If 2017 was ‘The Year of Engagement’, then 2018 may be ‘The Year of Personalized Interaction’. Companies stepped up last year to understand consumer behavior, measure more than just ‘clicks’ and focus on the consumers most highly engaged (and most profitable). With progress made on achieving growth through customer acquisition, commercial organizations today are now seeking ways to move beyond engagement and first purchase.
- The goal? Provide steady revenue from the desired customer base.
- The strategy? Connect all customer interactions, from first search through post-purchase encounters and create an end-to-end personalized experience.
Although not a new concept, advice about post-purchase tactics started bubbling actively in mid-2017. An IBM-sponsored study reiterated the importance of post-purchase engagement for building brand loyalty and stronger customer relationships. Whether or not your organization engages a marketing consultancy or advertising agency, you know, and have been counseled to encourage enrollment in loyalty programs, send thank-you confirmations and reminder emails with upsells, solicit product reviews, and run social media contests. A quick Google search on ‘customer retention’ brings up more than 20 million suggestions, confirming the heightened interest in staying connected with customers.
Anyone having an iota of doubt about the seriousness of customer experience (CX) need only look at a few statistics —and these are only the tip of the iceberg:
- “Companies that excel at customer experience grow revenues 4-8% above the market.” - Bain & Co.
- “Maximizing satisfaction with customer journeys has the potential not only to increase customer satisfaction by 20% but also to lift revenue by up to 15% while lowering the cost of serving customers by as much as 20%.” - McKinsey & Company
- Forrester data shows that 72% of businesses say improving customer experience is their top priority.
- “By 2020, customers will manage 85% of the relationship with an enterprise without interacting with a human.” - Gartner
- “75% consumers expect a consistent experience wherever they engage (e.g., website, social media, mobile, in person)” - Salesforce
The important thing to remember is that the actions born from customer engagement are only as good as the data we collect and our skill at deriving insights from it. The challenges with capturing useful post purchase customer data can hamper our ability to deliver the complete experience our customers are seeking.
Getting Detailed Product Attribute and Purchase Classifications
Post-purchase engagement’s reliance on accurate data to effectively connect with customers puts pressure on classification systems. As a marketer, your systems need to go beyond basic metrics like size or brand to capture and standardize the nuances relevant to consumers. For example, determining if a baby car seat was purchased by first-time parents will lead to post-purchase interactions that have a unique tone compared to communications with customers who are already parents. But to deliver personalized content to your customers you have to have a clear understanding of who they are and what they have been purchasing from you.
Adding Context to Multi-Channel Data Sets
The extensiveness of the SoMoLo (social, mobile and location) data set can be difficult to harness in a meaningful way, particularly when context is becoming increasingly important in our response to customers. We can determine the channel customers use to reach us, and their reason for contacting us. But to provide a truly exceptional customer experience, understanding exactly what, when and how your customers are looking for answers will allow you to drive your CQ (Customer Quotient) to new heights.
Encouraging Your Customers to Provide Accurate Post-Purchase Data
While dealing with the complexities of post-purchase data collected passively, you may also face the challenge of ensuring the quality of data customers actively provide. A recent Deloitte survey about brokered databases showed more than two-thirds of consumers said these data sets got their information right less than 50% of the time across demographic, economic and purchase attributes. About 4-in-10 also said their online purchase data was incorrect. Despite the errors, only 37% of consumers surveyed chose to correct their data, with most citing concerns about privacy as the reason for leaving errors ‘as-is.’ Vetting these databases will improve their usefulness, but you can also improve data quality by creating easy-to-use customer inquiry systems and product registrations.
Although challenges exist with capturing post-purchase customer data, asking the right questions, systematizing how collected information is coded, and analyzing thoughtfully will help you build remarkable customer relationships.
Curious about how you can enhance your customer’s experience? Find out today! Call us at 289-729-0709 or contact us online.
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