To Offer Great Customer Experiences, Marketers Need Analytics

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Consumers have never had more choices. Purchase paths have never been more complex. And customer expectations have never been so high. So marketers can no longer follow traditional strategies.

A single shopper’s average purchase decision-making process now spans a 35-day period. It includes roughly nine visits to at least five web sites, for a total of about 45 minutes of shopping, according to a study by research firm GfK.

Consumer choice is driven by expectations of relevance, precision, and value— making digital personalization the new norm. Consumers bombarded by irrelevant messages will either ignore them or use software to block the messages from ever reaching them.

Customers Are Getting Smarter

Simply put — consumers are buying less and researching more. This is especially true of millennials, who employ their already rich knowledge of the digital sphere to dive deeper into product and service data before each buy. This shopping behavior takes place across a variety of different devices — desktop, tablet, and mobile phone — thus stretching marketing across a variety of different formats.

For years, effective marketing has been shifting away from creating a single ad to reach as many people as possible, and with the expansion of digital, effective marketing has become omnipresent.

The spoils go not to the brands with the biggest marketing budgets, but to the brands offering the best customer experience, as Altimeter Analyst Brian Solis demonstrates in his new book, “X: The Experience When Business Meets Design.” Through this lens, data can help marketers create branded experiences that convert consumers by understanding when, where and how to reach audiences as they move through the purchase path.

Being Able to Prove Your Marketing Is Effective

Even a beautiful campaign can fall short for today’s marketers. As Ranstad CMO Frans Cornelis said, “You’re no longer going to become CMO if you don’t know the numbers.”

Today, according to a survey run by Duke’s Fuqua School of Business, only 34% of CMOs can prove long-term impact of marketing spend and only 42% can prove short-term impact quantitatively.

The same survey showed that less than a third of all marketing projects even use analytics. But that’s changing fast. Analysts expect the percentage of marketing budgets spent on better data to nearly double over the next three years, from 6.4% to 11.3%.

Marketers need analytics to prove efficacy not only to themselves, but also to the C-suite. The Duke survey revealed that eighty percent of CEOs don’t trust their marketing teams, and most marketers know it. In his book “The Future of Marketing,” Nicholas Johnson wrote that three-quarters of CEOs agree with the statement that marketers are “always asking for more money, but I can rarely explain how much incremental business the money will generate.”

This issue isn’t going away: Fifty-eight of CMOs who responded to the Duke survey said pressure from the CEO/boards is increasing. The remaining 42% said the pressure remains steady.

This demand for analytics from executives is understandable. Seventy-two percent of marketing teams categorized as “overperformers” in the Marketing 2020 study by Millward Brown stated that they make their decisions by heavily using data insights.

Failure to leverage analytics results in missed opportunities for incremental revenue, stemming from uncertainty on where to spend marketing dollars and how to justify that spend.

Marketers who use data as a foundation of their marketing strategies have learned to implement the following tactics :

· Get a complete picture of consumer behavior in order to apply the appropriate resources to the right engagements at the right time to best reach their audiences

· Optimize spend and ROI across all channels based on performance, not budget allocation

· Create the most resonant brand experience to target consumers

· Understand the data around engagement and be able to act on it

· Know which marketing channel is the best driver of revenue

If you want to improve the performance of your brand and your marketing initiatives, it’s important to have the right analytics resources in place to incorporate data goals into your business objectives, and find a solid partner that can help you tie the pieces together.

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RELATED TO THE AUTHOR OF THE ARTICLE: MICHAEL JONES BECOMES CEO OF PEPPERJAM

EBay Enterprise Marketing Solutions Becomes Pepperjam

After separating from eBay Inc. in November, eBay Enterprise Marketing Solutions has given itself a new name—and a decidedly new look. Returning to its roots, the performance marketing leader has rebranded as Pepperjam, the company announced today.

Founded in 1999 as an ecommerce company, the original Pepperjam doubled down in performance marketing with the launch of one of the first and fastest-growing affiliate networks before being acquired by eBay Inc. in 2011. Michael Jones, who served the original Pepperjam as general manager, now leads the new Pepperjam as CEO.

“In Pepperjam, we have found a true partner that manages our performance marketing channels—including affiliate, attribution, display and paid search—holistically,” said Sheela Battu, Director of Web Marketing at Calvin Klein. “Pepperjam’s recent investments demonstrate its commitment to helping its clients solve their toughest marketing challenges in this rapidly-evolving environment.”

“With our recent acquisitions of Digital Net Agency and AffiliateTraction, Pepperjam has brought together some of the greatest minds and technology in performance marketing, supported by the world’s leading affiliate offering,” said Pepperjam CEO Michael Jones. “We wanted a name that conveyed the hunger and infectious energy of our employees. Returning to Pepperjam felt right.”

“While the Pepperjam brand was created years ago primarily as an affiliate company, we have evolved through acquisitions and organic growth to become a clear leader in performance marketing,” Jones continued. “In a time of growing complexity for marketers, we’re pleased to unify behind a name that embodies commerce-focused marketing technology, expertise, and the insights that connect data and analytics across all performance channels and devices.”

Pepperjam provides the following technology & services:
· The Pepperjam Network
· Affiliate marketing management
· Analytics and insights
· Content and design
· Display advertising
· Search marketing
· Social marketing

The company’s clients include many of the world’s leading brands and retailers: Aeropostale, American Greetings, Dooney & Bourke, GNC, Good Year, Grainger, Kate Spade, Levi’s, NFL, Rite Aid, Sallie Mae and Zales.

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