Marketers have certainly made headway in meeting the expectations of customers both online and off. However, according to a new study by CMO Council, there is still an opportunity to reach deeper to create a competitive difference that cuts through the clutter and leverage channels that truly make an impact.
The study, “Shopper Marketing: The New Rules Of Engagement,” includes insights from 166 senior marketing leaders, paired with a survey of 2,100 North American consumers. One of the key findings is that data strategies are still goals and not yet a reality, with 35% of marketers admitting their organizations have a data strategy in place, but it isn’t a embraced throughout the company. What’s more, 23% said no strategy exists at all.
“Marketers admit that reaching that point of real relevance might be harder than expected, primarily because while marketers have developed data strategies within marketing, extending that plan across the organization to gain a more complete view of the customer has proved to be difficult,” said Liz Miller, VP of marketing at the CMO Council. “Many marketers admit that their organization has yet to fully embrace the criticality of data.”
Indeed, 43% said their organizations have yet to fully embrace data as a critical operational requirement; an equal amount said it is just too hard to get the entire organization to agree on a data strategy.
“The second big finding is that not only can marketing not extend its view of the customer beyond marketing, the view absolutely stops at the walls of the company, as only 13% of marketers are getting insights into behaviors and actions on partner or retailer sites,” Miller explained. “Marketers have built their own walled garden around marketing’s view of the customer. But the customer actually lives well outside of those walls, and they say that if brands insist on irrelevant engagements, the price will be customer defection.”
According to the report, 83% of marketers said customer data is informing them of behaviors on the brand’s website, but only 13% said their data points to customer behaviors outside the brand and retail partner sites.
As part of the consumer survey portion of the report, the CMO Council found that 32% of consumers reach out to brands to solve a problem or because they have an issue or complaint. Four percent said they want to connect with a specific personality of the brand, and 5% said they are doing so for fun.
Additionally, the survey found that consumers want savings and rewards that are based on their own past purchases (47%). When asked what forms of advertising or promotion moved a customer to buy, coupons and discounts (regardless of delivery channel) topped the list (71%), followed by suggestions from friends and family (39%). When asked to specify which form of advertising was the least effective, 29% of consumers pointed to TV ads, followed by radio ads (20%) and mobile text ads (20%).
“This emphasizes the need for CMOs to really champion customer experience and rally the organization around data strategies that can bring the most relevant insights about the customer into a single pane of glass for the entire organization,” Miller said. “The great news here is that customers are ready. Forty-seven percent want coupons, savings, and promotions that are based on their past purchases and experiences with the brand. Sure sounds like a call for personalization.”
Click here for the full report (short registration required).