digital marketing further automates customer interactions, it will become even
more imperative that technology partners and ecosystem re-think their strategy
for how their services and products can reshape the customer experience. Just
because marketers can automate something doesn’t necessarily mean they will
deliver a great experience, and research indicates they need the help.
to a recent survey by Aberdeen, 96% of chief
marketing officers (CMOs) are not satisfied with their ability to deliver
Another by eConsultancy found that only 12% believe
their marketing is real-time enough to keep up with customer needs.
who want to focus on marketing services can help enterprises address this
challenge. And they can do so with a focus on Adaptive Marketing. My definition
of Adaptive Marketing is the use of data, technology, and processes to build
customer experiences that evolve instantly based on the behaviors, interests
and needs of real people. The goal is to create a more malleable strategy for
engaging customers across channels. Adaptive Marketing assumes that customers
take non-linear paths in their journeys. Rather than try to guess those paths –
or automate them into hypothetical journeys no one follows – companies should
let customers dictate their own path and have a system that adjusts quickly and
intelligently for them on the fly.
can partners engage with marketers to deliver a strategy for adaptive
1. Help Marketing Teams Compartmentalize the Data They Have
so many buzzwords like “big data” and others, it’s tempting to try and first
address customer experience issues with algorithms and data modeling. But from
a strategy perspective, I’d suggest you first start by understanding what data
types a marketer currently has available today. A couple examples include:
- Customer preferences
What data do they have about products, services or topics their customer has
professed interests in?
- Known customer
behaviors and events.
What events can they track? How
real-time is their ability to track them? An example could be when a consumer
adds a product to a shopping cart on a commerce site, or when a B2B customer
downloads a whitepaper or registers for a webinar.
- Anonymous behaviors. What data do they have
available about more anonymous interactions? This could be visitor data on their
website, or if you use a data management platform, data about their audience
engagement with digital advertising channels.
2. Work Towards One Canvas That Removes Channel Silos
now interact across a multitude of channels, including display advertising,
email, mobile, social and web. Adaptive Marketing requires that there is
cohesion between these channels. Unfortunately, most enterprises today still
handle the execution of their marketing on these channels with applications
internally that are isolated from one another. So as they message to customers,
they do so with minimal to no awareness that another channel might be reaching
them at the same time.
way you can address this challenge with marketing clients is by working with their
internal stakeholders to agree on one system-of-record – or what we like to
call a canvas – to manage their customer interactions in one place. It won’t be
easy to do, and it also is not a CRM system that manages this from a process
perspective. CRM systems lack insight into many of the anonymous behaviors that
customers perform across key marketing channels, such as display advertising.
make this change easier, you can emphasize that the centralize canvas itself
doesn’t need to replace all of the marketing applications clients have today.
They can still run key aspects of marketing execution in the background, but
the governance around what interactions get orchestrated should be centralized.
3. Test; Don’t Just Guess
you can help marketers test the interactions that they’re managing to help them
be more adaptive to customer behavior. A/B testing can be a place to start, but
it is very binary in terms of choosing the right experience for each customer.
As time goes on, you can add multivariate testing and other more sophisticated
mechanisms that optimize the experience based on customer behavior, propensity
these out with your clients, and see if you can take the first step towards an
Adaptive Marketing strategy.
Chris Lynch - Head of Product &
Industry Marketing for Oracle Marketing Cloud