Navigating the 2017 MarTech Conference with marketing trends in mind
With so many moving pieces in the marketing world, it makes sense that marketers turn to various technology platforms to simplify, improve and automate parts of their strategy. The value-add is the overall effect on ROI, but before you get to the finish line, you get an abundance of data at your fingertips, as well as better technology to help improve your overall strategy and brand experience.
As we approach mid-year assessments, marketers have the opportunity to review current performance, evaluate tech options for improved performance and implement strategy revisions to help meet 2017 goals.
What is the one trend that you should be giving extra attention to? It’s all about the customer. You can say that brands are becoming “customer obsessed.” Here are some ways to enhance your strategy:
1. Understanding the path to purchase. Your brand spends time creating buyer personas for a reason, right? If you understand how your customers move through their journey to become an SQL, you can discover where your marketing team’s pain points exist which will guide you to the right marketing technology – or at the very least, changes to make in your strategy. Knowing where your target audience goes for content, recommendations and how they make decisions is part of the early discovery in your overall marketing strategy. Check this off your list first!
If you’re attending MarTech Conference and are into learning more about optimizing the customer journey (hint: you should be), Stop in for “Sprint’s Pre-Pad Digital Transformation: Using Machine Learning & Multi-Armed Bandit Experimentation to Optimize Every Interaction Across the Customer Journey” on Wednesday for a case study into implementing martech to assist with customer engagement and improve your bottom line.
2. Optimizing the customer journey. Now that you understand your customer and how they move through their buyer’s journey, it’s time to optimize the experience. It’s a top priority for 72 percent of businesses, and it’s crucial for staying relevant and competitive. Your marketing team needs to understand your customer’s pain points: from the research phase to customer service phase of their journey, to identifying how to make their experience flawless. Fine-tune and personalize social, content and email tech and strategies, and ensure that your website user experience solves problems. This optimized strategy is how you generate revenue, and that’s how you create brand advocates. Do not fall behind your competitors here.
Also on Wednesday at MarTech, Microsoft talks “Driving Stronger Customer Experience and Business Results Through a Highly-Scaled Martech Ecosystem and Tight Integration of Marketing to Sales” for more customer journey optimization validation.
3. Don’t ignore the data, analytics and insights. Regardless of the depth of your martech stack, you have access to data through Google Analytics, social platforms, your CRM, etc. The data is your ticket to continually improving your buyers’ journey and customer experience. Your analytics and insights can show you where your martech investments will be most worthwhile. And all your data, analytics and insights will ultimately translate to proving your marketing team’s ROI – and impressing your C-suite.
Check out “Designing Customer Experiences by Leveraging Data and Analytics” at MarTech to help assess and optimize your strategy for your customers’ needs.
4. Implementing the right martech stack. Of course, we need to talk about the “right” stack. Starting with the basics, your investment depends on your strategy, the size of your team, and your budget. Do not invest in hundreds or thousands of dollars of tech if you don’t have a team that can learn, utilize, optimize and report through each tool. All your tools should ultimately contribute to your brand’s ROI, so be realistic about your team’s capabilities and set the right expectations. If you’re not sure that your in-house team can handle a martech stack, consider hiring an integrated agency to help.
Stop by “How to Build a Martech Stack That Fits Your Company’s Needs” if you’re at MarTech.
5. Bonus tip: Considering new tech trends. These trends are becoming more and more mainstream, but it’s important to consider whether tech – such as AI or VR – is the right move for your customer experience. If investing and implementing new tech will not improve the CX of your buyer’s journey, it may not be right for your brand. Additionally, consider your target audience – while some customers may want a VR experience during their path to purchase, others may hold more value on communication with a human. Your buyer personas are important in this decision. Use these, as well as your data and insights to determine the best course of action.
Listen in to one brand’s experience with artificial intelligence to align marketing and sales to drive revenue in “How Artificial Intelligence is Transforming Customer Acquisition” at MarTech.
Marketers should be making all martech, strategy and staffing decisions with their customer in mind. New marketing technology can help automate the customer journey, optimize the customer experience and prove overall ROI, but make sure your team is being smart about expectations and capabilities.
Bonus Martech session suggestions:
- The Future of Customer Experiences and Emerging Technology: Moving from Silos to Connected Ecosystems
- How to Use Psychological Principles to Improve Your Customer Experience & Increase Conversions
- Adventures in Agile: How Hootsuite Broke Down Silos to Make Innovative Campaigns