Marketing: In Our World of Data, Be the Human Touch on bdex.com

Marketing: In Our World of Data, Be the Human Touch

The future is in people-based marketing, which targets individuals no matter the device they’re using

The modern consumer doesn’t just connect with brands via their smartphone or desktop computer. GlobalWebIndex says a typical digital consumer owns 3.23 devices, and MarTech Advisor says by 2030, there will be 15 connected devices for every consumer.

What does this mean for marketers? That it’s more important than ever to target the individual, across the devices that he or she may be used in a given time period. Human connectivity is crucial.

But that human touch is missing from many marketers’ strategies. Here’s why people-based marketing is the future and how you can create that necessary human connection in your efforts.

People are the future of marketing

Because the modern consumer uses a variety of devices, this means they may see an ad on their smartphone, then view a website on their laptop, then actually make a purchase on a tablet. This is multi-channel shopping, which has created a challenge for marketers who are trying to track consumer behavior.

Cookie-based marketing isn’t always effective in this kind of environment since this approach doesn’t “differentiate situations,” as Instapage puts it. With traditional marketing approaches, actionable customer information could be lost if the user isn’t tracked effectively, making each of those valuable connections to your website or products seem unrelated – and leaving you with an underwhelming marketing strategy.

Multi-channel marketing for multi-channel customers

Instead, marketers need to gather customer data from a variety of sources, both offline and online, to create a comprehensive profile that’s sufficiently accurate to better reach customers across devices. Users need to be tracked across multiple channels, which is why people-based marketing is also called cross-channel marketing or multi-channel marketing. It just makes sense—a multi-channel shopper will be the most effectively reached by a multi-channel marketing approach.

The idea is that if a consumer is watching television while engaging with social media on a smartphone, these experiences are able to be linked, producing real-time data that can help companies market to the consumer based on their actual current behavior. This is important, as Consumer Technology Association reported that the majority of millennials (88 percent) engage with a second screen while watching video content.

Cross-device identification is thus a must if marketers want to engage with first-party data, such as social media logins, instead of just third-party data such as cookies, as Inc.com points out.

An effective strategy would be to show consumers personalized ads and experiences across their devices based on their past viewing history and interests, using real ID information. And ID personalization is key – an ad by itself across devices won’t mean anything to a consumer unless it’s actually related to what they’ve shown an interest in.

Stats show people-based marketing works

Over the past couple of years, people-based marketing has proven extremely effective for marketers. Recent data shows that 83 percent of media buyers say this marketing strategy is more effective than traditional campaigns. This is why almost all media buyers (90 percent) have increased their people-based ad purchases over the last year.

According to an Accenture report, 91 percent of consumers are more likely to buy from brands that provide relevant offers to them. Other recent research shows that consumers are much more likely to buy from brands that offer personalized experiences for them.

To stay competitive, it’s important to start implementing a cross-channel marketing strategy. With all the different ways people are marketed to these days, the modern consumer cares about that human touch.

The BDEX difference: empowering human connectivity

BDEX solutions allow you to implement a people-based marketing strategy that connects you to individuals. Using our cross-device matching service, you can reach the same consumer across multiple channels, whether mobile, direct mail, social media, or other means. We bring you over 800 million mobile-to-email ID connections, making our solution the most comprehensive option out there.

Our real-time targeting tools allow you to get real-time data about individuals so you can implement up-to-the-minute marketing to better reach customers who are ready to buy.

No matter the type of enterprise you run, the BDEX Data Exchange Platform (DXP) allows you to pull together the data you need about individuals. All you have to do is figure out the type of user you’d like to reach, whether via mobile, email or direct mail, and you can select from nearly 500 different industries. We make it easy to reach your ideal audience and empower you to make real human connections.

To learn more about the DXP and our cross-device matching service, get in touch with the team at BDEX.

People-Based Marketing: What Is It and How Does It Work? on bdex.com

People-Based Marketing: What Is It and How Does It Work?

People-based marketing is here right now. So long as you understand that, you have the advantage

That’s right. The power of human connectivity, the proliferation of connected devices, and how both of these have affected individuals’ media consumption and purchasing behaviors means that people-based marketing is a fact, and there are the knowers and the know-nots. It’s not some far-off “in the future” dream, like something out of “Minority Report.” It’s here. Right now.

So, now that you know, you can begin to use the power of people-based marketing for your company.

Why is people-based marketing such a big deal?

Well, it all comes down to boxes. Since the dawn of radio in the early 1920s, all media has been consumed from a box. For most of the last hundred years, we sat in our living rooms and stared at our radios, then at our boxy TVs. Even the ads we encountered in magazines and newspapers came in boxes. The point is that when we consumed most media (and therefore most advertising), we did it in front of a specific device or setting – holding a newspaper or watching a TV.

So, we marketed to people through these boxes, and we chose those people by the very coarse means of selecting programming and content that probably appealed to the “target consumer”: people of a certain age range, sex, possible interests, and income. This is how it came to pass that lots of light beer were sold to men ages 21 to 45, with median household incomes (HHIs) of $25,000, via the adventures of “The Dukes of Hazzard.”

Even when the internet came on the scene, we consumed it on yet another box – our computers, which mostly sat on desks. Digital marketing became (and, in some ways, remains to this day) putting ads in boxes on web pages targeted in much the same ways as they captured the dudes watching “The Dukes of Hazzard.”

Then the iPhone came out

When the iPhone launched in 2007, it liberated digital media from the desktop – it was set free from the box. It also was the start of digital media invading and taking over traditional media. Today, digital media encompasses all the individual media of the past in one online universe: TV, radio, print, and film, along with social, and e-Commerce.

Today people live much of their lives online. It’s where they watch, read, listen to, and buy. Their hobbies, their interests, and their work lives revolve around the web and their mobile devices. And the resulting data is a bonanza to marketers.

Digital marketing begins to mature into a people-based marketing

This relatively new world of widespread human connectivity means we can leverage the avalanche of data available concerning consumer behavior. Advances in data and analytics make this all a tantalizing reality, enabling marketers to merge all they know about a customer with what others know to connect with and engage that individual. By doing so skillfully, we can target specific consumers – in an anonymous, unobtrusive fashion – across various media and devices to provide them with marketing that is relevant and timely, not intrusive or disruptive.

To illustrate, imagine past marketing efforts as someone standing on a street corner hawking balloons at the top of their lungs to passersby. Now, compare that with a professional salesperson who, having just sold a pantsuit to a repeat customer whose tastes they are familiar with, suggests, “You know, I have the perfect pair of patent leather pumps to go with this.” That add-on item doubles the sale – and in the process, it makes the customer even more loyal than they were before. People-based marketing is being able to do this with customers across the globe whom you’ve never met.

Marketing and sales online can and will be just as charming, subtle and engaging as the best sales associate in the world. And relationships between online vendors and their customers will be defined by more than a race to the bottom, where making a sale means almost just breaking even on the transaction. The most successful purveyors of goods and services online will be those who know their customers best and can speak to them most persuasively, at the right time. And the data is there to make that possible.

Taking people-based marketing too far

Knowledge is power, but a deft hand with the subtle application of the increasing wealth of data is key to the ongoing development of successful people-based marketing. The more granular the data available, and the more specifically businesses can target a consumer, the more care must be taken with how that data is used.

Employed carelessly, people-based marketing may incite consumer backlash by igniting fears of a surveillance culture that doesn’t respect privacy. This could result in a reduction of actionable data available and deprive marketers of a tool that has changed their everything.

Having access to the data is not enough. Knowing how to use it effectively and with great care is also paramount. You can count on BDEX to help you use your own data and the information on the network to further genuine human connectivity and close sales with a customer base willing to reward the extra attention.

BDEX endows your marketing with the power and depth of human connectivity. Call 917-410-6616 or contact us to learn how marketing solutions from BDEX can help you with your present and future marketing data needs.

Marketing Culture 2.0: Data Analytics on bdex.com

Marketing Culture 2.0: Data Analytics

A look at updates organizations must make culturally to compete in today’s real-time marketplace, where the focus is human connectivity

Customer data is driving marketing into the future. But even the most tech-savvy marketing office won’t fully succeed when analyzing data without also integrating big changes into its company culture.

Data is valuable; there’s no doubt about that. But without using it to its full potential, businesses miss out on many crucial improvements to business strategy, including, most importantly, fostering real human connections.

A Forrester survey revealed that companies that integrate an advanced analytics culture increased their marketing ROI by an average of 9.1 percent over the last one to two years. This improved performance 1.7 times for these companies versus those that didn’t have an advanced analytics culture.

These considerations clearly matter for the bottom line. Here are ways that organizations can harness data to its full potential.

Updating company analytics culture

A greater focus on company culture is a major part of using data analytics successfully. It’s not enough to use the newest tools and technologies; the team must collaborate and learn together how data push the business forward.

Across the company, the key components of a successful analytics culture are, according to Forrester:

  • Strategy. This requires business leaders to use data insights to drive decision-making. Data should be included in all marketing channels.
  • Adoption. Marketing strategy that is driven by data insights must be considered a business growth driver across the company.
  • Turning insights into action. The team must be able to interpret data and use it quickly.
  • Tech and tools. Data must come from various sources, and tools must be implemented that provide clear and distinguishable facts about the data.
  • Data science expertise. The team must be able to weed through large amounts of data and have the expertise required to use the insights for future predictions.

Because using customer data to drive marketing strategy is so multifaceted, it’s clear that doing so successfully requires much more than bringing new platforms into the office. An effective analytics culture must be learned and implemented across teams and experience levels so decisions can be driven efficiently by real-time data insights.

Integrate data in a decision-making

Company leaders may not be fully using data and relevant customer-insight teams to make decisions. The Forrester surveyors concluded that companies that involve customer insights and data teams into decision-making for marketing show a stronger analytics culture overall than those that don’t.

This is why customer insights and data should be directly connected to marketing decision-making. Business outcomes are improved when decisions are made based on facts and real-time insights. The majority of companies surveyed by Forrester (81 percent) that use data to drive their decision-making processes saw better business outcomes and reported improvements in marketing performance.

Companies should, therefore, focus on educating employees so everyone is aligned on driving decisions from analytics, and teams must then come together behind this practice. Decisions should be backed up by facts pulled from data, and this should become the minimum expectation.

Fostering real human connection

One of the biggest benefits of fully integrating data analytics is the human component. Companies using real-time customer data are able to make immediate, relevant connections with their audience.

It’s important to note that customers shouldn’t be treated like data figures or numbers; for companies to effectively use real-time customer insights, they must connect on an individual and human level. This means decisions should be well thought-through and based on data, but they should also have a basis of underlying trust that drives relationships, as Inc.com points out.

This thinking continues to drive the age-old idea that the customer should be No. 1 in any marketing strategy, digital or not.

Mastering analytics

The Forrester survey also indicated that there were clear advantages for companies that had actually mastered measurement and analytics, over those that had just started implementing such programs. One company surveyed reported a 30 percent reduction in customer acquisition cost that was directly attributable to the company’s increased focus on analytics.

These “mastering” companies were shown to have “nearly 3x improvement in business decision-making speed and time-to-market with new products, higher marketing ROI, greater marketing efficiency, and new customer insights.”

The benefits of revamping analytics company culture are clear. Knowledge is power, and data is behind all valuable marketing information in our modern world. Data should begin to drive business decisions, which will ultimately improve business outcomes, valuable customer connections, flexibility, credibility, and ROI.

BDEX provides advanced data infrastructure that drives human connectivity. The BDEX Data Exchange Platform (DXP) provides data as a service (DaaS) and real-time data signals so you can target consumers with the latest information. Get in touch today to learn more about BDEX’s advanced data solutions for marketers.

How Technologies May Change How Marketing Data Is Gathered and Used on bdex.com

How Technologies May Change How Marketing Data Is Gathered and Used

Today’s ubiquity of connected devices is such that, even for those of us from a past without email, it’s hard to imagine life without them. Companies should use caution to avoid marketing missteps.

If we take today as an admittedly arbitrary starting point, what could the next 20 years bring? In 1999, Google was less than a year old, and Yahoo was still the dominant search engine. Apple released the iBook, the first Wi-Fi-enabled notebook computer.

Comparing the technological landscape of 1999 to today and projecting that rate of change to the world of 2039, it’s difficult to imagine how the future will look. One thing, though, is certain: For the marketing world, the emerging opportunities are equal parts exciting and perilous.

Looking forward to a continuing increase in human connectivity

Two things we can be sure of in the years ahead are the continued increase of human connectivity to a global network of information, entertainment, and commerce, and the continuing rise of machine learning and AI. The combination of these two factors presents new opportunities and challenges to market researchers.

Increased human connectivity to the network will bring with it a data bonanza the likes of which we have never seen. Without the concurrent rise of machine learning, we would not be able to make sense of it all. The incidence of these two factors will bring about a golden age of individually tailored marketing that will seamlessly integrate itself into a user’s buying behavior as they transact business online. Marketing will dynamically adjust to the buyer’s shopping patterns and buying behaviors in such a way as to appear serendipitous.

Data-driven eCommerce opportunities

Imagine shopping at Saks Fifth Avenue’s eCommerce site for a Calvin Klein buckle-strap sheath dress in Summer Yellow. You make the purchase and then open Instagram to check in on your friends, and as you scroll through, you find a photo of the perfect crossbody handbag in a coordinating navy blue. Just a click, and you’re looking at it on the Zaful.com online store. Five minutes later, the bag is on its way to you, and you have no idea you were just sold.

Sophisticated AI used a combination of a color-coordinating accessory-suggestion algorithm and prior analysis of your fashion purchasing habits to make the accessory appear for you. The whole experience might have felt no more intrusive than if an in-the-flesh salesperson showed you the perfect bag for the lovely dress you just picked up.

Don’t make consumers keep looking over their shoulder

A deft touch with these advances will not only be desirable but necessary. The alternative is a version of today’s remarketing efforts amped-up on steroids – ads reactively appearing immediately for every item browsed, every cart abandoned, every word uttered within earshot of a smart speaker. Imagine asking your partner for a stick of gum and then looking at your smartwatch, only to find a banner ad for the latest neutrino-mint-flavored chewing gum there. The banner might as well as say, “Big Marketing Brother Is Watching.”

That’s one of the biggest challenges that marketers will face in the coming age of hyperconnectivity. Collecting every available bit of consumer data and using it without any thought given to how invasive and pushy the use may come off to consumers could lead to a destructive backlash. With companies like Apple pushing privacy protection and giving consumers more options to opt out of data collection, misuse of future data acquisition and handling tech could lead to a drought of data. Those marketers who employ intelligence coupled with restraint will be positioned to reap the benefits: a wealth of actionable data on consumer buying habits and the graceful marketing tactics that encourage purchase without the perception of “digital hard-selling.”

The lessons of a possible future

These are lessons worth taking to heart today. For the future always arrives gradually, until suddenly one looks around and realizes that the future is – how’d that happen? – now. Those marketers who seek to harness the full power of data – yet with the foresight to use that information in thoughtful and clever ways that don’t heighten consumer concerns – are the same ones who will prosper in a coming online world that is data-rich, yet also more surveillance-sensitive.

BDEX endows your marketing with the power and depth of human connectivity. Call 917-410-6616 or contact us to learn how marketing solutions from BDEX can help you with your present and future marketing data needs.

Marketing: How Data Drives Human Connectivity on bdex.com

Marketing: How Data Drives Human Connectivity

Big brands are using data to build better connections with their customers. Learn why user data is now a crucial part of any brand’s marketing strategy, and how the BDEX DXP drives human connectivity

Many major brands out there are using data analytics to gain valuable insights from what people are buying, their interactions with products, and other shopping behaviors. These data points then inform how they structure their marketing tactics, and the customer remains the most important part of their strategy.

But these companies often have just one way of connecting to customers, whether with email newsletters or through their website. These brands may know that data collection is important, but they don’t know how to use it to the best of their advantage. Savvy operators are finding ways to match user IDs across channels instead of just interacting one way.

Here are examples of how brands are using data in their marketing strategies to develop crucial new opportunities for connection.

Pinpointing what drives customers’ behaviors

Data analytics can now provide invaluable insight into not just what users do, but what they want. A great example of this in action is the company Stitch Fix. This online clothing retailer sends personalized boxes to customers with different clothing and fashion items, and customers can pick and choose what they keep from the selection.

Stitch Fix has implemented advanced data technology that allows them to see what the customer has been shopping for, what they actually end up buying, and what they don’t keep from the preselected bundle. The company’s technology is also able to show them why the customer chose not to keep certain items.

Homing in on user preferences

Many big brands, such as Netflix and Coca-Cola, gather as much data as they can from the customer by asking them questions along their product path. Netflix sends suggestions to users for movies and television shows based on what they’ve watched in the past. Netflix can then see what their users choose to watch and what their preferences are, and use that information to inform their strategy. This helps brands create successfully targeted ads.

Location-based targeting

Another benefit of using data in marketing strategy is the ability to adapt products to a specific demographic, living in a specific location across the globe.

For example, Adidas released running shoes that are specifically made for runners living in big cities. They used data such as weather patterns and terrain to design shoes that inhabitants would be drawn to.

Survey data

Another effective way to gather and use customer data is through survey research. This approach can reveal something as simple as a flavor preference across a population.

Mars and Alibaba paired up to evaluate consumer research using a survey, in tandem with Alibaba’s user data, which ended up showing that their consumers wanted more spicy flavors. They created a fiery version of the Snickers bar to meet this growing preference.

Integrating humorous trends

Two big brands used data to discover that their users are quirky, so they cranked up the humor in their marketing campaigns. OkCupid found when mining through user data that 888,000 usernames contained the word “cat,” outnumbering the dog lovers. The online dating company used the data in an entertaining blog post to explain why they ended the use of usernames in their app.

Spotify found that many of their listeners create weird playlist names and exhibit odd music preferences, so they build campaigns to play on that tendency. One of their ad campaigns, for instance, honored “the 3,445 people who streamed the ‘Boozy Brunch’ playlist on a Wednesday this year.”

These are great examples of how brands are using data to truly connect with their customers. Using humor can be a fun and effective strategy to connect with people of any generation.

How BDEX can help

At BDEX, our data helps power human connectivity. The BDEX Data Exchange Platform (DXP) can use customer IDs to create a multichannel strategy for companies to better reach their audience, whether through social platforms, email, mobile or postal – not just through a single venue.

The BDEX DXP is simple to use: You just decide if you want to reach mobile, email, and/or other user types, and you choose from nearly 500 different industries and over 5,500 different categories. We have over 900 billion data signals from consumers in the U.S., and those customer IDs can be linked across platforms with our 800 million connections between email, mobile, and cookie IDs.

Our platform helps brands connect with their ideal audience, making real-time targeting that much more efficient. Keep putting the customer first and fostering those valuable human connections with BDEX DXP.

To learn more about our data, get in touch with our team.

Restaurant Marketing: How to Use Real-Time Data to Increase Loyalty on bdex.com

Restaurant Marketing: How to Use Real-Time Data to Increase Loyalty

Readily available data can help restaurants connect with their customers and strengthen those relationships online – which can be key to remaining competitive

The competitive landscape for restaurants is as intense as ever. No eatery – whether chain or “mom and pop” – can afford to ignore the wealth of data that can help them create and maintain ongoing customer relationships.

At BDEX, we consider this a principle: The more competitive an industry is, the more those in it will need real-time data to enrich those customer relationships. And when we think of competitive business segments, few can beat the restaurant game, with its endless number and variety of competitors.

The winners in any marketplace are the ones who dynamically identify customer wants and needs and fulfill those desires elegantly. But whether it’s an established local chain or the new upscale brasserie in town, how can a restaurant hope to contend with big brands – on both the low and high end – that can dedicate considerable sums to their data-gathering efforts?

First, size isn’t everything

A local restaurant or small chain – where the owners are often on premises and the staff is encouraged to bond with and get to know the patrons – is better able to form real person-to-person relationships with them. This gives them a significant advantage over the large national chains when it comes to creating customer loyalty.

Smaller operations are also closer to the ground. The person using the data is far less removed from the customer than the people running that competing chain from a distant corporate office. This gives small restaurants or groups a massive advantage because when they get their hands on the data, they can understand how it applies to the real world and gain actionable insights from it.

That puts them way ahead of most companies. Case in point: A study from Forrester and DataStax found that 95 percent of companies can’t make sense of customer data and struggle to get much meaningful insight from it.

Fostering “Human Connectivity”

It’s probably a good bet that any successful restaurateur is a good host, adept at making people feel welcome and connecting with them. An effective customer marketing plan supercharges that ability by enabling them to connect beyond their doors and invite customers to come back for new dining experiences.

That begins with the customer list, which operators can cull from point-of-sale data. Transaction data can give restaurants a picture of those patrons, revealing how often they dine at the restaurant, how much they spend, what time of the day they prefer, whether they tend to order from the wine list and those who have visited just once.

By matching that list to customers’ online accounts, restaurants can:

  • Connect with them online, through such avenues as social media, email, and newsletters, as well as offline.
  • Tailor marketing messages to the customer’s profile to entice them to come in more often.
  • Keep the lines of communication open between visits, and even create an opt-in email list that will keep the eatery’s biggest fans in the know on its latest offerings, promotions, and general news.
  • Through geofencing, restaurants can use location data to know when customers, or even prospective diners, are nearby and then make efforts to get them to visit.

The most successful restaurant operations will use data to cultivate repeat customers and keep them loyal – which is one of the first things investors look for. Being able to connect with your diners often means they’ll visit more often, spend more and refer their friends and colleagues. That means, of course, more customers. And in such a competitive industry, that can translate to not only surviving but thriving.

BDEX is committed to building the data infrastructure restaurants need to power human connectivity. Call 917-410-6616 or use our website contact form to learn how marketing solutions from BDEX can help you reach out to your best customers and keep them in the fold.