The days of traditional advertising are long gone. Consumers no longer rely solely on newspaper and radio ads to discover and purchase products. Today, the most powerful promotions come in the form of digital media.
“Customers are turning to social media to interact with companies—for better or for worse. They want two-way feedback, product communities, and a commitment to service and they want it now,” says Daniel Newman, a strategy consultant, analyst, and columnist for Commercial Integrator. “That means marketing departments need to use technology, first and foremost, for communication. And they need to make sure they’re grabbing valuable customer insights from every exchange.”
To help your marketing department become more digital savvy and ready to embrace its digital transformation, here are 5 tips offered by Newman:
Forge Solid and Long Lasting Relationships
With so much information available via the Internet, it can be difficult to forge lasting customer relationships. One false step and those customers will simply move on to the next deal. For this reason, it’s become increasingly important to ensure a positive customer experience—not just the day your ad goes live but throughout the entire product lifecycle.
Glean and Utilize Customer Data
“Every time a customer interacts on the customer journey, the marketing team must be using that exchange for the purpose of making the customer experience better,” Newman advises. But emotions are just as important to consider. To reach a deeper understanding of your customers, you’ll need to get more personal with your promotions through incentives, coupons, messaging and other marketing tactics. And here’s an important caveat: Newman suggests that these personalized messages happen in real time.
Deliver Instant Gratification
When information is so easily accessible, consumers demand instant gratification. They want your attention, your product, and your service now—there’s no such thing as waiting your turn … or waiting for a better deal, for that matter. Technologies like artificial intelligence can enable marketing teams to react quickly to customers, keeping them engaged and increasing the odds of making a sale by hitting them with smart beacon coupons, for example. With the right technology, this level of customer engagement can happen automatically, without any human effort.
Embrace Your Importance; Build a Great Team
Armed with deeper insights about the needs and wants of customers, a marketing team’s role in a company’s digital transformation becomes increasingly important. It’s a shift that doesn’t often sit well with the higher ups in the company. Eighty percent of CEOs have expressed dissatisfaction with their CMOs, according to Fournaise, a marketing effectiveness tracker and booster. Despite this stat, the fact remains that as your company’s marketing experts, you’re critical to the overall mission of the organization. To secure you position of importance, be sure to surround yourself with a great marketing team to accomplish goals and go above and beyond for the customer.
Get Creative and Think Outside the Box
“In marketing’s digital transformation, today’s marketing teams are no longer merely sales people. They’re creative and curious people with strong soft skill sets—willing to listen to the data, but also willing to think beyond it,” Newman says. “They’re people who play an active role in the culture of the company and can help inspire everyone within the enterprise by imagining what’s possible.”