Foreword

The customer imperative

CMOs need to own the experience of acquiring customers, turning them into successful customers, and ultimately helping them to become brand advocates.

Often, that success follows from creating highly personalised customer experience — a simple enough concept, even if the delivery can seem complex. That’s because, for many brands, such an approach is truly transformational.

Research by the Economist’s Economic Intelligence Unit, which was sponsored by Marketo, identified five key trends a truly CX-focused CMO needs to understand:

  • CMOs own the customer experience full stop. Eighty-six percent of CMOs and senior marketing executives believe they will own the end-to-end customer experience by 2020.
  • Marketing complexity is growing sharply. As customer experience overtakes mass advertising as a preferred channel to the customer, CMOs must learn to manage staggering amounts of complexity.
  • Top marketing channels are those that lend themselves to personalising the customer experience. The top channels to the customer in 2020 will be social media (63% of respondents), the world wide web (53%), mobile apps (47%), and mobile web (46%). Publishing-centric channels like television, radio and print scored far lower.
  • Customer experience drives brand equity more than ever. CMOs are betting that a personalised, efficient and consistent customer experience will translate into customer loyalty and brand value. Marketers listed raising customer loyalty and better brand experience perception as the two top benefits (both 53%) they aim to realise through a more positive customer experience.
  • Future innovation will focus on small screens and no screens. Mobile devices and networks (59%), personalisation technologies (45%) and the Internet of Things (39%) are the three technology-specific trends that will have the biggest impact on marketing organisations by 2020.

In this edition of the ADMA Almanac, customer experience takes the star billing — just as it does in the day-to-day lives of today’s CMOs.

Marketing has outgrown its stereotype as the acquisition engine. The role of marketing is quickly growing to encompass the entire customer lifecycle: acquisition, retention, and loyalty. Marketo helps power this transition by giving marketers a single platform to manage through these stages. We truly believe that the customer creates their own buying journey, not the marketer. As the only fully integrated engagement platform available in the market, Marketo allows the marketer to listen to their customer, learn their interaction preferences, and then engage them in the preferred way. This creates an authentic and real relationship with buyers.

No company sets out to deliver poor experiences, but getting the best outcome for customers is more than simply a platform choice away (as important as this is). Often, the very culture of the business — and the way it thinks about its customers — needs to change.