TFM&A 2013 and the smarter marketer

Last week Experian Marketing Services was out on the road sharing our passion for data and insight at the Technology for Marketing & Advertising (TFM&A) tradeshow. TFM&A is a great opportunity not only to show our vision for the future of marketing but also to listen to our customers’ pain points, what they are struggling with and what are the challenges for businesses in 2013.

One of the key themes that we kept coming back to was customer centricity. We all know the marketing mantra that the customer comes first and should be at the heart of everything we do, but it is easy to lose sight of this when we are all pressured to hit deadlines and drive results. Of all the conversations that we had during TFM&A the three recurring topics that were linked to being customer centric concerned linking data sets, understanding customers and being channel agnostic:

Linking data sets
A common headache for businesses is bringing together disparate data sets. In the digital age there is no shortage of data out there, in fact consumers are more measurable than ever before. The problem is bringing these data sets together and being able to link them back to a single entity – the customer. At the same time, customers are becoming more demanding, expecting a seamless joined up experience of the brands they interact with. In a recent Experian survey 84% of consumers* said they would walk away from a company that doesn’t link up, understand and respond to their engagements across channels. Linking data sets intelligently to create a single customer view is a necessary step to leverage actionable insight and deliver the right message at the right time to the customer.

How well do you really know your customers?
Even for those brands that were adept at linking data sets, what became obvious was that many of them had no idea what their customers looked like when they weren’t interacting directly with the brand. For example a travel company might have a good idea about how their customers book holidays but have very little knowledge about their other online pursuits. What TV programmes do your core customers watch? What newspapers do they read? Where do they shop? What coffee do they drink? All of these questions and many more can be answered with Experian data using tools such as Experian Mosaic UK and Experian AudienceView to uncover consumer behaviour both online and offline to provide a rich and granular insight into who your customers really are.

Becoming channel agnostic
As marketers we are naturally inclined to think in linear channels. We communicate with customers through these channels and have different approaches for search, social, email and mobile. However, the customer doesn’t think in channels, and so as marketers it if we are to be truly customer centric we have to be channel agnostic. This means not relying on any particular channel and having the flexibility to alter a campaign in real time to respond to changing behaviours.

By bringing together different data sets, increasing knowledge about the customer and becoming channel agnostic marketers can be a lot more efficient and targeted in the way they go about their business. To find out more about how Experian Marketing Services can help you become a smarter marketer you can download our guide or watch our Alex video.

*April 2012: Experian Marketing Services survey of 2,057 UK Citizens aged 18+.


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