Marketers overwhelmingly agree that gaining a single view of the customer is vital to improving return on marketing spend and providing the seamless experiences that today’s always-on customers expect. But only 6% have attained that panoramic customer view, according to a just-released study from Signal, Preparing for Cross-Channel Success: Solving the Identity Puzzle.
“In today’s connected world, cross-channel identity is the great make or break requirement for marketing success,” said Mike Sands, CEO of Signal. “But while consumers interact with brands across mobile, websites, in stores, and more, marketers are struggling to connect the dots, understand customer identities, and create the seamless experiences consumers demand.”
Based on a global survey of nearly 200 marketers, the report details that an overwhelming majority of brands do not have a single view of their customers, despite 90% of marketers reporting it as important or essential to achieving key marketing goals. For example, 62% of respondents stated that fragmented data leads to incomplete marketing measurement and hinders the ability to personalize customer experiences. 35% also state that they cannot understand the customer journey with incomplete data, and one quarter say it causes inefficient and wasteful media buying.
Additional key findings
• The promise of a real-time, single customer view is great, but it’s difficult to achieve. The study found 57% of marketers are unable to merge profile fragments as data becomes available, and 55% lack the ability to collect and connect data across channels. Current tools used by marketers aren’t helping solve these problems, as 70% say their solutions have gaps in data capabilities or effectiveness. Only 8% of respondents say their tools are doing a good job in helping them develop a unified customer view.
• Marketers struggle to gather and integrate data from many of the most common consumer touch points. Only 33% of marketers can collect and integrate mobile app data, and only half can do so from CRM systems. Less than half — 42% — can collect and connect ad impression data, and only 23 percent are able to gather and merge Point of Sale (POS) data.
• Creating a panoramic customer view is integral to business success. Understanding customer behavior across channels, engaging customers across channels, and improving marketing ROI are the top three reported business benefits of having a single customer view.
“Being able to understand the complete customer journey in a fragmented, multi-channel world — that’s the marketing challenge of our time,” said Sands. “It’s also why we created the Fuse platform — to give marketers a comprehensive, always-on solution for building unified customer profiles that they can use however they want, wherever they choose.”