With poor customer experiences costing brands upwards of $83 billion in 2016, it should come as no surprise that one of the primary use cases for marketing technology centers around developing a deep understanding of your customer’s journey.
Knowing where, when, and how potential clients engage with your brand enables you to develop campaigns designed to speak directly to your target audience. The impact of such personalized campaigns can be huge; according to Forrester, 77 percent of consumers have chosen, recommended, or paid more for a brand that offered a personalized experience.
With results like that, it is no wonder 85 percent of organizations are now using personalization as part of their marketing strategy.
The demand for more personalized experiences by consumers has influenced the direction and development of marketing technology. You need only to look at the hundreds of marketing technology vendors under the “Content & Experience” and “Social & Relationships” columns of Scott Brinkley’s Marketing Technology Landscape Supergraphic to understand how important cultivating a best-in-class customer experience is for today’s modern marketer. (For a truly eye-opening representation of how marketing technology has evolved, compare the 2017 graphic to this one from 2011.)
Born from this evolution of marketing technology is a new strategy for data analysis known as customer journey analytics. Forrester Research defines customer journey analytics as:
“An analytics practice that combines quantitative and qualitative data to analyze customer behaviors and motivations across touchpoints and over time to optimize customer interactions and predict future behavior.”
This post explores how marketing technology illuminates the customer journey, and how journey analytics can help you design impactful campaigns that enhance your customer’s experience with your brand.
The Role of Marketing Technology in Mapping the Customer Journey
With new tools and technologies becoming available literally every day, staying on top of current trends and use cases for marketing technology can be almost impossible. When it comes to how marketing technology influences your understanding of the customer journey, success comes more from leveraging the tools you already have in your tech stack, not necessarily investing in new ones.
Take your customer relationship management (CRM) software, for example. As you probably would have guessed, marketing is not the only team influencing the customer experience. Interactions between your target audience and members of your sales, customer success, and support teams all have an influence on the customer experience. Number and length of engagements between clients and these teams before making a purchase could be a significant data point in understanding your target audience, which is why data from your customer relationship management software brings such value to a marketer interested in evaluating customer journey analytics.
The same could be said for any of the essential components of your martech stack. Your content management system tells you the content types and topics that best resonate with your audience; your automation platform can help you connect the dots between certain marketing activities and action from your customers; your email and social media platforms highlight where and how customers engage with you outside of your website.
Again, customer journey analytics do not require significant investment in new marketing technology to glean insights (though, when the time does come to make an investment, there are plenty of cool tools out there that can help you take your strategy to the next level). To gain a comprehensive view of your customer journey, however, there is one tool you absolutely cannot do without.
Why You Need a Data Management System to Understand Customer Journey Analytics
The insights you extract from your CRM or automation tool or social media platform mean next to nothing on their own. Customer journey analytics is about creating a holistic view of how your customers engage with your brand. It is the aggregation of all these insights that actually helps you map the customer journey, not the insights on their own.
That is why a data management system like ReachForce is such a critical piece of marketing technology to have for customer journey analytics. Data management systems unify your data into a single platform, bringing all the customer journey insights from the other tools in your martech stack together to create a more comprehensive view of your customer journey.
Once you have those insights and a well-developed customer journey map, here is how those journey analytics can help you improve your customer experience.
#1. They help you create offers that resonate with your audience.
Knowing when, where, and how to present an offer to a target client is one of the biggest challenges faced by salespeople and marketers alike. Present an offer too early and you may scare your lead away. Present it too late and they may already be doing business with a competitor.
Customer journey analytics help you understand the exact point in the customer journey where you are most likely to convert a lead into a customer. Additionally, you will understand the type of offer that resonates with your leads and where to present that offer to increase visibility.
#2. They help you identify upsell opportunities with existing customers.
While lead generation is a key component of the customer journey, the road does not stop after a lead converts into a customer. In fact, modern marketers understand that increasing customer lifetime value has a much higher impact on company revenue that just constantly filling the sales funnel with new prospects. Customer journey analytics help marketers uncover triggers in your existing customer’s journey that may indicate they are ready for an upgrade or cross-selling pitch.
#3. They generate referrals.
Consumers love telling people when they have a great customer experience almost as much as when they have an awful one (see Yelp, Airbnb, and TripAdvisor as examples). A stellar customer experience is almost certain to bring some referral business your way. Eighty-three percent of consumers are willing to refer your business after a positive customer experience (however, only 29 percent actually do, so make sure you ask for the referral).
ReachForce helps marketers increase revenue contribution by solving some of their toughest data management problems. We understand the challenges of results-driven marketers and provide solutions to make initiatives like marketing automation, personalization, and predictive marketing better. Whether you have an acute pain to solve today or prefer to grow your capabilities over time, ReachForce can unify, clean, and enrich prospect and customer lifecycle data in your business, and do it at your own pace.