Your customer data is important to you, why?

You must own the data

If you think that using social media is all you need to do, think again because they own the customer data, you just borrow it.  You need to obtain email addresses, mobile phone numbers and as much personal information as you can get hold of so that you can reach your customers.

You must segment your market

Profiling your audience enables more personalised communication and that results in much better results in terms of interaction with your customers which is key to building that sense of community.

You must post relevant information

If you have one "newsletter" for all of your customers and potential customers you are bound to only interest a few at any one time.  Splitting the newsletter to cater for different interest groups (male v female or local v distant) will dramatically increase customer interest.

How can we use customer data?

Know your ideal customer(s)

If you know your ideal customers you can tailor your messaging to attract more customers like them.  What attributes do they have and are you recording them?  If not then how do you know if they are a fit for what you are offering?

Target your messaging

Would you say the same thing to females & male customers or prospects?  Would you inform people about a late notice, special local event if they live too far away to get there in time.  How would you avoid these two example errors if your data doesn't contain the required attributes?

Monitor your responses

Most companies use simplistic tools like MailChimp for email marketing and they can see open rates etc.  Sending emails to segments of the list designed to appeal to that segment should dramatically improve open rates.  Try it and you will see how effective it can be.

Customer Database Marketing – What is involved?

Database marketing can be defined as the collection, analysis, and interpretation of customer data in order to drive more relevant customer experiences. Database marketing involves the collection of data from a range of sources including customer email correspondence, CRM system customer info, data warehouses, and, increasingly, external sources like social media.

Database marketing can be used for communications with current and potential customers. With so much customer data – both internal and external – available to companies today, database marketing is becoming an increasingly important part of the overall marketing strategy.

Database Marketing Examples

The modern customer expects personalised and highly relevant communications with your company. Any materials that seem generic or irrelevant will quickly be skipped over. It is vital that companies engage with customers about the issues most pressing to their business. Database marketing techniques can inform companies of their customer needs and can be the foundation on which to build successful marketing campaigns.

Companies today use database marketing in a number of different ways:

Listening: Leveraging a range of external data sources like social media, company news alerts, personnel changes, database marketers can pinpoint the most suitable companies to target for their next marketing campaign. Other data points including socio-demographic info, product preferences, and digital behaviour can also be collected to create a complete view of your customer.

Relevant Communications: By developing a complete customer profile, database marketing enables companies to deliver the right message, at the right time, to the right person. By analysing up real-time data sources like social media, database marketers can seize upon opportunities as soon as they arise and deliver the most intelligent and targeted marketing communications to both potential and existing customers.

Customer Retention Offers: Database marketing can help your company increase their retention rates and loyalty, by delivering the most personalised retention offers which take into account factors like digital behaviour and online transactions as well as socio-demographic and location data.

Challenges of Database Marketing

Heightened Customer Expectations: The ubiquity of Google search and the smartphone has given today’s customer instant access to the world’s information. The impact of this access is that attention spans have shortened and customers can also find out quite a lot about your company before they ever engage with any sales reps or marketers. As a result, marketers in the past might have shared company brochures with potential customers, whereas now any materials that do not deal directly with the customer’s business needs will be immediately dismissed as generic. In order to meet these heightened expectations, companies need to deliver highly personalised, relevant, and well-timed marketing campaigns and customer interactions.

Data, Data and More Data: Companies today store incredible amounts of data. Add to this all the external data points companies can leverage like digital behaviour and preferences, and then you begin to get some idea about the sheer scale of the data available. Interpreting and analysing all this data is no longer humanly possible, so the most progressive companies are turning towards customer experience technologies, which capture data across all these channels and generate the contextually relevant insights companies need to resonate with the modern customer.

Database Marketing Best Practices

When it comes to database marketing, there are a number of best practices companies can follow to give them the best chance of succeeding.

Multi-channel marketing: Customers today no longer operate on a single device. For example, they might begin looking at your product on their laptop and continue their research the following day on the train on the way to work on their smartphone. Finally, they might check in again on their iPad later that evening. For your database marketing campaign to succeed, you should strive to provide a consistent customer experience across all devices. Users should be able to switch device without any disruption.

Analyse All Data Streams and Sources: The best customer experience tools analyse the data that takes place across your entire technology stack and all your data streams. It is vital that you gather all this data and not just some of it. In order to get a complete picture of your customer, you should look towards tools that analyse data from all available sources like CRM systems, data lakes, online behaviour, and POS systems.

Predictive Analytics: With so much data available to companies, database marketers who choose the right tools can leverage predictive analytics, which push alerts and notifications to users at the most opportune moments in the buyer’s journey like when a customer looks like they might discontinue service. These insights can help your company eliminate issues before they arise and drive loyalty in current customers.