Latest Digital Trends and Business Transformation Stories from the Middle East

How Does the Data Economy Drive the Experience Economy?

Amanda St L Jobbins
SVP, Marketing & Digital Demand Generation, EMEA & JAPAC

The term ‘Experience Economy’ was actually coined way back in 1998. B. Joseph Pine II and James H. Gilmore needed a way to describe the shift from selling products and services to creating memorable events for customers. But it would be twenty years before the Experience Economy really took off. Why?

Because people now expect personalised experiences, thanks to the growth of the digital world. And it’s only recently that marketers have gained the data and computing power to deliver them.

Just 10 years ago, the success of Spotify, Netflix and other service-based businesses wasn’t possible. These companies haven’t rocketed to success because they offer something new –music and video streaming has been around for years. What they have done is set themselves apart by delivering an experience built entirely around customer understanding.

If personalised experiences are about connecting data, then data is the building block of the Experience Economy. Many marketing leaders are gaining an edge over the competition by harnessing data and using it to find new, innovative ways to appeal to their audience. 

Personalisation is the new normal

Marketers are rethinking the way they measure success. KPIs are shifting from short-term objectives (like reach) to long term goals, like customer satisfaction and retention. Data quality is important too, as the best customer experiences are often built on reliable, real-time information, shared smoothly between different systems.

The Economist gives us a good example of this. The publication adopted Oracle Marketing Cloud to shift from mass communication to more tailored, one-to-one interactions. It used data to personalise the customer experience across channels, managing to increase its brand awareness by 64% in the US – and its consideration by 22% in both the US and UK. 

Meanwhile, in India, Adidas is using customer data to deliver great cross-channel campaigns. Using Marketing Cloud, the sports heavyweight now has more consistency across its marketing channels, helping it to better engage with audiences no matter the channel they use.

The journey is worth the effort

These companies are already taking a data-driven approach to thrive in the Experience Economy. But many are just getting started. Plenty of marketers know they need to use data to improve their campaigns, but the volume and variety of data they collect is daunting. Plus they may have old systems and growing pressure to deliver on multiple fronts at the same time. They don’t feel they have the time or capabilities to take advantage of the goldmine they know they’re sitting on.

Putting an innovation strategy in place can be an ideal starting point. Those companies that do tend to see a spike in their ability to innovate and delight customers. Our research reveals that 68% of marketing decision-makers say disruptive innovation – including enhancements to the customer experience – plays a significant role in their organisation. And of these, 69% report significant or strong growth.

We’ve seen a clear correlation between data-driven approaches and customer success. Of course, that doesn’t mean it’s easy to create an environment where data and innovation work together for better customer experiences. But those businesses that take up the challenge can quickly set themselves apart.

Read our report to learn more about how data is fuelling today’s Experience Economy, and see how an innovation strategy can help you thrive in the era of mass personalisation.

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