Best practices for digital customer engagement
More than half of of consumers (57%) do not feel that marketers target them correctly, according to a survey report on best practices for multichannel marketing, published by Experian CheetahMail.
The report, entitled 'The perfect digital blend: engaging customers through email, SMS and social media', illustratez the types of messages that resonate with consumers across three digital channels (email, SMS and social media) and found that brands which integrate their marketing activity in a multichannel approach can engage customers more effectively than those that don't.
As a result, the report urges brands that are keen to navigate the digital landscape and understand how to engage with consumers to take into account the following considerations:
- Email Relevance continues to be critical, with targeting based on web analytics leading the way. Consumers expressed the highest willingness to respond to emails including a discount offer for products they had been recently researching online (45%). This was followed by reminder emails regarding shopping baskets that had been filled online but not checked out.
Geographic and demographic targeting is also important, with consumers confirming that they would be more likely to respond to emails relating to products/services available in their area, or to their lifestyle or age group.
- Social media 51% of young people (18-24 year olds) indicated they would be happy to follow brands on social media sites, with the main reasons being to 'find out about sales and special offers' (33%) or to 'hear other users experiences and reviews' (17%).
Brands need to identify and reward advocates that are actively sharing content on social media. This could include sharing new/pre-release information with them first.
Adding an email address collection box on social media networks can provide a noticeable uplift in subscriber bases for future email campaigns, creating long term customer engagement.
- SMS (text messaging) Post purchase, service-based messages are most welcome. These include 'confirmation of a purchase or appointment' (45%) and 'confirmation of a delivery date' (51%).
SMS works very well as a call to action in above-the-line advertising. This is an effective way of generating an immediate response from consumers and of capturing their contact details for future mailings.
Offer-based SMS campaigns are of interest to consumers as long as they are timely and relevant. They can draw on techniques such as geo-fencing to drive local customers in-store.
According to Steve Lomax, managing director for Experian CheetahMail (EMEA), "Brands that intelligently integrate digital channels will be the most effective. It's vital to present customers with the right offer at the right time, and through the right channel mix. When implemented correctly, campaigns that are relevant and timely are likely to generate significantly higher return on investment than standard bulk mailings."