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Customer engagement is a top priority for marketers: Salesforce report

Highlights
  • Digital marketing ROI is on the rise
  • Mobile marketing adoption has risen significantly
  • Multichannel digital marketing determines success
  • CRM is powering more effective advertising

Marketers are increasingly focussed on customer satisfaction and customer engagement as their top measures for success, a Salesforce survey of nearly 4,000 marketers highlighted. In addition, high-performing marketers are creating journeys for customers, with 65 per cent saying they’ve adopted a customer journey strategy and 88 per cent saying it’s critical to their marketing success.

The physical and digital worlds are merging, causing people to expect personalised, consistent brand interactions across every channel and device. This shift is making the customer journey more important than ever before, and ultimately evolving marketers into customer experience designers. In fact, the research shows that nearly two-thirds of high-performing marketing teams (63 per cent) are implementing digital transformations across their organisation, compared to eight per cent of underperformers.

In addition, 63 per cent of high-performing marketing teams surveyed say they’re excellent at creating personalised, omnichannel customer experiences across all business units compared to two per cent of underperformers.

“The rise of the connected customer is forcing marketing to evolve from delivering outbound campaigns to managing personalised experiences that engage the customer from day one and guide them through a seamless journey with the brand. The results of our research show that high-performing marketers that change their mind-sets, tactics and technology to embrace a customer journey strategy will reap the benefits,” said Scott McCorkle, CEO Salesforce Marketing Cloud, Salesforce.

The report also highloghted the need for marketers to prioritise the customer journey or risk falling behind. Customers have more information, choices and power than ever before. For marketers, the customer experience — which is all interactions between a brand and its customers — now matters more than anything. And today, marketers are empowered to create seamless experiences by adopting a customer journey strategy versus a campaign strategy.
Among high-performing marketing teams surveyed, 65 per cent have adopted a customer journey strategy, and of those, 88 per cent say it’s critical to the success of their overall marketing strategy.

Digital marketing ROI is on the rise. Marketers are seeing increased ROI with email, mobile and social marketing. Among marketers who use email as part of their marketing strategy, 80 per cent agree email is core to their business. Nearly half (49 per cent) of those marketers say it is directly linked to their business’ primary revenue source, a 140 per cent year-over-year (YoY) increase from the 2015 State of Marketing Report. Additionally, 79 per cent of marketers say email generates ROI, a 48 per cent YoY increase.

In addition, 75 per cent of marketers who use social as part of their marketing strategy report social is generating ROI, a 166 per cent increase YoY. Facebook is the most effective social channel according to high-performing marketing teams, followed by Twitter, YouTube, Google+ and Instagram.

Mobile marketing adoption has risen significantly, including location-based mobile tracking (149 per cent increase), mobile push notifications (145 per cent increase), mobile text messaging (111 per cent increase) and mobile applications (98 per cent increase). Additionally, 77 per cent of marketers who use mobile as part of their marketing strategy say mobile actively generates ROI, a 147 per cent increase YoY.

Multichannel digital marketing determines success. Marketers are taking ownership of the customer journey, and their ability to integrate digital marketing channels will determine their performance. Among high-performing marketing teams that have integrated their digital marketing channels — such as email, mobile and social — at least 95 per cent rate the integrations as very effective or effective.

Nearly two-thirds of high performing marketing teams surveyed (63 per cent) have integrated their social media activity into their overall marketing strategy, compared to only 20 per cent of underperformers. Nearly two-thirds of high-performing marketing teams surveyed (64 per cent) have also integrated their email marketing activity with their overall marketing strategy, compared to 19 per cent of underperformers.

The majority of high-performing marketing teams surveyed (60 per cent) have integrated their mobile marketing activity into their overall marketing strategy, compared to 12 per cent of underperformers.

In addition, 81 per cent of high-performing marketing teams surveyed align their mobile campaigns to email campaigns, compared to 46 per cent of under-performing marketers.

Nearly two-thirds of marketers surveyed (65 per cent) are increasing budgets for advertising on social platforms in 2016, making it the third largest area for increased investment behind social media marketing and social media engagement.

CRM is powering more effective advertising. Many marketers still try to target digital advertisements primarily with Web cookies, an unreliable approach with low engagement. Marketers are moving from mass, impersonalised ads to personalised ads at scale by leveraging first-party customer data. For example, marketers can take CRM data in Salesforce and match it against groups of Facebook users which are most similar to their current customers and are more likely to convert.

In order to create more personalised ads and increase engagement, 83 per cent of high-performing marketers use CRM data (e.g., an email address or phone number) to segment or target their digital ads, compared to 57 per cent of underperformers.

Shubhi Tandon

Shubhi Tandon is the Assistant Editor at Digital Market Asia. Fascinated by the evolving digital media industry, she has focussed on tracking developments in the Asia Pacific market since 2014.
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