If you think 2014 brought great change to the world of marketing, just wait for 2015. Whereas this year’s conversations focused on listening to and knowing your customer, 2015 will pressure marketers to undergo the profound shift toward knowing what your customer will do next. It’s a progression driven by the various sources of data that allow fine-grained segmentation and help scored propensity models improve upon that segmentation. For marketers, 2015 is going to be a year of big change—are you ready for it?
2015 Is Around the Corner
The key to truly surprising and delighting your customers is knowing their next move. And always being ready to respond to every potential engagement scenario is very difficult…nearly impossible, in fact. What can be done, however, is anticipating what behaviors your customers will exhibit next and be ready to respond when and where it makes the most sense. These behavior-based scenarios are your best engagement opportunities. They’re also the moments that your customer is “in market” and most likely to respond favorably to engagement. They’re the moments you need to be more relevant than ever before. Every time you succeed, you’ll know your customer and your up-sell opportunities a bit more.
Making Your Channels Hum
Next year will also be the time when many marketers move beyond omni-channel challenges to channel optimization. As customers connect in more ways, the opportunities for brands to find the best channel to serve their needs, or combination of channels, become even more important. So don’t force your customer down the paths you want them to go down and start giving them the power to decide for themselves—they’ll love you for it.
Big Data Needs to Be Fast Data
Beyond optimizing your channels, you’ll need to work with large data sets that fight your every attempt to tame them into neat columns and rows.
Unfortunately, 2015 won’t make this task any easier, so it’s time to invest in the tools to work with any and all your data, and to do it at the speed of the marketplace (that’s very fast). You may have the resources to do it in-house, or you may need to go outside to find the right skills, but one thing’s for sure: It’s no longer acceptable to work only with the data that makes life easy for the marketing analyst.
Data is a tricky thing: Waiting for too much of it often delays decisions, while not waiting long enough leads to poor choices. In 2014, simply having data was good enough, but in 2015 there will be an expectation of having the right data. That is, the right data to make the right decision with the right amount of risk. And knowing what’s enough data requires the experience you can only get by testing and learning.
If it seems early to talk about 2015, it isn’t. What’s left of 2014 will play out with the investments you’ve already made. With Black Friday and the holiday shopping season coming up quickly, there’s very little time to plan ahead for how your strategy needs to change in the coming year.
If you’re struggling to play catch-up, we invite you to check out TIBCO Engage and begin closing the gap between where you are and where you already should be. We hope to hear from you soon!