With endless budget, a scattershot, see-if-it-sticks marketing strategy is easy to pull off. But it’s also a waste of resources, and it opens up a critical area of vulnerability for your brand: your customers can begin to leave you, en masse, for a company more invested in the core ‘why’, ‘how’ and ‘when’ behind delivering them what they really want and need.
To paraphrase Mark Wheatley in the Conversation Engine, consistency is crucial — and there’s no greater red thread for consistency across customer interaction points than the data they willingly give you at critical points during your relationship. The key here is to hold accurate conversations with customers on an individual basis — but by the million.
Impossible? It can be done, and with the information you already have. We’re talking about customer data — that’s call center and purchase history, previous service interactions, and login information — as a basis for building superior customer experiences that will stand the test of time and deliver ROI. This baseline in quality and accuracy wins every time over difficult-to-trace 3rd-party data (which shouldn’t be used as a primary driver of customer outreach, but can be valuable as support to this rich core of direct data).
To help you get inspired, we’ve plucked some of the finest customer data tricks from companies we work with that are shaping the future of customer experience ROI.
Recognition-and-recall is one of the best tricks for creating meaningful customer interactions. And for current customers, that means understanding who they are and what they want — whether they’re on your website or they glimpse your ad while scrolling through the morning news.
Imagine being able to offer a current customer the perfect upsell product at exactly the right touchpoint for him. And then to be able to offer a curious browser on the verge of becoming a customer an offer specifically geared towards newbies.
Making the distinction between loyal customers and those on the verge of conversion is a basic but widely overlooked principle. Having (and knowing how to activate) this information translates into quick-win customer journeys that reduce unnecessary ad spend on existing customers and perfectly nurture prospects.
Another positive side effect of differentiating between customers and prospects is the ability to reward people appropriately at the right stage of their journey with your company. You can do this by understanding at which moments they need you, and then by being there in a connected series of ways that will make them smile — or at least mitigate losing them at a critical moment.
Think about a customer who is trying to find specific information (potentially 83% of your website visitors). They're probably on your FAQ page, trying to understand how to cancel an existing booking or log a service request. They actually need validation from a real person, though, and they really don't want to waste time exploring every possible option and eventuality. They don't find what they're looking for, so they give your call center a ring.
Normally, they would have to go through an arduous response tree at this stage (not unlike the FAQ), however, because they're already a loyal customer of yours and were logged into their account when they were browsing your website, they are able to skip the call tree altogether and are connected directly to a friendly service assistant who has all neccessary information at hand. Your customer's question is answered swiftly, and your agent even offers a little incentive to spike their loyalty during a time of doubt.
Here, you have removed the risk of a frustrated customer churning for a service that cares more about their inquiry. Because you knew exactly what they wanted to ask, you were able to quickly provide a clear answer and a positive customer experience.
No one needs (or wants) to read another blog post about the GDPR. But what has become clear in the past months is the value exchange that data can create when it’s given directly and earned well. This is the currency of customer data that has been too often overlooked and has now been re-positioned at the core of great performance marketing, with great customer experience to match.
Instead of cobbling together guesswork on whether or not someone is in the market for a mortgage based on the fact they clicked on a housing ad in the last seven months, wouldn't you rather know that they are because they told you? And what if you could then serve them a set of interactions that mirror both their expectations of your company and the trust they have handed over alongside their data?
Knowing what your customer wants and acting on that need or desire helps you reinforce a relationship of trust. It demonstrates that you're using the valuable data they share with you to help them, and treating it with the care and respect it deserves.
The beauty of using customer data as the central point of interaction is that you can also use it as a solid reference for your customer acquisition strategy. Instead of solely relying on buying audiences or bidding on someone else’s customer base, you can match your quality set of interactions and conversations with attributes that really match those who love your product or service. You can create exact-match lookalikes right beside the origins of your most valuable assets.
This not only means you are delivering value to those you know care — but that they are much more likely to reward you for matching their intent with consistent, life-long conversions that see you exceeding your KPIs with a sky-high margin.