithms, AI can help personalize website experiences, email communications, and push notifications. AI can even be used to chat and learn from customers through chatbots. Want to re-engage a customer before you lose them? Use AI-based programs to suggest add-on items in your marketing communications based on interest and activity.
Here’s the really good news! You don’t have to be a developer to get these great benefits! There are plenty of tools out there already that can help. For example, Salesforce Einstein tools can help you cross-sell and upsell at the right time, as well as deliver the best content through personalized recommendations.
Dive Deep Into Your Data
Marketing is just one area of business that data science can greatly impact. Data science makes it possible for you to get deeper insights into your customers, to position your advertisements for better visibility, to ultimately close more sales, and to deliver customer lifetime value calculations that will improve your direct marketing strategy.
Unfortunately, not everyone has a data scientist on hand to help wrangle, clean and analyze data – unless you use the right technology tools (and have the right people to set up those tools).
We recommend Salesforce Einstein – the data science component of Salesforce.com. Salesforce Einstein lets you discover insights, predict outcomes, and help customers get what they want. Within Einstein, predictive lead scoring reveals which leads are more likely to convert. Forecasting helps predict future value, like reaching quotas. Recommendations help online shoppers get more bang for their buck.
Ultimately, delivering engaging digital experiences comes down to data and technology. You need the right data, delivered in the right way, to get the insights that will guide your decisions and strategies. And, you need the tools to help you automate and personalize to help move each person who interacts with your brand across the journey from “just browsing” to buying.
Do you know where your data capabilities and your marketing strategy stand? Are they integrated in the right way to get you the best results? More importantly, are you getting the actual business intelligence you need in order to make the best business decisions?
One way to find out is with your own Strategy and Roadmap session with RTS Labs. Schedule your roadmap session today and start getting answers.