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How to achieve successful acquisition in the age of the digital customer

Consumer Marketing Data

Joel blog imageOne of the key trends coming out of 2015 was the increased prioritisation of seamless customer experience by brands that recognise its significance in the age of the customer. With the emergence of the new digital customer, businesses are beginning to embrace and invest in digital transformation strategies that serve new digital audiences who have higher expectations of their brand relationships.

We have identified five challenges and skills which brands need to practice to achieve successful acquisition in the age of the digital customer.

1. Customer experience begins with customer acquisition

The digital customer is data savvy and is a lot more conscious about how they are contacted. Invasive outbound strategies aren’t always best received and so the best customer experiences begin with an inbound journey that is personalised around individual customer requirements.

The power of the data that an organisation holds, along with the right insight and profiling, enables a much more personalised approach to customer communication throughout the acquisition and retention journey.  With the right engagement planning, companies can achieve significant conversion uplift.

By understanding digital browsing habits, organisations can create inbound customer journeys that connect consumers to the brands, products and services they are interested in, creating an easy path to purchase while also factoring in generational engagement preferences to improve campaign effectiveness.

2. Reduce your risk with performance-based acquisition models

In a world where the next challenger brand may be around the corner marketing budgets must be utilised as effectively as possible to ensure a strong return on investment and reduction of risk.

The enhanced analytics available today allow for suppliers of marketing services to take on more of the risk; and through the development of close relationships organisations can benefit from performance based commercial models that mean an organisation only pays for the leads or customers brought into conversation with a business or brand.

3. Treat your customers fairly with compliant acquisition strategies

The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) is championing consumer engagement strategies and penalising those carrying out large scale, invasive communications that do not represent good practice. It is now more important than ever that organisations ensure that their acquisition strategy meets the ICO’s guidance on direct marketing when buying data for electronic prospecting by telephone, email and SMS and, above all that, is in line with consumer expectations of being contacted by you and through that channel.

Direct marketing practices must constantly evolve and what has been common practice in the past is no longer regarded as good practice today. In 2016, electronic marketing acquisition must use data that is opted in at sector and channel level, where consent was recently provided per the ICO Guidance on Direct Marketing, to ensure that consumers are empowered to make more informed choices about being contacted by an organisation or brand via their preferred channels of communication and sectors of interest.

Organisations supporting their outbound strategies with a wide spread inbound marketing strategy across the online lead generation space can gain both new customers and the data of potential new customers to fuel their acquisition efforts.

Callcredit Information Group Strengthens its Requirements as to its Fair Processing Notices & Privacy Policies for Marketing Data

4. Support your customer journeys by curating their customer journey

Taking time to understand the key channels through which a brand’s particular customer will seek out information on their product or service and analysing their appearance across the digital space will provide brands with vital insights to fuel their digital strategy.

An organisation’s reputation management and the distribution of a strong content strategy are crucial to ensure that it has a positive online share of voice and that a customer’s research results in a sale.  Supporting the conversion journey with retargeting across traditional digital and social channels is a quick win that can drive significantly enhanced customer conversion by keeping your brand front of mind during the new digital customer journey.

5. Boost the effectiveness of your spend with optimisation strategies across your customer journey

Forecasts predict that the big data market will grow by up to 25% by 2019. With the advancements in easy to use analytics technology making it more accessible to smaller organisations, attribution modelling and the optimisation of the customer journey is becoming democratised.

However with the millennial shift towards more visual and engaging communications, paired with mobile browsing advancing well ahead of desktop, there are still a wealth of bad digital experiences and journeys that are hindering sales.

Through the delivery of analytics across the new digital customer journey and the application of conversion optimisation strategies, brands can supercharge their sales while maximising their marketing spend.

In a world of increasing consumer expectations, companies must respond to the increasing customer demand from their brand relationships with engagement strategies that are not only thoughtful but also appropriate, targeted and personalised.

The evolving digital customer demands a more engaging experience and the rapid advancements in technology and its availability mean that brands have the opportunity to leverage the wealth of data that they hold to develop world class customer experiences that drive acquisition, retention and conversion.

To enable this however, and benefit from the significant potential gains, an organisation must prioritise investment in the housing, analysis, profiling and application of its data and improve the availability of data driven engagement resources to its marketing and communications departments, improving the data maturity of their organisations.

Author: Joel Spence

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