Digital marketers have an evolving arsenal of tools and technologies at their disposal to glean business intelligence, create targeted messages and produce stellar digital experiences -- whether online or in a retail outlet.
Biometric facial recognition, digital signage and customized displayed information are being used to better define the needs of customers, personalize the customer experience and increase brand awareness, loyalty and sales.
If done right, real time marketing can create an integrated experience across online, mobile and in-person channels as well as allow for a more personalized customer experience based on business intelligence. It can also educate and assist customers to make more informed purchasing decisions.
1. Create a high value self-service model
Banks, airports, public transportation and other industries understand the value of giving patrons or customers access to a free mobile hot-spot. This is a high value service that gives the organization additional intelligence on the individual that has logged onto the network and also makes that person a viable candidate for real time marketing, whether through targeted ads on their mobile device or dynamic digital displays that surround the area where the WiFi network is accessed.
2. Use geotargeting
Mobile devices have completely transformed how marketers across all industries collect data on and engage with their audience for more targeted marketing initiatives. BLE-beacons now allow marketers to deliver specific content to any individual for a personalized, one-to-one experience.
A recent report from Business Insider Intelligence showed that in store retail and offline payments are in the first wave of beacon applications. Being able to communicate directly with customers based on their geographic proximity is a pretty powerful real time marketing tool. Tapping into the power of geomarketing, which requires customers or patrons to have the mobile app on their phone, should be a key strategy for marketers. The first step would be a push for adoption of their mobile app to enable related strategies.
3. Integrate business intelligence into the visual experience
Marketers can use business intelligence gleaned from their CRM systems to tailor the experience in store and create a more personalized experience on mobile devices while waiting in line or on digital signage displays throughout the store triggered by beacons.
More targeted information will help customers make more informed purchasing decisions and create a personalized experience based on demographic intelligence that is consistent and cohesive across all digital channels. A 2014 survey of more than 2,500 digital marketing executives by ExactTarget found that their two top priorities are driving increased conversion rates (47 percent) and increasing and improving brand awareness (46 percent).
4. Demonstrate your value proposition
Digital natives will eventually become the majority of the population, and marketers need to understand now how to engage them. Paper does not register with digital natives. Privacy concerns related to information sharing and use of GPS information are not a concern for this generation as long as there is a strong enough value to be gained for the trade-off. That is the key -- create a value proposition -- use the information you have to create a more targeted customer experience.
According to a recent paper from DMI Mobile Enterprise Solutions,
Walmart recently found that, on average, its customers spend more than 20 minutes in its stores each time they visit. This is great. But the study also revealed that most of the time they leave without getting all the items on their shopping lists -- because they can’t find them. Walmart now has a mobile app that provides indoor search and navigation to help recoup those lost sales. Macy’s, Walgreens, and Home Depot have introduced similar solutions.”
Now that’s valuable.
5. Enhance the experience
While it may seem obvious, don’t forget that the customer experience is about creating a memorable and positive experience. Will biometric facial recognition make the customer experience better? Probably not, if it’s just gathering data that’s not being used for any purpose or end goal.
However, if that data is being used with a very specific type of customer experience in mind, for example, to greet a highly-valued customer by name when they enter a boutique store or to educate a sales representative that someone who is expecting a package has arrived, then the customer experience can really be impacted. Marketers must always keep the end goal of the experience they want to create in mind and then work from there to determine the business intelligence and the tools needed to create it.
Using real time marketing tools
In an increasingly digital world, marketers face a great challenge when it comes to tapping into the hearts, minds and wallets of their customers. However, by using the data available to them, they can begin to create a more intelligent, targeted and exceptional customer experience that will set their brand, their product or their offering apart from the rest.
There will always be a new technology to learn, but marketers who embrace and effectively use these tools will successfully create a superior experience for their customers.