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Put Life Into Your Customers' Life Cycles

The term "closing a sale" is unfortunate. It reflects marketers' thinking that with the acquisition of a sale they can move on to something else.

Instead, the sale should be viewed as a unique opportunity to begin to engage the customer across what will hopefully be a multiyear customer life cycle.

According to a Forrester report on the customer life cycle, CMOs need to take specific life-cycle actions to win, serve, and retain customers:

  • CMOs must match specific customer activities with tailored marketing actions to deepen engagement and enhance customer relationships.
  • CMOs must use the customer life cycle to reorient measurement and analytics approaches-from measuring specific touch points and transactional activities to measuring the value of the full customer relationship.

Generic messaging simply is not working for consumers who expect brands to present them with experiences based on their interaction history. In addition, an Accenture study found 55% of consumers also want a personalized experience on all engagement channels.

Here are two examples of brands that are getting it right-and how.

BCBGMaxAzria: Use Automation And Dynamic PersonalizationWomen's fashion company BCBGMaxAzria has been in business for more than 25 years, but it did not have a customer life cycle marketing strategy. It did, however, understand that its customer base was divided into three different types of fashionistas, and each group required unique actions to become interested and engaged. It used marketing automation to capture customer behavior on the site to send triggered emails to the right customers at the right times.

"We had one welcome email and then maybe they bought, or maybe they didn't, and we would just batch-and-blast marketing emails to them," Tommy Lamb, manager of ecommerce marketing at BCBGMaxAxria Group, told MarketingSherpa. The company learned that generic conversations were not working, so it used automation to help achieve more personalized connections with customers.

  • BCBGMaxAzria identified four key "triggers" and developed associated triggered email messages deployed according to a customer's actions or inactions.
  • Additionally, notification messaging based on shopping behaviors were sent, which not only referenced a clothing item viewed or a new arrival, but associated wardrobe items that might be of interest.

The company reports that triggered email pushes average a 525% increase in click-through rates when compared to nontriggered sends. In addition, open rates have seen a lift of more than 220% when compared to the brand's nontriggered sends. The company is now working on customized landing pages so that when consumers click through an email, they will be taken to a page with the BCBG branding that also is dynamically populated with a personalized product assortment.

AMResorts: Use Data For Greater Understanding
AMResorts, a luxury leisure company, needed a better way to view its entire guest life cycle across its 37 upscale resorts in order to deliver more personalized guest engagement. It used a data solution to study consumer actions and gain insights that drove new tactics.

Guest data from all six AMResorts was integrated into one central data warehouse. This enabled guest segmentation to drive rules-based decisions on personalized marketing content and communications to three key life stage consumers: prospects, reservation-holders, or recent guests.

By delving deep into its data, AMResorts was better able to understand the impact of its campaigns across all digital channels. This, in turn, enabled the company to fine-tune specific messaging and actions relevant to each segment, thereby driving more personalized and meaningful communications, according to Erica Doyne, senior director of marketing of AMResorts.

In summary, customers will continue to expect greater relevance and higher quality brand experiences. The only way to keep them and deepen engagement is to provide increasing levels of relevance and value across their ongoing customer life cycle.


About the Author:
Ernan Roman Direct Marketing's Customer Experience strategies achieve consistent double-digit increases in response and revenue for their clients, which include IBM, MassMutual, QVC, Microsoft, and Symantec Corp.

As a leader in providing Voice of Customer research-based guidance, ERDM has conducted over 10,000 hours of interviews with their clients' customers and prospects, to gain an in-depth understanding of their expectations for high-value relationships.

The results achieved by ERDM's VoC-based strategies earned Ernan Roman induction into the Marketing Hall of Fame.

Visit his blog at: http://ernanroman.blogspot.com/

Preference Management Will Guide Bio Data

As the holidays wrapped up last month, I turned to my next winter checklist-that of Hollywood's movie offerings in theaters. It's near-impossible to get all the big hits in during December's holidays, so I make sure to use January to catch the remainder of the movies I'm interested in seeing. So many winter-release dramas are meant to be seen on the big screen-Star Wars, The Revenant, In the Heart of the Sea all full of vivid landscapes and raw human emotion.

So I was intrigued when I read about a company called Lightwave that measured audience reactions to the intensity of The Revenant. Partnering with 20th Century Fox, Lightwave gathered an opted-in audience during pre-release screenings of the film, and used bioanalytic technology to measure heart rate, blood volume pulse, skin temperature, electrodermal activity and motion. The reactions were measured throughout the showing and then analyzed with neuroscience techniques to gain insight into emotional intensity at key plot points-indicating fight or flight tendencies, heart-pounding moments, particular times when the audience was startled, and thousands of seconds in which viewers were rendered motionless, "indicating peak engagement levels."

While I surely anticipate movies using data like this to tweak scenes for maximum audience reaction, I am also interested to see the many ways companies could apply bio data. Preference management, the active collection, maintenance and distribution of unique consumer characteristics, such as product interest, communication channel preference and frequency of communication will be the bedrock of biofeedback and its applications outside of medicine.

Could you release Fitbit data to a hotel so they can ensure you're relaxed throughout your stay? Would your real-time consumer characteristics be measured by in-store cameras to determine your interest level in items? Could a restaurant pull up your taste preferences and allergies with the press of your fingerprint?

The application of personal data might sound like it's from a novel set in the future, but in reality companies like Lightwave are showing us that the technology is already here. Explaining the benefits (and limitations) of opting-in to the technology allows consumers to consent and engage with data collection, stating preferences for privacy, communications or feedback.

Going forward, it will be essential to use preference management strategies when integrating bioanalytic technology to our everyday lives, or consumers may be more wary than welcoming.







Rob Tate
As Vice President of Sales, Rob is responsible for growing the client base and market share and helping his sales team achieve their goals. He also develops partnership opportunities and industry relationships. Rob focuses on generating consistent results, utilizing sales and opportunity management tools and implementing best-of-class sales methodologies all of which have enabled him to build a scalable sales organization. He continually studies how metrics, leadership, culture, and innovation drive business value in the SaaS and marketing automation fields.

Preference Management Exclusives on CMO.com

"At face value, listening to customers and honoring their preferences is obvious. Every business listens to its customers on some level, and the outcomes are immediate and apparent. At the macro-level, the picture gets blurrier."

Our Chief Strategist, Eric Holtzclaw, is featured in a CMO Exclusive discussing KPIs on customer communications. He explains how preference management can assist enterprises in reacting to millions of data points while simultaneously providing effective privacy compliance and organizational help.

By using preference management metrics, companies can gauge success on important KPIs like contact retention, cost reduction, revenue growth, technology governance and risk mitigation.

These are probably areas you're already thinking about, but Eric is able to pinpoint what it is within each category that can help you streamline your marketing efforts, enhance the enterprise's outreach, and empower your customers.

Check out the article, "Five KPIs to Tell Whether You're Truly Hearing Customers" for his advice, and bookmark it as you continue to make plans for 2016.



Eric Tejeda is the Director of Product Marketing for PossibleNOW and CompliancePoint. Eric supports the organization’s growth objectives by productizing and launching innovative new products and services that fill critical needs in the marketplace. 

With 25 years of experience, Eric firmly believes that permission-based marketing and preference management is a mega trend and the path to success for marketers today. 

Follow me on Twitter: @EricTejeda | Connect on LinkedIn: Eric Tejeda

ICYMI: Preferences, Privacy and Personalization in the News

New Google Apps Feature Helps Businesses Keep Sensitive Information Out Of Emails

Google's new Data Loss Prevention privacy tool prevents employees from transmitting sensitive information, like credit cards or social security numbers, through email. Businesses that use the application can set up rules to quarantine emails with particular data based on predefined rules. Click here to read more.

DSW Amplifies Customer Engagement Via In-Store Pickup and Ship-to-Store Programs

Designer Shoe Warehouse (DSW) stores are unrolling omnichannel strategies to meet their vision of "any shoe, anywhere, any time" thanks to eBay In-Store Pickup and Ship-to-Store options for 467 store locations. The store initially began its omnichannel mission in 2011 with their proprietary stock locator tool, which enhanced seamless information-sharing and fulfillment. Click here to read more.

The USPS Can Now Email You Photos of Your Mail

Prior to getting home from work, you can anticipate exactly what's in the mailbox. The USPS has rolled out a pilot program called "Informed Delivery" that emails black-and-white photos of up to 10 pieces of mail per day. The email service is expected to bypass the "mail CEO"-the person who tends to deal with the mail in the average household-so other family members can see the mailbox's original contents. Click here to read more.

Anheuser-Busch InBev Introduces Light-Up Bottles for Tequila-Infused Beer

Oculto, an Anheuser-Busch beer flavored with tequila, will introduce smart label technology, LED lights, geotargeted apps to connect with the brand, and discoverable elements like hidden messages. The beer is the first in the company's catalog to use that level of technology. Click here to read more.

Walmart Prepares to Enter Mobile Payments Business

While consumers have been slow to adapt to mobile payments for a variety of reasons, including needing the newest phones, Walmart has started to offer a mobile payment system accessible from the store's smartphone app. Using QR codes, the customer can scan their phone at the checkout and payment will be charged to credit cards registered in the app. Click here to read more.






Eric Tejeda is the Director of Product Marketing for PossibleNOW and CompliancePoint. Eric supports the organization’s growth objectives by productizing and launching innovative new products and services that fill critical needs in the marketplace. 

With 25 years of experience, Eric firmly believes that permission-based marketing and preference management is a mega trend and the path to success for marketers today. 

Follow me on Twitter: @EricTejeda | Connect on LinkedIn: Eric Tejeda

Preference Collection Best Practices: The Webinar

Preference Management Video Series

Looking for a more in-depth take on best practices for preference management and preference centers? This webinar is a useful overview of the steps to take when optimizing your preference center and collecting preferences.

Getting opt-ins from consumers is a great boost for communications and loyalty, and it's entirely possible to integrate with your existing technology system. In fact, a good preference management center should be provider-neutral and allow the company to decide how information is used internally - smart flexibility is key.

By organizing communications in different ways, you're able to use preference management and preference collection to understand who your customers are and what they want, making it more likely you are sending the right message to them at the right time.

In this webinar, Chief Strategist Eric Holtzclaw walks you through the essentials in preference management.


In the following weeks, we'll continue to roll out videos to guide you through the best practices of preference management. If you haven't yet explored our Resource Center, you can download the Preference Collection Best Practices whitepaper here.



Eric Tejeda is the Director of Product Marketing for PossibleNOW and CompliancePoint. Eric supports the organization’s growth objectives by productizing and launching innovative new products and services that fill critical needs in the marketplace. 

With 25 years of experience, Eric firmly believes that permission-based marketing and preference management is a mega trend and the path to success for marketers today. 

Follow me on Twitter: @EricTejeda | Connect on LinkedIn: Eric Tejeda

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