Thursday, May 18, 2017

Digital Marketing, Digital Transformation, and the Customer Experience: Is There a Connection?

Digital marketingDigital transformation is changing the shape of nearly every industry today, as companies use digitalization to create bold, new business models, improve processes and develop new products and services.

So, too, is the profound transformation of the customer experience.  The question many manufacturers is asking when it comes to digital marketing, digital transformation, & the customer experience: Is there a connection?

The answer is a definitive "yes." Throughout the customer life cycle, there is a growing interconnectedness among the way companies market products, the way those products are created and the way customers interact with them.

Customers in Control

Today, customers are decidedly in the driver's seat. They expect different types of interactions with the products they use. They want to be hyperconnected, with the ability to use products in different ways, access information and support about their products anywhere and on any device. Most importantly, in most cases, they expect manufacturers to know how the products are being used, including preferences, past purchases, and previous interactions.

This new paradigm opens the door to a new mindset when it comes to digital marketing. Instead of focusing on email open rates and conversion rates, digital marketing teams are increasingly focused on mapping the totality of the customer journey. 

With a better understanding of the types of information customers need and want at each stage of the lifecycle, companies are poised to deliver better experiences for the customer. These experiences generate additional data points that can be used to refine messaging and experiences in the future, both for a single customer and for all customers at a similar stage. 

Digital marketing

 Making the Right Transformation Choices

Keeping in mind the interconnection of customer experiences, it's easy to see that digital marketing plays an important factor in making choices about digital transformation. How should marketing executives approach the issue and influence decisions related to purchasing and investment? Here are several considerations:

  • Provide Leadership. The interconnectedness is not often widely known in the C-suite. Marketing leaders need to take a lead role in contextualizing the impact of digital transformation on how to market at each customer stage.
  • Be OK With Failure. Speed is of the essence today, both from a business perspective and the customer perspective. That means that experimentation needs to happen in real time and failure needs to be an acceptable part of the equation.
  • Find an Advocate. You do not need to persuade the entire C-suite to see your vision. Find one leader to carry the flag for you, perhaps by having the marketing team work on a single project for one senior-level executive and let those results speak for themselves.
  • Make it Physical and Visible. Fill those whiteboards with the results of brainstorming sessions and ideation.  Bring in influencers from around the company for those sessions so they infuse your ideas into other areas of the organization. 
  • Be Careful With Technology. Choose technologies carefully. Sometimes, companies can go overboard with the number of technologies they bring on board during digital transformation. Sometimes, less is decidedly more. 

At Connection Model, we help companies build business. As an inbound marketing agency, we create integrated campaigns that lead to more traffic. To learn more about how Connection Model can help integrate transformation, marketing, and the customer experience, contact us.

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