Marketers already know data is key to success in B2C and ecommerce.
But knowing it’s important and actually being able to utilize data are very different things. Unfortunately, complete and accurate customer data has been shockingly difficult to get your hands on in B2C marketing.
Your data is likely fragmented across multiple systems, including your ecommerce platform, point-of-sales system, email marketing software, and paid ad platforms. Because of that, you have to ask your IT team for help pulling the numbers, centralizing the data, and running detailed reports on your latest omnichannel campaign. Unless you have a team of dedicated data scientists, it can take days or even weeks to get the information you need for campaigns you’re working on right now.
But what if you could eliminate the gap between data and marketing execution?
If you could not only access and manipulate detailed customer data in real-time, but also use it to power your marketing campaigns, what amazing and personalized campaigns would you run? This isn’t just a marketing dream — it’s possible. But it takes a major shift in thinking and technology to pull it off.
The many systems of B2C marketing
B2C marketing is more complex than ever. The average marketer uses at least 12 different marketing tools — and that number is continuing to grow. As the channels your buyers use proliferate at a rapid pace, so too do the systems that marketers use to execute campaigns. You probably have:
- Ads on Facebook and Instagram
- Email marketing campaigns through your ESP
- Push messaging campaigns through your mobile marketing system
- Retargeting ads on Google
- Other, new growth experiments running every day
You likely know when a customer clicks on your emails, but you can’t connect email engagements to your paid ads to your website traffic. Each of these systems has their own analytics, so you probably have to export it all into a giant spreadsheet, spend days sorting through it, and often come out on the other side no wiser than you were before.
A missed connection with your customer
You may be thinking, ‘Why does it matter if my customer data is spread out across all these platforms? I can still run analyses on specific campaigns. I don’t need to know more than that.’
Well, B2C brands are often missing key insights into customer behavior because the data is so disconnected. If you’re able to unify your first party data, you can begin to identify previously unseen patterns and habits within your buyers. For example, you might find out that a segment of your most loyal customers starts out by looking for a certain category of products, but ultimately become repeat purchasers of a different category of products. If you knew that, would that inspire you to create a triggered upsell campaign for that second category? Perhaps.
There are a million ways your customer data could be interacting in surprising and powerful ways. But without understanding all of your customer data thoroughly, you’re likely missing a few things about your customers. You can’t know everything, but you can certainly know more than you do right now.
Own your customer data
Thankfully, many B2C brands have evolved from using cumbersome spreadsheets to unifying their customer data to surface these vital insights. More specifically, many brands have adopted customer data platforms (CDPs). CDPs can unify your customer data across channels and devices, however, traditional CDPs still have significant drawbacks for marketers. Because IT generally owns implementation and maintenance, this new technology still means marketers are dependent on IT, analysts, data scientists, or at the very least, APIs (which require involvement from developers) to do their jobs. This not only keeps marketers from realizing their full potential in the modern B2C business environment, it also results in a subpar customer experience.
Even with a system as promising as a CDP, there is still a large gap between the data and marketing execution. Bridging the gap between data and marketing execution isn’t enough — you have to actually close the gap entirely. Marketers must own customer data. By taking control of your customer data, you can operate independently, test campaigns and marketing strategies quickly, and iterate rapidly to drive real results.
Execute powerful data-driven campaigns
So how do you actually connect the data directly to your marketing execution engines? It takes a special platform to do this: a B2C CRM. By eliminating the gap between customer data and marketing automation, you can execute truly personalized, omnichannel campaigns with ease. And with this setup, iteration and optimization are a breeze. Instead of waiting endlessly for reports and analysis, you can run it yourself, then use that data to build highly specific customer segments and create hyper-targeted campaigns to engage specific buyers.
That’s where the real magic happens. For example, you can use data to build a dynamic segment of your most loyal customers that automatically updates in real-time. Then, you can create personalized omnichannel campaigns across email, paid, and social that trigger automatically whenever a buyer visits your site or clicks on an ad. You can then analyze the success of those campaigns yourself — no IT required!
With data directly connected to your execution, B2C marketers like you are empowered to create seriously amazing marketing campaigns.