Why Personalization Matters

Companies are facing a challenging time today wrestling with the requirement to personalize communications and offers.  What’s more, personalization is about much more than segmentation, it’s about calibrating offers to a level of detail only achieved by understanding the consumer’s mindset and behavior at the point in time when interacting with your brand. Three articles from MarketingProfs.com discuss personalization from the challenge of accomplishing real time personalization to how to implement radical personalization and the challenges of personalization in digital marketing. Enjoy! Marketers Struggling With Real-Time Personalization Understanding the Five Pillars of Radical Personalization Marketers’ Biggest Obstacles to Effective Personalization   Tell Me What You Think! DBMCatalyst

Who Owns the Sale?

Who hasn’t been in the middle of the great “controversy” about whether Marketing or Sales owns a sale which arises as a result of a marketing campaign?  Moreover, how much of the sale can be attributed to each sales or marketing channel?  And don’t even bring up which inbound/outbound channel tipped in the sale…..

I recently read an article “Defendable Multichannel Sales Attribution“, written by Tom Reid at the Hacker Group, which deftly explains the core issues.  I mostly agree with his points, more on that in a bit, and it’s worth the read.  Particularly so because he stresses the necessity of good data, test & control and the establishment of business rules for channel attribution.

I won’t kid you, it’s hard to pull off multichannel attribution primarily because success hinges on the integration of competing departmental/units under pressure to achieve their own KPIs.  Hey, the technology (database) is easy comparatively. To summarize, he asserts that there are three approaches to sales attribution:

  • Rules-based: credit (the sale) is attributed to whomever drives the last touch (sometimes the first)
  • Contribution: all participating channels receive mention and even a weighting of their contribution and/or a proportion of the sale
  • Statistical modeling:  this isn’t detailed but could lean towards multivariate testing of several types which look to identify the relative impact of channel, content, timing, frequency, etc. of each of the overall campaign components

While I don’t strictly agree that statistical modeling is always necessary, Reid lays out the necessary data and design components needed as input.  Those inputs alone will enable quite satisfactory, rich analytics which will allow you to assess your current campaign, attribute proper channel impacts and to trend or predict future success.

In my opinion both Marketing and Sales own (any given) the “Sale”  but each must be given proper defensible attribution.

Let Me Know What You Think!

Ann McCartan, DBMCatalyst.com

How “big” is Big Data?

In todays article “CMOs declare 2013 the Year of Digital“, survey data show that CMOs are increasingly frustrated by the lack of true measurement for marketing initiatives, especially digital ones.  While the article focuses mainly on the need for more innovation, strategy and effectiveness of digital presence and programs, they also cite a push from their CEOs:  ‘Listen, customer preference is controlling the switch, so come to me with accurate measurement, give me visibility into the marketing spend.”  And they claim to be “charging” into Big Data.  So what is Big Data, what impact can we expect to see and, how big is it really?


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Intelligent Targeting

By now it seems clear that matching product or service offers to the consumers who need them, want them and are ready to purchase is the best possible marketing practice.  This is targeting, pure and simple.  Among the many goals of target marketing, efficient use of resources is one of the most important, especially if you are a small or medium sized business – with limited marketing funds and few marketing staff.  You’ve got the product and services ready to go, now who are the right audiences or segments to match up with?  Let’s see how customer analysis can help.

Customer analysis can be applied to answer many different questions.  Depending on what data you have on your customer – from demographic, geographic, firmographic to transactional and behavioral – you can understand what makes customer different or the same and most of all, what motivates their purchases.  As a small or midsized company, SMB, you might not possess all of that data but if you are able to group your customers into some type of business category and match purchases against them, you can accomplish intelligent targeting for your offers.
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Multi-channel Marketing Integration is Vital: 3

But How Do You Actually Get There? Part 3

As I’ve been discussing in the post series, “Multi-channel Marketing Integration is a Vital Start But How Do You Actually Get There? Part 1”,  knowing what to do is a start but if you are a small to medium business, or a small department in a large company, with limited staff or technology, how do you implement what could be a complex eco-system?

Again, Here’s the pitch:

From search to social, customers are interacting with your brand across a variety of channels, most likely created by many different people, in many different departments. However, chances are your customer thinks of your brand as just one entity, purchasing across channels, oblivious to your internal structure and processes. Providing a consistent message and customer experience is critical, so savvy marketers are optimizing campaigns through automated marketing programs and integrated data strategies.”

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Let’s put the Data back in Database Marketing

In the last year I’ve had numerous opportunities to explain what I do…and explain and explain…mostly to people who are involved in some aspect of marketing but not database marketing specifically.  To a person, when I’ve said “database marketing” they’ve said “oh you work with computers (database.)”   Well, I do some of my work through a database but that’s not the essential point.   And then, as you can imagine, the conversation has veered off into technology….

Technology may be the enabler, and clearly the database is key, but the data are paramount.  Database marketing is about the collection and application of data – about the customer and the prospect.   Wikipedia, an eminently detailed reference describes it like this:  “…Database marketing emphasizes the use of statistical techniques to develop models of customer behavior, which are then used to select customers for communications…”  [Read more…]

If Your Marketing Automation budget got an extra $10,000…

Recently I got into a conversation about incremental budget and basically how to optimize marketing automation with a shot of cash.

My reply was to spend the additional funds on improving the data, specifically, data enhancement. This is the addition or overlay of elements that describe the prospect or customer fully, such as demographics/firmographics, psychographics (attitudes, lifestyles) and most importantly behaviors. These elements are the basis for segmenting the consumer into groups such as best customers/prospects, most likely to upgrade or purchase additional products/services as well as for the creation of predictive models. [Read more…]

Building Customer Insight

I didn’t write the article I’m going to present, but I could have.  Which is not to compare or detract from Joseph M. DeCosmo’s wonderfully concise “survey course” in using customer insights to target relevant messages to the most receptive customers or prospects.  The Goal: make money from your customer data, right?

I could have written it because I have experienced every step along the path he describes both as an employee of or consultant to large corporations who have decided that customer data is the key to relevant marketing.   [Read more…]

Customer Loyalty: Are We Overlooking a Key Factor?

Do we really understand what drives a customer’s loyalty?  How often is customer service measured and factored into the “loyalty” equation, as well as the calculation of a customer’s life time value?

Today I read a post  “A lesson from LeBron James for loyalty marketers” cautioning brands to remember that today’s program offerings, promotions and selections – though inspiring multiple purchases and trips – may become less relevant to customers tomorrow.  In short, loyalty ain’t what it used to be and and marketers need to be ever vigilant to changes in customer profiles that indicate swings in a competitor’s direction. If you can detect when customers’ loyalty shifts, you’re ahead of the game. [Read more…]

B2B Segmentation: Which are the relevant behaviors?

Just the other day in my post,  “Digging Into Customer Behavior” , I listed some of the behaviors that appear to indicate strong purchase intent or seriousness and also mentioned that each one can have a different impact depending on the true interest of the Visitor.

So, which of the behaviors is indicative of an intent to Convert?  How do you assign importance or ranking?

Behaviors such as attending Webinars, downloading White Papers, Site Surfing and Contact Requests are all observed behavior but not always clear indications of intent to purchase.  For example, what is the value of a White Paper Download?  Some companies require contact information as a prerequisite for the download, while others believe the papers should be freely given?  I hate to tell you the number of calls I’ve received after providing my company information to download!!!  In fact I had no intention to purchase, I was just curious. [Read more…]