Customer intelligence: navigating the landscape of Martech

Author: Sasha Baez
Posting date: 6/28/2018 3:08 PM

“Know your customers”, key to any company’s bottom line, has grown up. Customer insights are central to business and understanding them at their deepest level is important in any marketing strategy. The Rolodex system for customer profiles has modernized, yet the tenets of loyalty remain. How do you keep customers engaged and gain new ones in an age of fierce competition, global availability, real-time engagement, and social media activity. Marketing has joined the world of technology.

In today’s landscape, that means navigating social media activity and a myriad of technology solutions in the now conjoined marketing and technology (martech) landscape. New York has long been a leader in any number of industries, not the least of which is marketing, advertising, and technology. Silicon Valley meets the Big Apple. 

Challenges and Solutions Facing Modern Marketers

The scope of martech has increased significantly year over year growing its custom solutions to meet the individual needs of customers, consumers, and business. The one-size-fits-all approach is a thing of the past. Today, businesses are as individual to marketing campaigns as their customer should be to them with a focus now on the customer experience (CX) within a customer relationship management framework.

Tailor-made solutions in the martech industry require marketers to understand the evolution of effective content and data strategies, to choose the right martech solutions, and connect those strategies to their solutions. The ability to connect solutions across a variety of channels helps to create a better customer experience.

As technology grows at an exponential rate, businesses are struggling to keep up. It’s estimated that about 70 percent of marketers are expecting an increase in their budget, both highlighting the importance of technology to the modern marketer and echoing the sentiments of martech’s law: the traditional pace of organizations can’t keep up with the pace of technology.

The Tech Savvy Marketing Department

Understanding marketing technology is a critical skill in marketing followed a close second by data literacy. Organizations find they must hire dedicated and skilled professionals to help navigate and manage additional responsibilities within the marketing department such as technology plan development and more effective utilization of existing capabilities. 

Customers have more choice than ever before today and any number of touchpoints with which to research and buy products. Gaining insight into their needs and desires requires a focused approach in developing martech to align with company strategy for comprehensive consumer data. Deciding which technology to embrace and which to ignore is essential in developing a strategy to determine success. 

Data Drives Customer Insights

The customer experience of today has evolved to meet customers where they’re most comfortable. Whether it’s in-person in a brick and mortar store, online, or an app on their phone, customers have a myriad of touchpoints with which to interact with businesses and businesses gain insight into their customers behaviors, needs, wants, and desires. These data-driven efforts create the added bonus of delivering executives benefits of more confident decision making. 

As businesses explore customer trends and preferences, the key structure behind the customer experience comes together. The building blocks of people, processes, and technology involve cross-departmental initiatives among sales, marketing, IT, purchasing, and production teams. Benefitting both customers and the organizational readiness of a business is a solid foundation to deliver a positive customer experience. 

Benefits of Delivering Exceptional Customer Experience

If customer is king, then data-driven customer experience is its crowning glory. Benefits include improved processes, quality improvement, increased business agility, reduced costs, and a healthy bottom line. When customers are happy, businesses thrive. Some organizations may be farther along in gaining customer insights through customer experience initiatives, but from startups to established, there are a range of benefits as well as challenges.

A successful customer experience requires rethinking processes and thinking long term. To do something well takes time, though in our technologically advanced world it is important organizations ramp up their pace to meet demand to deliver outstanding customer service. From data integration to technology implementation, delivering a positive customer experience requires a mix of activities and competencies which must be conveyed across channels and throughout the organization. 

Martec’s Law: technology changes exponentially (fast) yet organizations change logarithmically (slow) and the gap is widening. - Scott Brinker,

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