This is the year to focus on a closer level of engagement with customers. Data will be of great importance to help create better engagement, build stronger relationships and drive higher revenue. Automation makes it easier to send more targeted lifecycle messages by leveraging data.
The relationship between in-store and online shopping and purchasing will become another area where marketers can benefit from automation and enhance the experience for their customers. Use the data you have to get new subscribers to become first time purchasers. Automate introductions to social and mobile programs. Order data combined with profile information is another huge opportunity. Commerce marketers can use automation here, starting small and then expanding to have an engaging, revenue-driving triggered message program.
Q&A with Kellie Boggs
How have automated messages evolved recently?
In the last couple of years, we were able to take more of a channel-specific approach, looking at consumer engagement within social, mobile or website and learning from those interactions to evolve content for those specific channels. Also, past behavior by the consumers, including prior orders, influenced automated messages.
What do you see as some of the key changes in email marketing?
Email is being viewed on mobile devices more every day. Marketers are paying more attention to the devices being used to open and read messages whereas in the past, emails were blasted without this in mind. Now marketers are not only concerned with whether the content is relevant to the recipient but they are thinking about the device that they are viewing it on, the timing of automated messages and how the message relates to where they are when using that device.
Which messages will see the biggest changes?
Messages built around the customer lifecycle will see big changes now that it is so much easier for marketers to collect and utilize data. Another area where messages will see big changes is in connecting in-store and online shopping. Marketers should be looking to automate these messages and improve the overall brand experience for their customers.
How do you plan to guide your clients to implement new automated messages and enhance the ones they already have?
I encourage my clients to use the data that they have. For example, a subscription date is powerful. There are ways to enhance your welcome series to get new subscribers to become first time purchasers. You can also introduce them to your social and mobile programs to provide more opportunities for engagement. Purchase data combined with profile information is also another big opportunity. I will be helping my clients to start small–test and grow an engaging, revenue-driving triggered message program in 2015.
Marketers need to be more focused on advancing their automated campaigns. These messages are going to change and evolve as shopping behavior changes. Automated messages can be a game changer, but it’s not just about sending messages. Automation can and should be used to understand what customers want. – Kellie Boggs.