As today’s companies look to marketing chiefs to deliver winning customer experiences (CX)—not just promote brands—the urgency to revive businesses has accelerated the rise of the data-driven marketer to turn data insights into action.
Yet the data story for many marketers is incomplete. Nearly 60 percent of marketers point to inconsistencies with the level of depth and granularity of customer insights, while a shocking 36 percent admit they don’t have the data to know their consumers, let alone anticipate their needs, according to new research from the CMO Council. Indeed, only 3 percent of marketers believe their organizations are exceptionally effective in turning data insights into actions.
The Council’s new report, Forging the Future of Customer Experience: Building a Unified Data Foundation for Turning Customer Insight into Action, with research partner Teradata, takes a look at how marketing leaders are approaching the data conundrum and covers the organizational allies required to make the most out of data assets.
Marketers have plenty of data, but now it’s about leveraging that data across channels and organizational touchpoints in real-time and in a way that feels personal, relevant and even anticipatory. This is the marketer’s mandate today.
Failure to achieve this mandate comes at a steep price. Recent CMO Council research highlights that three out of four senior marketing leaders feel their jobs could be on the line if CX strategies don’t deliver profitable results. Moreover, 77 percent of CMOs admitted they were yet to realize the full revenue potential of today’s connected customer.
“The mandate to solve the data-driven CX enigma has only increased as data assets become more robust and fickle customers stand ready to defect if their expectations are not met,” said Donovan Neale-May, executive director of the CMO Council, in a news release. “Marketers realize that in order to truly impact CX, they must reach across the aisle and ensure there is a cohesive experience and data story across all relevant functional touchpoints in the organization.”
The report has identified four key steps in this journey:
- Integrate and unify your customer data set
- Scale and turn data building blocks into customer insights
- Turn customer insights into action
- Foster a collaborative data-sharing culture
“Customer experience is the new brand for any leading organization. This was true before the COVID-19 pandemic and is now the deciding factor for consumers who are interacting and doing more transactions online—from retail to banking to healthcare—than ever before,” said Martyn Etherington, chief marketing officer at Teradata, in the release. “In order for any enterprise to have a successful, sustainable customer experience initiative that produces transformational outcomes, it needs to leverage all of its customer data, entrust it to those who can turn data into insights, and remove the friction in turning those insights into action.”
Today’s connected consumer expects a personalized experience optimized across channels. Marketers must effectively connect the dots of the customer journey across channels and touchpoints to not only understand what their customers have done, but what they are likely to do.
“The holy grail is for companies to become anticipatory,” says Keyur Desai, former chief data officer at TD Ameritrade, in the release. “If you’re postured that way as a company, it’s actually much cheaper to operate than being reactive.”
Key takeaways from the study:
The report is based on the CMO Council conducting 11 in-depth interviews with executives from Comcast, F5 Networks, Gap, Juniper Networks, HSBC, TD Ameritrade, Visa and Vodafone.