With real fears about job security, the economy, and rising VAT consumers are making fewer impulse purchases; value is paramount and customers are less brand-loyal. But while this is a threat, it also provides an opportunity for savvy marketers.
Unfortunately, many marketing campaigns are high in creativity but low on personalisation, segmentation and automation, leading some to simply divide email lists into a few basic segments, based on simple attributes like gender and geography.
While this can often provide immediate, short-term results, to build lifetime value, marketers must deeply connect with consumers over time. It’s vital that brands know their audience and ensure the majority of messages they send are tailored to the individual, using language they recognise and that they arrive at times and dates that fit into the consumer’s lifestyle.
Creating valuable online customer relationships requires that marketers sort and manage the vast amounts of information being gathered and housed in their customer databases. By leveraging a combination of email and marketing automation tools, marketers can create powerful and highly relevant campaigns that address both short-term marketing goals and long-term nurturing strategies.
By leveraging proven email and marketing automation solutions to make these connections and maintain engagement, marketers can more effectively convey their brand proposition and demonstrate their value. And, it is not as difficult or time consuming as it might appear.
Of course, being a marketer isn’t always easy. It’s no longer enough to segment customer and prospect databases by list-centric attributes alone. To be truly relevant, build your customer base and retain their loyalty, all communication must be designed around each customer’s needs, interests, behaviours, level of engagement and readiness to buy.
It is only by getting to know their audience and developing automated and highly targeted campaigns, that marketers will be better able to turn potential customers into paying customers and the new holy grail of brand ambassadors.
Loren McDonald is vice-president of industry relations at Silverpop