Are you ready for the new marketing battleground?

As we’ve recently discussed, the marketing industry is entering the era of experience, with consumers demanding a greater customer journey.

Brands are becoming increasingly aware of the benefits a positive customer experience can have on building awareness and helping them to stand out from the competition, WARC’s Toolkit 2018 notes. Despite this acknowledgement, many are still failing in this area. In fact, 2017 was the worst year for UK consumers when it came to customer experience, according to Customer Think.

So, perhaps it’s not surprising that marketers are now turning their attention to improving customer experience (CX) this year. In fact, Accenture Interactive MD Mark Sherwin described it as the “battleground for brands today.”

He added: “Consumers and even business buyers have the ability to pick and choose more freely than ever. And industries are being disrupted constantly to give new choices.

“Any given person is only a ‘customer’ for a small percentage of their life. To create more meaningful experiences, [brands need to] appeal to them as the people that they are for the 99% of the time, not the customer they are for the 1%.”

CX becoming a top priority

Marketers have more touchpoints with their customers than ever before, but it seems they are starting to realise that they need to look at all the interactions to be able to deliver on customer experience.

WARC’s survey found that over half of brand (53%) and agency (58%) respondents are prioritising customer experience within their digital transformation strategy, improving their use of data and more rigorously mapping the customer journey.

While CX optimisation may be vital for brands, and 60% of client-side respondents cited it as being “very important”, tools focused on this area are the least-used martech by brands. Currently, such tech is used by just 37% of brands, and less than a fifth (17%) have the ability to optimise experience across all channels and touchpoints. However, almost a quarter (21%) reported plans to adopt CX-focused technology in the next year.

But delivering excellent customer experience is going to take more than investing in technology.

How to get CX right

The customer experience is how consumers discover, engage and purchase your brand’s products or services. To succeed in this area, brands are going to have to undergo structural change in order to ensure that this is more than jumping on the latest trend and becomes an integral part of their culture.

According to WARC, brands also need to:

Look at CX as a whole, instead of just looking at individual touch points. Consumers don’t view their experience with a brand as single aspects, so neither should you.Get smart with their data and bring it all — both online and offline — together to create a single view of the customer. Create teams that are dedicated to customer journeys to ensure progress is always being made.Avoid focusing on short-term targets, like optimising clicks, and begin to prioritise brand-building.

If you need help preparing for the new marketing battleground, get in touch with Fireworx today.