Digital marketing has never been more important for the development of brands and / or the image of companies – but the connected world can be a strange and challenging environment for companies. This blog focuses on the movement of power to the customer side and the role of digital marketing.
In the past decade, the acceleration of the digital innovation has made a huge revolutionized change on the side of customer experience. Today people first gather information on the Internet, see ratings and compare prices. It is clear companies are beginning to understand the need to use digital marketing to keep up with the mind-set of the modern consumer, in what is also called the age of the customer. In both B-to-B and B-to-C the customer is in the driver’s seat. The question is: how do I get in the seat next to my potential customer?
“Going viral‘ is an expression you do not hear very often anymore. This is because the concept is ingrained in the digital world and has become too large to describe with a single expression. Nowadays we talk more about memes, signals, buzz, clickbait, trending posts, hashtags – and many more. However, the goal is still to spread content rapidly through the digital world and to present your brand on the internet. Digital marketing is not only your ground zero to find new leads, but also to increase loyalty of current customers. The challenge is to apply it successfully.
Of course it is good companies invest in digital technology to keep their customer experience as streamlined as possible. But companies that really want to take full advantage of all digital marketing has to offer, has to apply it as an integral whole of all business activities. How? By using omni- channel. Cross-channel and multi-channel focusses mainly on the use of the channels, omni-channel also focused on the brand experience of the customer.
The (potential) customer comes into contact with your brand through various touch points. Omni-channel makes sure the moment of contact, regardless of the channel, is a seamless and customized experience. This means appearance, tone of voice, content and perception are always and everywhere the same. In addition, the connection between the channels, like Google to Facebook, are increasingly important for page rankings and search engine optimization (SEO).
“Social signals” is a catch-all term used to everything people do on social media. In general, a large number of social signals is very healthy for a brand. It indicates many people are attracted to the content and get a sense of your company profile. Social signals are often used to assess how powerful a brand is. It is a convenient way to assess the effectiveness of certain campaigns, where these statistics should be part of the digital marketing strategy. Remember, in the digital world your brand is not only influenced by what you make, but also by what consumers do with it. Both are necessary to succeed in the connected world.
You can create an omni-channel strategy by using the following elements.
Create a persona based on your customer data. A persona is a model-user in which you make a specific profile of your customer. This provides a clear and consistent vision throughout the organization.
Make a quick scan, based on statistics, in which the current status of the online performances are described. Then you set the KPIs and other success factors in a measurement plan.
Nowadays potential customers interact through a wide range of touchpoints, like websites, email, apps, social media, stores, sms and call centers. The challenge is to organize the internal departments, based on the customer journey. Through all the touchpoints the service must be the same and in the most ideal situation the customer is always recognized.
A consistent experience, on any device and at any time, results in an optimal user experience and higher conversion rates. Hereby a responsive and optimized website, with a focus on mobile, should be leading. Make sure your online marketing tools are used properly. Make sure your target audience can find you at the right time and with the right content.
More and more (potential) customers want to be informed personally, seeking online advice / inspiration and always expect access to the relevant information, combined with excellent service. There is a clear shift from outbound to inbound, in which there must be continuous attention to make relevant content and to interact with customers. Try to encourage and inspire customers.
Marketing automation is responding relevant and attentive to customer behavior. This includes personalization of the information and providing an automated and targeted selection of content, offers and recommendations. Marketing automation provides digital profiles, creates effective campaigns and increases conversion.
Make sure you are only focusing on conversions, but also on customer satisfaction. Try to increase the loyalty of your customers. After all a regular customer is tremendously valuable.
Return on investment (ROI) makes room for Customer Lifetime Value (CLV). The concept describes the net profit per customer over a longer period. CLV is based on the past (number of purchases x amount), but intended for the future. It takes future purchasing frequency of customers into account and shows what can be spent per new and/or per existing customer. The CLV concept will increase the effectiveness of the marketing budget.
Investing in digital marketing is of course extremely important for increasing brand awareness and attracting new customers. Make sure it is applied in an effective way, based on statistics from the past, while moving in the same direction as your target group. Therefore use marketing automation, so you are visible and relevant at the right time. In addition, service and support are crucial in the whole process, because it helps you create a much higher customer value. On this level, in the age of the customer, you will win the heart of your (potential) customers!