Understanding the consumer’s new path to purchase, which often often involves a digital stage in the process, is important for virtually every firm.
As such, a recent article from McKinsey’s Edwin van Bommel, David Edelman, and Kelly Ungerman gives some valuable insights:
“Many of the executives we speak with in banking, retail, and other sectors are still struggling to devise the perfect cross-channel experiences for their customers — experiences that take advantage of digitization to provide customers with targeted, just-in-time product or service information in an effective and seamless way.”
“To keep up with rapid technology cycles and improve their multiplatform marketing efforts, companies need to take a different approach to managing the consumer decision journey — one that embraces the speed that digitization brings and focuses on capabilities in three areas:”
Discover. Many of the executives we’ve spoken with admit they are still more facile with data capture than data crunching. Companies must apply advanced analytics to the large amount of structured and unstructured data at their disposal to gain a 360-degree view of their customers. Their engagement strategies should be based on an empirical analysis of customers’ recent behaviors and past experiences with the company, as well as the signals embedded in customers’ mobile or social-media data.
Design. Consumers now have much more control over where they will focus their attention, so companies need to craft a compelling customer experience in which all interactions are expressly tailored to a customer’s stage in his or her decision journey.
Deliver. “Always on” marketing programs, in which companies engage with customers in exactly the right way at any contact point along the journey, require agile teams of experts in analytics and information technologies, marketing, and experience design. These cross-functional teams need strong collaborative and communication skills and a relentless commitment to iterative testing, learning, and scaling—at a pace that many companies may find challenging.”