[TRIBUNE] Data-driven marketing: a concrete solution to combat declining in-store traffic

Written by David Le Douarin on May 4, 2020 11:41:47 AM

Customers' buying patterns have been disrupted by new technologies and, faced with a drop in traffic in their stores, retailers have increased advertising pressure - email, retargeting, etc. - and have made massive use of promotional campaigns. Unfortunately these practices have led them into a destructive spiral of margin and brand image.

This marketing overpressure has also led to a certain aversion among consumers to e-mail and, inevitably, day by day, fewer and fewer e-mails are opened and customer contactability is in freefall.

Whereas, just a few years ago, communications sent by retailers were opened by 30 to 40% of their target audience, today, the most successful retailers have opening rates that barely reach 15 or 20%.

These observations reveal the urgency for retailers to extricate themselves from this mass, polluting and intrusive marketing, to find accuracy and relevance, both in the way they think about their CRM actions but also in the precise discourse they address to their customers.

Restoring CRM Performance

If we study the brands that manage to capitalize on their CRM data and increase traffic and turnover in their points of sale, we can see that they have worked on 3 axes at the same time: the volume of contactable customers, the rate of responsiveness of these customers and conversion rate optimization , whether it is achieved online or in-store.

The CRM impact can then be defined as the product of these 3 variables:

CRM turnover = Volume of contactable customers x Responsiveness of contacted customers x Conversion of activated customers.

These successful brands have therefore provided concrete and operational responses to these 3 challenges:

1. Responding to declining contactability

By being able to establish the link between CRM identifier and navigation cookies, the marketing teams of the brands are able to find their customers on the digital channel in order to open new points of contact with them. They can then talk to them where they are today, where their purchasing decision is being made.

It is on social networks or search engines that marketers will bypass the barrier of opt-in e-mail and low contactability, by pushing messages to each targeted customer on Facebook, Instagram or Google which are dedicated to him/her, when the time is right.

In this way, retailers can contact on average 4 times more people than they would have done with a simple e-mail campaign, thus maximizing their ability to speak and the reach of their messages.

2. Responding to decreased responsiveness

In order to respond to the decline in the responsiveness of email campaigns, marketers must be able to identify the various pretenses for a meaningful communication with the customer for whom it is intended. These pretenses can be of different nature and will have only one purpose: to incite the individual to click and go to the website to conceive and prepare a purchase. 

  • Indeed, we can leverage the "hot pretenses" linked to the consumer's navigation in real time: by reconciling offline and online data beforehand, we know who this Internet user is who is browsing the site, what their purchase history is, what they are looking at at the moment and therefore send them the right message with the right product recommendations, for example.
  • On the other hand, one can also take into account the "cold" pretenses that are linked to the customer's life cycle and the history of their relationship with the brand. For example, a new customer, who has just bought for the first time in my store, offers many opportunities to speak up. I can tell them the story of my brand, or give them advice on how to use or maintain the product they have just bought... Based on a detailed analysis of their CRM database, the marketer can identify several audiences (very good customers, occasional customers, churners...), to whom they will address them in a differentiated way, with an individualized message, in line with the profile of each consumer.
  • Finally, we can also identify exogenous pretenses linked to the consumer's context and environment. The weather is the simplest example: if I know that it will be 40° in Nice next weekend, it's time to go and promote my collection of tank tops to my customers in Nice... Whether it's the weather or various events planned nearby, we must, as soon as possible, place the marketing message in the current context of the consumer we want to activate in order to bring relevance to the message and the offer proposed to the consumer.

3. Responding to falling conversion rates

The last link in the CRM impact, conversion is without a doubt the most crucial since it brings the final value. Here again, individualized marketing and personalization allow marketers to optimize the conversion rate of their campaigns by proposing to each of their customers the offers that are most relevant to them and the products that are closest to the needs they express.

Complementary, similar products... this product customization once again draws on all the data available to retailers, who can, thanks to artificial intelligence and models, predict, in light of the customer's past or current behavior, exactly what they are interested in today and what they might be interested in tomorrow.

In conclusion, in order to maximize the impact of CRM actions, it is obvious that it is necessary to first better understand the new purchasing paths of its customers, to have a thorough knowledge of its customers thanks to studies such as RFM segmentation, transition matrixes, ROPO studies, ... for example.

Entering the era of individualized marketing 

These CRM analyses will enrich the relationship with the consumer: we are entering the era of individualized marketing, which takes on its full meaning when it makes use of both CRM data and speech pretenses related to the consumer's navigation, context and environment.

Topics: Retail, individualized marketing, CRM

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