Too often, businesses today think about customers in terms of their segment – are they B2B or B2C? But is this the way forward if we want to create interactions that drive results? We learned that modern marketing could sometimes feel like a big contradiction. People want the latest tech and experiences that marketing automation can create, but they also crave personalisation and human interaction. How are businesses supposed to meet these demands?
To create strong relationships with the audience, marketers need to remember that the audience are humans first and customers second. Blend personalisation and automation to improve the user’s experience. Automated experiences via email, SMS, and live chat will significantly improve their journey, but personalisation will make it unforgettable.
Simplify your communication by talking to audiences as equals and being honest and empathic. It’s all about meeting the customer’s needs while demonstrating that you are human and trustworthy. The benefit of this marketing tactic is clear: it ensures that the marketing strategy delivers the best possible results.
The value exchange – 2022 version
We’ve all heard of the value exchange. But let’s talk about making it in 2022, when we move beyond an offer in exchange for data. Of course, we still want to use tried and tested means of collecting data, but today’s customer wants to see more from you; they want to align their values with your own.
They want to know who you are and what your business stands for. Talk about what the people in your business are passionate about and your core values. Take a stance.
Maybe it’s something you’ve worked on quietly for years. Well, 2022 is the year you show what’s behind the brand. And remember, you have to walk the walk if you talk the talk. It’ll be far too easy to see through a set of new values introduced only to win over new customers. Authenticity is paramount; make your story more believable and relatable.
Renewed focus on email
Email remains the most effective channel, generating $49 for every $1 spent.1 Not only is it the preferred channel for businesses across every industry and in every vertical, but it’s the channel of choice for customers and users around the world. As a result, email performance affects your overall marketing success. Reports show that global email marketing is expected to increase to $17.9 billion by 2027.2
Reports also suggest increased email usage in the past two years, as open rates grew from 18.7 per cent to 20.6 per cent, while click rates increased from 2.8 per cent to 3.1 per cent.3 Therefore, it’s essential to revisit your email strategy and ensure you have all the bases covered – content, creativity, and personalisation, to hit the right notes with your customers.
‘Retention’ will be the buzzword this year. As we go through a prosperous sales period from Black Friday right through to Christmas and January sales, a shed load of new customers and subscribers will be receiving your emails for the first time. You cannot afford to lose them. So take the time to get to know them. Ask questions, don’t just appear to be listening, actively take an interest in what they’re saying and respond accordingly.
What did they buy or enquire about? Be customer-obsessed and always ask yourself how you can be helpful in the future. Don’t limit this to new customers. Treat every single person in your database with the care and attention they deserve. Use the data to gain insights. Surprise and delight, reward loyalty, and give back to those who have stuck with you through thick and thin.
Customer and user experience
Both CX and UX will continue to be significant for brands to deliver the most satisfying purchasing experience to their subscribers. The ultimate goal is to deliver the right message to the right people at the right time on the right channels.
So, understanding your customer lifecycle will be vital in plotting out when, what, and how customers receive your communications. For example, giving subscribers the power to choose which occasions you market to them about, whether it’s Mother’s Day, Father’s Day or Valentine’s Day. Allowing your database to dictate what they receive goes a long way to creating a tighter bond, which inevitably means better retention.
With UX, consider how easily your customers can interact with your website, emails or apps. Take the time to rethink your emails, the placement of copy and CTAs, and the unsubscribe link – don’t hide it at the foot of your emails. Give your subscribers the chance either to unsubscribe or change their preferences at the top of the page. Waste no time in letting them know that you respect them and want to make sure they’re happy with your service.
Accessibility and payment
Bear in mind the importance of accessibility. Please make sure your emails look and work beautifully across screen types for your readers. Again, your site needs to be as easy to use as possible; think about your preference centre’s placement and how you can make it easy for new subscribers to sign up. It will ensure a seamless experience for customers when they interact with your brand online.
Last but not least, the checkout process. Make the process as simple and frictionless as Amazon’s, remembering their address and payment details. We’re living in the buy now, pay later era, when digital wallets and QR codes are king, thanks to touchless Covid-19 commerce. Reducing barriers to payment will be a winner.
Offering credit is a fantastic way of making payment easier, but have your cusotmers considered additional costs like shipping and upkeep? More importantly, is this purchase essential? Chances are they’re fully aware of what they’re purchasing. And a small reminder from you won’t be required, but showing a little empathy and considering your customer’s wellbeing can often be more important than making that extra sale.
Make this your year
Hopefully these six trends will ramp up your marketing automation strategies and help drive revenue for your business in 2022 and beyond. Start small, think big, and scale quickly. Don’t try to boil the ocean. Pick the key transformative trends that will help you take your business to the next level. Good luck for a fantastic year ahead.