How to Execute a 360-Degree View of Customer with Integrated Data and Digital Marketing Platforms
by Shabana Arora Mar 23, 2017
All marketing and sales initiatives have the overriding purpose of converting a prospect into a customer. No wonder then, ‘customer are kings’ and as marketers you want them on your side. But, how can you be sure you have access to holistic information regarding all your prospects? Getting a clear view about a customer’s journey in the context of your product needs you to break free from siloed data and embrace an integrated approach to get a 360-degree view and integrate this with all your digital marketing campaigns.
Data when gathered from multiple touchpoints, where a customer interacts with your website, social media channels, video platforms, ad networks, and where your other online communities operate in serves as actionable inputs for marketers for lead conversions.
There have been ongoing discussions among marketing groups to join these dots for both existing and potential customers. But, the gap has not been bridged yet. 70% of leads fail to convert, because of lack of nurturing of the prospect. However, magic can be created by bringing in CRM and enterprise data management platform (DMP) together. These two worlds when in conjunction with each other has astonishing potentials to reach out to the right customers, at the right time, with the apt information.
Integrating the digital media channels
Building a 360-degree view essentially means using all possible touch points to bring a brand to the forefront, and making it visible through all potential channels to the consumer. It is a challenge that marketers have and answers through integration of various platforms.
News feeds in social media sites are great mediums to advertise your products and they have been gaining mind-boggling momentum over the past few years. Most often, products clicked or searched are not bought by an individual customer, but the search data is saved by Google which is later used for retargeting through other digital marketing players – a clear testimony how data collaboration from multiple sources can propel marketing campaigns.
Again, video marketing which is often described as the rising star in the marketing universe, relies heavily on the integration of data gathered from various internet giants. Facebook experienced a staggering growth in its video views from 4 billion a day to 8 billion, which itself is a great signature of the potential of videos as a marketing tool. Being easy on the brain and soothing to the eye, videos grab a user’s attention quite easily, while they are at their newsfeed. Those who educate themselves through online reviews and blogs prior to buying a product, are targeted with video adverts through social media. You can see a clear example of integration of different channels – newsfeed activities, or random searches on the web lays the foundation for rich video content, which again holds a huge potential to go viral through social media platforms.
Data gathered from various mediums, when consolidated, gives key insider view on a customer’s engagement with the product or service. Information related to the searches carried out, sites visited, posts followed and responded to, and videos viewed, act as valuable inputs to gain well-rounded insights into customer’s behavior.
While emails have proven to be the most effective outreach medium over the years, there are challenges of targeting prospects that ignore emails as well. With the click-through-rates, dropping, and only 5% open rates on promotional emails, it’s becoming more and more difficult to draw in prospects through emails and evaluating ROI is no more just through click and open rates. Though 95% remain in the business database as inactive customers, they can be targeted through other channels of your digital ecosystem, such as Twitter, Facebook, ad exchanges, and Google. Nurturing leads through multiple channels can ensure conversion in the long run.
When email marketing works in silos, there’s no context about the customer. When integrated with CRM, marketers can have a clear vision on which leads have potential and which still need nurturing. Incredible content can be provided through Twitter and YouTube to the ‘hot leads’ by the sales teams, and the ones that need nurturing can be worked on further by the marketing teams. Such detailed inputs can convert a stagnant database to the one that’s effective for marketing and sales to work on together and action at the appropriate times.
Steps to bring marketing and sales together on a 360-degree platform
Businesses need to integrate marketing and sales on a common platform that provides a 360-degree customer view. Here are some processes that can support this:
Leveraging Big Data Analytics: A 360-degree customer view often requires big data analytics, which essentially assimilates the enormous amounts of unstructured data available through various customer touchpoints be it social media channels, in-store and online behavior etc and unites these as a database. Existing connections can be strengthened by creating custom audiences, while new ones can be mapped onto these created profiles to predict prospect response. Combining the database of site visitors with that of their behavior on Facebook helps generate Custom Audiences.
Agree on definitions: Both marketing and sales teams need to agree on the goals set for generating prospects and converting them into leads, and test the same throughout a campaign. There needs to be consensus by both teams regarding what a sales-ready lead is, probably by assigning scores to each lead. This streamlines the processes, enabling the best prospects to be targeted, while nurturing the rest.
Collaborate on content: While a sales professional may not be the best author, they can support marketing by providing inputs on the areas to be covered in collaterals. Sales teams are in direct communications with prospects, and hence have a clearer idea regarding what form of content resonates better with prospects. Always remember, content is your face, the impression which a customer gets of you.
Extract the maximum from your CRM: Both marketing and sales teams should be working on a common CRM platform, so customer conversations are clearly visible to all stakeholders. Marketing can store information about all leads, while sales can flesh information out of the CRM to facilitate better sales performance.
MarTech comes handy: Not just CRM, several other martech tools integrate beautifully to offer marketing and sales a 360-degree view platform. These are handy to connect with customers and create compelling experiences by infusing marketing decisions with customer insights.
Work together to build communities on social media: On the social media front, marketing and sales should join hands to build, nurture and engage with common communities, and cross promotion of content can be facilitated through leading channels such as LinkedIn, Twitter, Google Plus, Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram.
Co-branding with partners is the new way: The power of collaboration cannot be stressed enough. Cross-pollinating with different brands and telling stories together is an outstanding way to leverage from each other’s communities and grow businesses – and this too should be ensured with marketing and sales being aligned. While marketing teams builds the actual stories, the sales can help identify the stories that need to be told to grab customer’s attention.
How businesses can benefit from a CRM integrated with marketing data
A lead when left alone remains unmoving, while a little bit of nurture makes it a sales-ready deal. Integrating marketing data with CRM helps in classifying leads based on their potential for conversion. The process enables targeting the correct group with customized and impeccable content.
Personalized messaging as opposed to email blasts works better for lead conversions. Messages with a personal touch, developed with a connecting tone have 14% click-through rates with a 10% conversion rate. Integrating your email marketing automation with your CRM helps you divide your database into groups based on factors like web engagement pattern, likes, and preferences. Handpicked customized messages can then be developed to target each group.
The marketing and sales teams must be on the same page to avoid gaps in customer conversations. While the sales team engages with a prospect only much after a prospect starts interacting with your product or service, buyers have essentially had intense discussions with the marketing team beforehand. Bringing the two on the same page needs an integration of the sales and marketing tools on a common platform, so that sales can have a clear view of the buyer’s journey, and the marketing in turn knows the leads that need more nurturing to convert. This approach, in turn, leads to improved campaigns generating better sales.
What marketers need to know
Content gives a voice to your brand, and hence is a key aid in driving traffic to your site. What you want to tell the world, is communicated through your content including video, blogs, and photographs. To ensure visitors are well-engaged with your site, you need to ensure an easily navigable site, with a good user experience, and equally responsive on all devices.
Social channels have immense potential to engage with customers, so figure out the best way to be searchable on them by studying the behavior with analytics-driven insights from other mediums. Use paid advertising as well as organic content to create your communities.
When a lead is converted
While we have seen, a 360-degree view of the prospects and customers is crucial for sales and marketing, does it end at that? What about after a lead is converted? Retaining customers in the long run is critical, and without a doubt customer service plays a pivotal role here. Best service can be offered with an integration of CRM and marketing data, as customer service departments will have access to the essential conversations and behaviors that took place in the journey of a lead becoming a customer. When customer history is available upfront, seamless customer service can act as a strong retention method, and customer loyalty for the brand. And, only a 360-degree organization-wide platform can facilitate this.
Know more about integrating a 360-degree view of your customer through an integrated platform at the Breakout Session on ‘A Journey to a 360° Platform for Marketing and Sales’ at the Oracle Modern Marketing Experience in Las Vegas on Wednesday, April 26 at 11:45 am. Speaker Amit Pandya, Corporate Vice President and Head of Digital Marketing at New York Life Insurance Company will discuss how as marketing and sales organizations of 21st century, firms and agencies often look for a platform that can produce a 360-degree view of the customer. And, platforms like Oracle Eloqua can truly deliver a holistic view by integrating with all digital channels: email, website, social, chat, ad networks, video platforms, webinar systems, and phone calls. See how all of this can come together and help marketing for static and dynamic segmentation, a truly automated multichannel nurture track, and exceptional lead scoring models – and for sales delivery, robust and relevant leads and 360-degree view in profiler with their CRM.
Modern Marketing Experience as part of Modern Customer Experience brings together Modern Marketers from around the globe for three days of captivating content, innovative best practices, and leading edge technology to help you deliver the best of your brand.
Join us in Las Vegas on April 25-27 and attend general sessions featuring customers and industry experts who will inspire you with best practices to pave your roadmap to greater marketing success. You can participate in intimate breakout sessions with marketing leaders and luminaries on topics that are important to you and gain fresh insights on creating innovative and compelling marketing strategies that result in actual ROI and revenue. Hear from leading brands across a variety of industries, segments, and specialties on their digital marketing success. Celebrate excellence in Modern Marketing at the annual Markie Awards where we recognize innovation in more than a dozen categories. Click here for more information.