Accurate personalisation is a core component when creating successful customer experiences. But when you have an annual customer audience of 76 million – as Heathrow airport does – how can you deliver accurate, relevant personalisation at scale?
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Of course, all retailers want to deliver a great experience for their customers at every touchpoint. However, achieving a seamless customer experience at scale – such as in an airport environment – is a substantial challenge, both strategically and technically.
Whether you’re a frequent flyer or just passing through, when you’re in an airport, you’re interacting with an omni-channel marketing ecosystem that’s able to sense and react to you in near-real time.
Taking Heathrow airport as a practical example, interactions with known customers are hyper-relevant, tailored and timed to perfection. But even if the only thing Heathrow knows is that you’re using the free Wi-Fi, this ecosystem can still guide you towards a great experience.
Achieving customer experience success in complex environments such as Heathrow Airport is a challenge. Yet with the right operations in place, it’s possible to turn anonymous travellers into happy customers.
The Importance of Connecting and Activating Your Data
To achieve a considered, scalable and relevant customer experience, it’s important to be able to connect data sets to each other, before connecting them to the right people, across the new data economy and marketing ecosystem.
An Open Approach to the Single Customer View
The notion of a single customer view has been around for decades. It began in direct marketing databases but has existed in CRM systems, ESP systems, and campaign management systems.
It’s been managed in data warehouses and more recently data lakes.
But as marketers adopted new tech, new channels, new data sources and new teams, that view has only become more fragmented and harder to map.
Activating Data In The New Data Economy
The explosion of consumer data has been a catalyst for widespread innovation in marketing techniques and technologies.
But even with a flood of available data sources, most marketers still struggle to find the insights into their segments they need to make customer experience people-based, relevant and consistent.
Four Fundamentals of Data-driven Customer Experience
For your customer experience to be relevant, consistent and scalable, you need your data to be ready for four fundamental imperatives:
Omni-channel customer recognition
Activating data in the new data economy
An open approach to the single customer view
This post will take a closer look at the first of these fundamentals; omnichannel customer recognition.
You don’t need us to tell you how competitively vital customer experience is¹, how consumers would pay more for it², or how many business and marketing leaders now prioritise it³.
But having a vision of a relevant, consistently effective and scalable customer experience is one thing. And actually delivering those experiences to real people out in the wild of the wider marketing ecosystem is another.
In this blog post we highlight some of the key implications emerging from the DMA Customer Engagement 2016 research report.
What are the most promising customer engagement strategies that will chime with what consumers look for, expect and desire from brands?
In this blog post we bring together the core learnings from the findings in the DMA Customer Engagement 2016 report and distil them into overarching themes to help define the key routes to creating positive customer engagement.
What brand engagement responses will resonate most strongly with consumers, and how can brands innovate to meet these in the near future?
Consumer Brand Engagement
The gap between consumer expectations and brand delivery is especially striking when looking at preference vs. current engagement.
There is a clear disparity between what people’s favourite brands are doing to interact with them and what they like/ would like them to do. Consumers want feedback, reward and attention for engaging with brands.
Next we outline what criteria makes people engage with retail brands (non-FMCG, both in-store and ecommerce) –
- What reasons would people prioritise when asked to think about why they like retail brands they favour?
- Why do they choose to continue to shop with certain retailers?
- Importantly, what types of interactions do they really want to receive from brands?
Seconds after David Dimbleby announced the referendum result I posted on social media that we can now relook at the EU data protection reforms.
After all, brexit in its most likely form will mean the UK no longer has to follow European law. I was surprised therefore when many privacy pundits started to write that brexit would make little or no difference to the impact of the General Data Protection Regulation on the UK.
A Background on Buying Behaviour
When looking at people’s buying behaviour across different categories, both habitual and value-savvy behaviours are at play to varying degrees, and even simultaneously.
When buying clothes or cosmetics more than a third would claim that they usually choose their favourite brands but just 16% and 14% would do this when buying electronics or furniture respectively. Conversely people are more likely to want to shop around when buying items in the electronics or furniture category, and be more prepared to buy from a new brand.
Market research is too often written in the language of marketers.
To understand the language consumers really use to describe their interactions with brands the DMA conducted a primary qualitative piece with 1,000 consumers to uncover the terminology being used by shoppers to discuss their retail and engagement experiences.
We’ve put together an 8 point how-to customer engagement checklist:
1. Functional first: Consumers prioritise hard benefits such as convenience, quality, deals and good service and data driven strategies can help marketers constantly improve how they deliver on consumers’ core wants.
- The top reasons why brands are favourites are quality (72%), service (64%), offers/deals (62%) and being the most convenient/easy (57%)
- 72% are interested in receiving a delivery alert status after purchasing a product
“In a maturing digital age, consumer channels are growing exponentially, and so is the need – and the difficulty – in engaging with customers on a relevant, personal and contextual level.” Tomas Salfischberger CEO, Relay42
As marketers we all want to truly understand customers’ experiences, and prepare ourselves for new technologies and media, arriving at an increasing pace. But above all we need to understand what good looks like.
The Value of Adopting A Single Customer View (SCV)
The value in tracking the customer is now not so much in understanding what happens at each customer touchpoint. Instead, it is important to be able to manage the incoming data flow about the customer’s activities so that the experience at each touchpoint is relevant to that point in their journey.
The Rise of Ad-Blocking Software
Presenting a personalised advertising experience through direct channels is only part of the marketing puzzle. Despite the rise of ad-blocking software, targeted advertising remains a vital part of the brand arsenal.
The Dimensions of Consumer Trust
The idea that data ties the experience and the emotional element of buying together is vital. It’s about moving the consumer’s perception that their data is all to the brand’s benefit, building trust in the data and essentially building those long term customer relationships.
The Difference Between Getting, and Keeping The Customer
With so much focus on data as an acquisition tool (registration forms being the prime proactive data entry moment) it is easy to forget that delivering a value exchange for data on an ongoing basis, is vital for customer loyalty.
Consumer wariness, coupled with a willingness to lie on registration forms to avoid marketing can create substantial challenges for marketers hoping to use the data.
Research Around Customer Attitudes to Sharing Personal Data
To say that customers’ attitudes to data are contrary is like saying that piranhas can get a little bit upset. Copious research has been done on the subject and the one common thread is that consumers are quite comfortable holding two completely opposing ideas simultaneously.
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