The fight for customer loyalty is a battle being fought by companies everywhere — so how do you actually win? It’s actually pretty simple: through a thoughtful customer experience strategy. We’ve all heard it before: deliver the right message, at the right time, to the right person. I recently attended MarTech Conference full of marketing technologists and leaders, and let me tell you — CX is all the buzz. Here’s what you need to be thinking about:
- Cognitive Marketing
There’s a real interest in AI (artificial, assisted, augmented intelligence) driving the customer experience. I don’t think we’re quite at the I, Robot level yet, but it’s going to change the way brands interact with customers. It will be accomplished not only through deep analysis and data science, but also in real-time analysis and orchestration across channels. While the implementation sounds like something very large (and very cumbersome), the idea behind it is simple and can be broken down into four initiatives:
- Understand (Take in all context)
- Reason (Hypothesize and establish certainty)
- Learn (Do it, win, fail)
- Exploit (Scale)
We’re far beyond updating ads due to upcoming weather patterns. We’re talking about orchestrating a cross-channel experience in the moment. This requires computing power and data that seemed like science fiction fantasy, but now is reality. Imagine, a customer is ACTION and your brand serves up MARKETING. Friends, this is all happening now.
- Data Lakes
Having a Data Lake (a raw data storage system) as the engine that powers cross-channel orchestration isn’t just the holy grail, it’s table stakes. You need it as users now expect to have a personalized experience from beginning to end. They allow for more strategic initiatives to be executed, which elevates the overall customer experience from “Good” to “Great”. Folks, it’s time to let go of the old ways and move onto new methods of communicating to our customers.
Data protection. Doc Searls gave a great keynote about how privacy and the GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) will affect Europe and the unavoidable anxiety over that regulation being adopted in North America. However, the anxiety of not knowing who we are talking to is a bit unfounded. As with every big change, there will be growing pains in the digital ecosystem that cause marketers to go into a reactionary frenzy. But, there’s also opportunity.
Rather than thinking solely about your business objectives/activities/stages, shift your thinking to your customer’s journey. This doesn’t require terabytes of information about each user.