3 Key Strategies for Engaging Your Customers

These days, marketers are overwhelmed, and for good reason. With customer expectations evolving and the market constantly shifting — such as the death of third-party cookies and the release of Apple’s iOS 15 updates — it’s becoming more and more necessary for marketers to adapt their strategies without skipping a beat. As fellow marketers, we understand this pressure, and we’re here to help.

In our latest webinar with CMSWireKarin Matthews, Senior Manager of Digital Marketing at Taubman, and Nathan Loveless, Vice President of Enterprise at Blueshift, explored how marketers are thinking about these challenges and finding solutions.

THE VALUE EXCHANGE OF DATA

Meaningful Data Is Effective Data

At the beginning of this conversation, Karin and Nathan discuss why it’s essential for marketers to be agile and data-driven when adapting their marketing strategies in response to market shifts. In Karin’s experience working at Taubman — which leases, manages, and owns shopping malls in the U.S. and Asia — her team has had to be extremely flexible over the past year and a half due to the way Covid has impacted the retail environment. She emphasizes that if you’re going to ask for personal data from customers (especially in a time when privacy is of great importance), it must be central to your strategy and provide value to the customer.

“Data needs to inform your strategy. There are two different types of data: performance data and customer data. On the one side, performance data is helping you identify what’s working, what’s not working, where there’s room for improvement, what efforts you should be prioritizing, etc. On the other end of that spectrum is the customer data that enables you to segment and personalize and really deliver that relevant customer experience. Marrying the two creates the opportunity to manage your customer expectations — and hopefully even exceed customer expectations.” – Karin Matthews, Senior Manager of Digital Marketing at Taubman

Ultimately, performance data and customer data go hand-in-hand, and they must be aligned to support an impactful marketing strategy. Instead of focusing efforts on one particular channel, look at where customers are engaging and meet them where they are to deliver what matters to them. Putting the customer at the center is foundational to seamless omnichannel marketing.

THE FIRST-PARTY DATA TAKEOVER

Acquiring and Nurturing Your Customers

When considering how to adapt and optimize your marketing strategy in response to the way customer experiences have rapidly changed, the breadth of your data is just as crucial as the size of your database itself. With first-party data taking its rightful place on the tech throne, marketers need to work harder to earn personal data from customers — and putting that hard-earned data to good use is key to retaining customers and cultivating brand loyalists in the long run.

Regarding retail in particular, capturing the attention of holiday shoppers is top of mind for ecommerce brands at this time of year. Three SmartHub Customer Data Platform (CDP) features that help marketers like you reach customers this holiday season are:

  • Engage Time Optimization – This helps you optimize individual send times for future behaviors that lead to revenue, rather than metrics like open rates.
  • Predictive Channel Engagement Scores – These scores help marketers autonomously select which channel is best for marketing to each customer by predicting the likelihood of a user engaging with a message on each channel.
  • AI-Powered Predictive Recommendations – These take the input of your catalog content, customer data, and customer interactions with your catalog and produce recommendations based on a number of algorithms.

With a SmartHub CDP, using AI marketing to acquire, nurture, and retain customers is just a few clicks away.

THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN OMNICHANNEL VS. MULTICHANNEL

Making the Shift to Customer-Centric Marketing

If you read our recent blog post, “5 Differences Between Omnichannel vs. Multichannel in Ecommerce,” you might be familiar with the differences between these similar-sounding but vastly different marketing approaches. As Karin articulates during the webinar, multichannel marketing is executing on multiple channels independently and in a siloed manner; omnichannel marketing is looking at the bigger picture and making sure customers are being engaged consistently across relevant channels. Pro tip: for more omnichannel insights, check out our Smart Guide to Omnichannel Campaigns.

“One of the big distinctions between omnichannel and multichannel is being more aligned with the customer than with the channel itself. If you’re thinking about content, it’s about asking ‘What does this person need?’ — regardless of how it gets there — not saying ‘I have a particular KPI associated with [one channel] specifically.” – Nathan Loveless, Vice President of Enterprise at Blueshift

When it comes to omnichannel marketing, developing an exceptional engagement strategy starts with looking at content from the customer’s point of view. By doing so, you’re able to provide a cohesive experience in every facet — including UI, UX, and in-person brand interactions. Instead of making customers take multiple isolated steps to connect with your brand, you can create more intentional and meaningful connections.

TL;DR

Marketing Begins and Ends with Customers

As your brand and countless others face challenges resulting from Covid, the death of third-party cookies, and the transient nature of organizational and departmental structures, it’s imperative to adopt a fresh strategic perspective in order to succeed. If you’re overwhelmed by all of the potential marketing avenues your brand can take to engage customers, you’re not alone. In fact, as marketers, we’re right there with you.

To cut through all of the industry noise, listen to who truly matters: your customers. After all, they’re what keeps a brand going. When you shift to an omnichannel marketing approach, your customers become the core of your business — and that’s exactly where they belong. To make that happen, your brand needs a best-of-breed customer data platform. Thankfully, Blueshift is here to help. With guidance and expertise from our team, along with resources and events like this webinar, you’re one step closer to marketing success.

Want to watch Karin and Nathan’s conversation on-demand now and uncover your own meaningful takeaways from “Connecting with Customers in an Ever Changing Environment”? Click here to access the webinar or keep scrolling to play it below. Then, contact one of our SmartHub CDP experts at Blueshift today to schedule a demo!

This webinar covers:

  • The impact of disconnected data on growth
  • How to approach a personalization strategy in a cookieless future
  • The role of omnichannel marketing in a marketer’s toolkit
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