Despite the rhetoric around the importance of customer experience, just nine per cent of marketers in a recent survey said they have engineered seamless experiences across online and offline channels, suggesting more of a channel-centric approach.
Raleigh, N.C.-based customer data platform vendor BlueVenn partnered with London Research for its report, Omnichannel Marketing Strategies, which is based on a global survey of 235 organizations with annual revenues of at least $50M.
As might be expected, the research attempts to highlight the value of adopting a CDP. The study showed, for instance, that organizations with CDPs are almost twice as likely to have fully synchronized cross-channel communications that are coordinated over time and tailored to match consumers’ needs, at 40 per cent vs. 24 per cent for non-CDP users.
Overall, though, the report also showed nearly half, or 45 per cent of brands are activity using customer journey mapping in some form. Perhaps because many of those initiatives are still in their early days, though, only a fifth , or 21 per cent, of those surveyed said they are designing integrated, omnichannel customer experiences across the customer lifecycle and at every touchpoint.
In a forward to the report, BlueVenn CEO Steve Klin suggested that CDP adoption has to come in tandem with a cultural shift within organizations to establish specific CX roles and departments. The 17 per cent of those who say they do this today is nowhere near good enough.
“This failing will continue to obstruct many marketers from realizing their goal of omnichannel excellence, and means that marketing systems and processes remain fragmented and channel-focused,” Klin wrote.
The report authors from London Research echoed this message, adding that senior leadership involvement should not be treated as a “vanity consideration” but an essential element in a CX strategy.
“This ‘bottom-up’ coordination across channel teams will only flourish with clear ‘top-down’ direction and, ideally, hands-on, direct participation, from an executive-level sponsor,” the report said. “Clearly, executive-level business ownership is a critical factor in driving the scale of change required.”
360 Magazine Insight
Selling the enterprise on CDPs is not an easy job. About a year ago I talked to a Forrester analyst focused in this area who admitted there are still disputes about what truly constitutes a full-fledged CDP vs. a point product. This report is canny in aligning the data to support adoption with the organizational challenges involved in a more over-arching CX strategy.
Though I didn’t come across the actual title of “Chief Customer Officer,” the report leaves no question that marketing is the best function to execute on the insights a CDP could offer. It wasn’t entirely clear if the executive sponsor should have marketing report in, or simply partner with them:
This customer champion can provide a focal point for the enterprise-wide digital transformation program that is required to deliver seamless cross-channel experiences, to drive differentiation, advocacy and competitive advantage.
Honestly, that job description could work not only for a CCO but a CIO or even the CEO. There’s plenty in this report that shows how CDPs will deliver insights that feed into a variety of disciplines. If nothing else, this could help fuel discussions for who that owner should be.
Shane Schick tells stories that help people innovate, and to manage the change innovation brings. He is the former Editor-in-Chief of Marketing magazine and has also been Vice-President, Content & Community (Editor-in-Chief), at IT World Canada, a technology columnist with the Globe and Mail and Yahoo Canada and is the founding editor of ITBusiness.ca. Shane has been recognized for journalistic excellence by the Canadian Advanced Technology Alliance and the Canadian Online Publishing Awards.