The Challenges CMO’S face today and how they are overcoming them

Chief Marketing Officers are investing both brain and brawn to attract new and retain the existing customers. The promiscuous nature of the digitally connected customers requires CMO’s are on their toes to attend and cater to rapidly changing demands and needs, personalised to individual tastes and liking.

Excerpts from an eMarketer report shared here lines out the top concerns of CMO’s and marketing professionals and how they are addressing their concerns.

Marketing Technology

If customers have become the focal point for a business, then marketing technology is the medium that diminishes the gap between the marketing department and the customer or focal point. On average 49% of companies are currently using Marketing automation. With more than half of B2B companies (55%) adopting the technology. An experian study points out finding a single view of the customer as the top challenge businesses face with technology. The study mentions 54 percent marketers are challenged with using technology to integrate real time customer data, 49 percent are challenged with integrating multiple data sources and technologies while 48 percent marketers find it challenging to access data from across the organisation. Rishi Dave, CMO, Dun and Bradstreet, explains how his company is facing the technology challenge. He says, ‘We’ve leveraged marketing technology to drive our overall growth strategy by focusing on three big things from a marketing standpoint. One was modernizing our brand and what we stood for. Another was changing our go-to-market strategy—we’ve shifted from just being product-focused to persona- and people-focused. The third piece was how to scale our growth and pipeline against that.That third piece is where marketing technology played a role in how we manage the process of demand generation, nurturing leads, generating pipelines, getting it to sales, leveraging our data to target the right customers, prioritizing the right accounts and executing the right programs against that.

Single View of customer

Customers are connecting with businesses through various channels such as smartphones, desktops, tablets and the growing phenomenon of internet connected wearables. They are using various touch points to establish communication it could be a website, call center or through the brick and mortar outlets. A single customer using different touchpoints and channels to connect expects the business to know who he is or identify him as one individual irrespective of the channels or touchpoints he chooses to connect through, expecting the same standard of service and personalisation. Businesses at their end are finding it tough to weave through a customer identity that interact through the many channels and touchpoints rendering them incapable of providing personalised services and content. Businesses that are able to align and get the single view of the customer are at an advantage. A survey by signal found only 6 percent marketers expressed capabilities of figuring a single view of customer. Marissa Tarleton, CMO, North America, Retailmenot says, ‘Ideally, consumers should have a consistent experience across a mobile site, desktop site and app, but each of these channels is unique. Obviously, there’s a difference in the screen size, but in apps, the experience is even more differentiated. Our app is more personalized than our mobile site due to the location technology we’ve invested in and the data we have from consumers. The content and offers are very similar, if not identical, to other channels, but the app might show more in-store content. Personalization is also a big differentiator. We narrow down the content and make sure it’s highly relevant.

Communicating through visuals

It is no secret content is largely getting consumed if it is served in video format. Humans consume visual content 60000 X faster than text, with 90 percent of information transmitted to the brain being visual. Another example that illustrates the success visual form has is the 8 billion views Facebook videos achieved late last year. Add to that the preference of millennials to consume video content, have the highest level of digital video penetration at 90 percent. Zazzle is an online marketplace that since 2005 has offered consumers the opportunity to personalize products ranging from coffee mugs to iPhone cases, skateboards to stationery. CMO, ZAZZLE, Nizzi Karai Renaud, explaining her strategy on how she approaches the digital market mentions, ‘We’ve made an investment in the visual nature of our site. Storytelling is a buzzword and a lot of people talk about it, but for millennials we found that the visual piece—honing our photography and creative assets—helped attract and convert millennials.

With identity being the centerpiece for marketers looking to invest in marketing technology to better understand and know their customers. Identity being the center pinning that can stitch a single view of the customer interacting from different channels and touchpoints, as well as the starting point to understand and serve customers personalised offerings. Marketers can be at an advantage enabling a customer identity management solution on and across their web properties. CIM not just enables registration through registration forms, that can be customised as per the need of the business, it also provides for the popular registration feature using existing social ids called social login. The process of registration yields valuable customer related data that is added upon through progressive data gathering to create a clear image of the customer overtime. Additionally identifying customers using their social ids to register or login becomes convenient as the social network provider shares customer related with the business with the customer’s consent. The hassle free integration of customer related data with marketing technology makes the task of integrations a cakewalk. Two of the major research institutions Gartner and Forrester have identified customer identity management as a modern day business imperative which can hugely benefit and improve efficiency of businesses.