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The Modern Marketing Blog covers the latest in marketing strategy, technology, and innovation.

Why it’s time to put the customer first

The mass marketing era is long gone. Today it’s all about relationships. To remain relevant and engage with customers across a range of channels, brands need to put the customer at the heart of all activity.

This was the key takeout from a research report we conducted with Econsultancy. The study found that only a quarter (26 percent) of Asia Pacific businesses are very committed to relationship marketing. This is despite recognising the long-term business benefits of the approach, with 60 percent agreeing it is cheaper to retain existing customers rather than obtain new ones. So what’s the challenge? What’s holding marketers back from being the best they can be?

The challenge

When marketers were asked about the factors preventing them from committing to relationship marketing, four in ten (38 percent) cited a lack of team knowledge and experience and 24 percent didn’t have sufficient resources.

Integration between specific digital and offline marketing disciplines also continues to be a stumbling block, with a third (34 percent) describing their digital efforts as ‘very integrated’ with their broader marketing strategy.

Breaking through the barriers

Marketers need to move with the times. Instead of viewing their strategy as a bunch of siloed campaigns, they need to recognise activity as a set of related interactions, that when added together across channels and time, makes up an individualised customer experience – a vision we’ve coined ‘Marketing Orchestration.’

Embracing Marketing Orchestration

Marketing Orchestration is a practice that extends to a brand’s overall marketing plan and organisational structure not just the technology they use. Responsys customers in Asia Pacific and around the world are already benefiting from this approach and are delivering millions of unique experiences. For example, Peter Kafka, Customer Communications Manager at Vodafone said that the company's brand strategy is all about having a one-to-one customer conversation and that they're using Responsys to engage in a "real dialogue with their customers, that has a personal touch." Hear more from Peter in the video below.

Today, consumers need to be taken on a journey across all the channels they use, which when combined delivers them with their own personalised experience. Those who fail to transform their strategies to foster long-term loyalty with customers risk getting left behind by their savvier and more nimble competitors.

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