Driving the Customer Experience Agenda Through Marketing Automation

Today a slick and engaging digital experience is no longer a choice for organisations looking to provide a stand out customer experience – it’s a necessity that’s expected in every situation and at every stage of the buying process. That’s why we at CleverTouch headed to the Wellcome Collection to host our latest event along with Jack Ashman, EMEA manager, Solutions Consulting at Marketo, and Marty Lyon, Head of Marketing Technology at Ascential, to explore how Marketing Automation can help organisations drive their customer experience agenda in today’s hyper personalised world.

As technology further changes the way we work, it’s important to stay on top of these developments and utilise them to maximise the effectiveness of your marketing strategy. It is predicted 40% of fortune 500 companies will not exist in 10 years’ time as they’re not able to keep up with the rapid pace of digital transformation. There’s no doubt that technology is key to the future of your organisation.

To kick off the event, CleverTouch joint managing director, Elaine Webley, took to the stage to highlight the importance of rapid adoption when delivering the customer experience expected today. Technology is a vital tool in providing this bespoke experience today: a great connected customer and brand experience is one of our 12 business reasons for investing in Marketing Automation. It’s an investment that has massive upside – as Elaine highlighted – relevant emails delivered in a personalised way can drive 18 times more revenue than standard one-off email blasts.

Alongside this, Elaine explained how Marketing Automation helps convert and retain your customers whilst nurturing the relationship through the sales funnel and providing your teams with a better understanding of their needs. Although the customer journey through the ‘sales funnel’ may not be linear, with sporadic brand interactions such as social posts, blogs, events and other accessible content – but, as marketers, we must do our best to try and understand their journey. It’s more about understanding and educating the customer to add value and earn their trust, rather than simply selling to them.

When investing in marketing technology, it’s important to start with the spine that really addresses the needs of your business, explained Elaine – otherwise it’s easy to get daunted by all of the 8,000 marketing technologies out there. Once the MarTech spine has been established – CMS, CRM, MA and BI, only then should you build out the stack with other MarTech tools to support your marketing strategy. When working with our valued customer, Fujitsu, we ensured that the technology was really working for them and, more importantly, their customers. Elaine also outlined how we utilised the MarTech spine to pull customer data and inform every touchpoint of the campaign. There’s no point in creating beautiful content if it’s not presented to the customer in the right place and at the right time! With Fujitsu, every interaction at each stage of the campaign informed the next stage of the bespoke journey to ensure that the customer felt valued and understood, rather than spammed with pushy sales emails.

Building on this crucial idea of a bespoke customer journey, we also heard from Marketo’s Jack Ashman as he explored customer experience from the perspective of the Adobe family. Jack explained how customer experience management lies at the intersection of so many different technologies today, so, understanding where each customer is in their respective journeys can be a challenge.

Marketo’s own research highlighted that 48% of businesses have lost sales because they have failed to engage customers so, although B2B marketing is not simply B2C at scale, it’s still vital your campaigns are compelling, and you make that emotional connection with your customer. Controversially, GDPR provided a great opportunity to reassess what data your company has and how it can be used to personalise the customer experience. After all, Marketo’s research revealed that 85% of B2B buyers look for companies that are serious about protecting their data and 81% look for a company that always conforms to best practice in handling their data and sensitive information.

It’s not simply content that’s king, it’s the experience. Getting a better understanding of your data means you get a better understanding of your customer. Having a clear picture of who your organisation will be dealing with in each step of the marketing and sales process is vital when tailoring your approach. For example, in today’s cycle, you tend to start working with younger generations and finish up with the older generations who are senior stakeholders in the business. Ask yourself, how do their backgrounds, world views and priorities differ and how can we engage them on a personal level?

We wrapped up the afternoon’s proceedings with Marty Lyon from Ascential. Marty explored how Marketing Automation could be used after you’ve converted a prospect into a customer to ensure that you retain their business. Ascential found that if a customer doesn’t start using your product within the first 14 days of them signing up, then it’s going to be very difficult to get them to carry on in the long-term – so how can you encourage this initial adoption?

Layering Marketing Automation into your customer lifecycle ensures that your MarTech stack is doing the work you need it to if you’re to retain your customers. Similar to CleverTouch’s work with Fujitsu, each stage of the customer lifecycle informs the next. Ascential utilised the onboarding process to gather more data on the customer’s needs, interests and behaviours which would ultimately inform the newsletters that they received. What a customer says they do and what they actually do can be wildly different and so, in monitoring their behaviour online, the correspondence (built and tailored by Marketing Automation) truly reflected what they engaged with.

The results truly spoke for themselves. After integrating this method, 20% of customers who had zero usage of the product were engaging with the bespoke content – a figure that usually lies between 3-5%. For Ascential, the key is in embedding this content as part of the daily workflow rather than it being a newsletter that customers would read on their lunchbreak.

Thanks again to our speakers and all of those who came along to Wellcome Collection for an afternoon of valuable Marketing Automation and Customer Experience insight.

On 16th July we are running a follow up Technical Workshop to help you optimise Marketo to improve Customer Experience. You can find out more and register here.