Customer Journey

Brands and the Data Driven Customer Journey: Hop On or Become Prey

These days, marketing strategy has become more about understanding and meeting customer needs and less about broadcasting a sales pitch. An emphasis on the customer journey, along with segmentation and customer personas, have all increased the targeting of marketing and sales to specific customer groups. Consumers have learned to ignore blatant sales pitches and instead are engaging with brands that provide relevant content. Keeping up with your competitors means delivering that targeted customer experience on a regular basis through customer-focused campaigns and real-time relevant marketing materials.


The Basis and Importance of a Data-Driven Customer Experience


A consistent customer journey that effectively meets customer needs in a way that inspires sales and loyalty must be backed by accurate information on your customers’ unique interests, pain points and deciding factors when the time comes to make a purchase. This is what makes a data-driven customer experience so important to your brand’s success.


The data-based approach emphasizes a deep understanding of your customers that is built on concrete information. That means everything—from your segmentation to the exact steps your buyers take from the first touchpoint to that final purchase decision—is based on actual statistics. Data brings a great deal of value to your marketing and sales strategies, from identifying an accurate customer journey to finding unexpected insights that increase your understanding of your customers, all so you can deliver a more personalized experience.


Best Practices for a Data-Driven Customer Experience


While the availability of the kind of data this strategy requires is relatively new, brands are already seeing success in applying big data insights to improve the customer journey. These organizations demonstrate some of the best practices for using data to deliver a truly personalized experience.


1. Drive Each Customer Touchpoint with Data


A data-driven customer experience takes the information you know about your audience, both leads and customers, and applies it to each stage in the customer journey. Some of the most important interactions with customers come at the very beginning of their journey—but a poor experience at any stage will turn them away. Amazon is just one example of a brand that expertly employs data to deliver highly personalized product recommendations, video recommendations and much more.


2. Dig Into the Deeper Details


Understanding the outside factors that influence customer decisions are another advantage that data-driven marketing can provide to you. This can involve incorporating outside data to further enhance the customer experience—or acquiring that outside data. IBM’s surprising recent purchase of The Weather Channel was designed to provide incredibly local weather data to their clients, who can use it to better understand their customers’ behavior.


3. Use Hyper-Targeted Campaigns Based on Data


The closer your campaigns and marketing materials match your customers’ needs, the more these pieces will resonate with them—resulting in more sales. A data-driven customer experience has the power to increase the level of targeting you can apply, from email campaigns to landing pages. According to digital marketing executive Tom Caulton, ‘brands often succeed… when they give customers branded content they believe is just for them.’


Technology and the Data-Driven Experience


The competition for customers is only getting more complex and fierce—and if your brand is going to succeed, data needs to be part of your strategy. In fact, to truly deliver a data-driven customer journey, your organization will need to assume the role of a tech company in that you need to use digital tools that will give you access to deep data and insights.


There are great benefits to be found in using data to enhance your customer’s journey—from increased sales to improved customer loyalty and beyond. The more personalized experience you provide will set your brand and products or services ahead of the competition.


December 4, 2017


Marketing, Performance