How to Have More Meaningful Interactions with Customers

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In the battle to attract and retain new customers, competition is inevitable. When consumers research their next big purchase, they have access to numerous options when it comes to brands and products – it can be a challenge for brands to ensure they are seen. Not to mention, people consume information through a variety of channels – whether it’s on mobile, desktop and broadcast, among other channels.

For example, a teen watching TV at home might see an ad for a new fall coat, and come across an ad for the same coat on social media later that afternoon. These interactions might prompt her to visit her nearest department store over the weekend, where she comes across a competitor’s ad for a new fleece jacket. But, feeling more connected with the ads from the first brand, she continues with her original purchase.

So, how can brands ensure they make a similar connection with customers? Each interaction with the above consumer results in a different data point and digital footprint. Individually, these data points are rendered useless. But, if brands can understand the collection of touchpoints and accurately identify people, they can make the right marketing decisions and have a more meaningful conversation the next time a consumer browses the Internet or shops in store. Identity resolution is the key.

Simply put, identity resolution is the ability to stitch together and unify names, addresses, emails, device IDs, cookies, and other identifiers associated with customers so that the brand can have a more meaningful interaction with the individual – and vice versa. Identity is the foundation of any successful business in today’s competitive business landscape. Experian’s latest white paper, “Connecting the Dots of Consumer Identity,” provides an in-depth look at the role identity plays in marketing and advertising, as well as how brands should link together disparate systems of audience insights and engagement to foster a more relevant omni-channel customer experience. While it’s not an easy task, it’s become an increasingly important component for customer retention, especially when consumers’ expectations and interests are continuously evolving.

…only 15 percent of businesses are able to identify their audiences accurately and consistently.

However, despite the fact that identity is a prerequisite for marketing analytics, orchestration and execution, many businesses still struggle to know their consumers. According to research from the Data and Marketing Association (DMA) and Winterberry Group, only 15 percent of businesses are able to identify their audiences accurately and consistently. Fifty-eight percent of companies have intensified their focus on identity over the past year, while nearly half reported that their organization will invest more in identity solutions over the next 12 months. Experian’s research and white paper emphasize that when a business does not accurately identify its consumers, it results in unreliable and incorrect data, wasted media spend, and poor customer experiences.

Most marketers have access to massive amounts of data, but data alone is not enough. Successful marketers leverage a single customer view to analyze this data, activate on this data and create more relevant customer experiences. Based on recent research from Experian, 60 percent of organizations plan to prioritize the customer experience, however, 92 percent of businesses still don’t have a single customer view today.

Businesses need to capitalize on the right tools and identity resolution partner to ensure they make the most of this data they collect.

As marketers, we all understand the importance of having a single customer view to form the identity layer – after all, it is likely among the most valuable assets we have, and at the core of every marketing activity. The ability to identify customers is how brands generate and develop more meaningful interactions with them and tell a consistent story across devices. Once a solid foundation of identity is in place, all marketing activities become better informed, more efficient, and most of all, can delight customers, build greater loyalty and ensure a company’s success. To continue evolving, brands need to leverage the power of data and technology to make the right marketing decisions and better identify and connect with people.

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