Reprinted from TrustedPeer
Meet the Expert
President, Kinanda Sustainable Brand Development
- 20 years experience in digital marketing, loyalty marketing and customer relationship marketing.
- Clients have included: Microsoft, AOL, Cisco, 3Com, EA, HP, Intel, Sun, Oracle, Wells Fargo, and Mindjet.
- Built and grew MRM Worldwide's agency account for Microsoft. Led launch of SharePoint, the highest-performing B2B campaign in history of Microsoft. Led the agency relationship with Microsoft's U.S. subsidiary, with $25MM in fees and $100MM media.
- Founded Kinanda Sustainable Brand Development, which helps brands and agencies cultivate behavior shifts and create sustainable institutional value and growth. Clients include Walmart, Virgin Atlantic, Destination British Columbia, Intel.
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Customer Life Cycle Marketing
President, Kinanda Sustainable Brand Development
- Companies are hiring chief customer officers to head up marketing and product development.
- Companies are recognizing that the company doesn't manage the relationship with the customer, but rather, the customer manages its relationship with the company. Disney pioneered this notion, and its chief customer officer is a leader in marketing and product development. This new angle on what someone in that position does includes on-the-ground interaction with customers. Disney's chief customer officer actually spends time in Disney Stores, at Disneyland, and interacting with kids at Disney movies in order to figure out what those kids and their parents really want.
- Approaches to "big data" are being refined.
- Much as many companies still don't have a handle on their data, the trend is still toward at least attempting to get a grip on it. Thanks to big data, we can analyze digital behavior, transactional behavior, customer service interactions, and social media interactions. All of that data, rather than just samples of it, is now available, which is really exciting. All of that information can now be stitched together to tell a cohesive story that can be used to further marketing and sales objectives.
- Increased global collaboration demands new ways of "staying on the same page."
- When you have a product that you're marketing internationally, marketing strategies need to be tailored to each country – you can't just have a "one size fits all" approach. Orchestrating and adapting the brand experience for customers across different countries and languages takes a particularly sophisticated level of collaboration among team members in different countries.
For example, companies need to foster collaborative ecosystems with tools and processes and help guide successful interactions with customers. One of the biggest challenges but most important efforts is to keep everybody on the same page and facilitate the ability for them to customize for their own market, discipline, and customer touchpoints. International teams have to stay in touch to continuously gather feedback and understand what's going on with a brand in a given country, including what's working and what's not.
- There's a transition from silos of communication to delivering communications consistently across channels.
- Good customer-centric marketers are learning that they have to understand multiple channels – customer relationship marketing (CRM), email, customer service, social media, web and mobile. Real-time or proximity interactions are also entering the mix – mobile has provided the opportunity for brands and customers to interact in-store, and around the world.
- Value propositions are being revised to be less focused on the commodity itself.
- Traditionally marketing has been aimed at letting the customer know what the product does, why it's good for them, and what a good deal it is. But increasingly, brands are communicating to their customers the other ways in which their brand and products are good – they're good for the community, for society and for the environment. Patagonia, for example, does a great job of engaging customers around doing good for the planet and derives significant customer loyalty from that message.
- Customer-driven innovation is increasingly a priority.
- Crowdsourcing is the new name of the game when it comes to developing new products. The software company SAP estimates that an astonishing 75 percent of its new product ideas come from their customers. More and more, companies are saying to their customers, often via social media, "What do you want us to produce next?"
But it's not just a trend in technology. Nike's last two pair of high-end running shoes were crowdsourced, Safeway has responded to customer demand for reasonably priced organic items, and Whole Foods customers demanded grass-fed beef and wine that was priced to compete with Trader Joe's famous Two Buck Chuck.
Customer Life Cycle Marketing: Key Trends