As a marketer, you’re being challenged to increase your communications’ volume, effectiveness, and personalization, often with smaller teams than 5 years ago. 2024 will be an opportunistic yet challenging time of change and growth for marketing teams, requiring a critical investment of time, energy, and partnership from your IT team or an outsourced partner.
Why are IT Departments Now Critical to any Marketing Team’s Success?
To create personalized experiences, you need to unify your customer data. You can gain valuable insights into your customers’ needs and expectations by bringing together all the relevant data, such as behavior, preferences, and demographics.
With access to unified customer data, you can tailor your communications and experiences to each customer, increasing engagement and satisfaction.
Your Customer Relationship Management System or Association Management System Is Not The Solution
Your current Customer Relationship Management System (CRM) or Association Management System (AMS) system can limit your ability to personalize customer experiences. This is because these systems are often siloed, making it difficult to integrate data from other sources, such as your website, Learning Management System (LMS), social media, and email marketing platform.
To move beyond the limitations of silo’d systems, it’s essential to work with your IT team to create a unified customer database that brings together data from all these sources. Creating an actionable unified customer database is a collaborative effort between your marketing team and IT department.
To get started, the marketing team needs to define a clear vision of personalization with specific personalization scenarios, and the information marketing team would need to build those scenarios. Through scenario building, marketers will be better equipped to describe the type of triggers (events) that will drive personalization and the customer attributes (traits) that will be used to build dynamic personalization audiences and campaigns.
By providing these scenarios, attributes, and triggers to your IT team, they can focus their data unification efforts on actionable data instead of simply collecting a large swath of data in an unusable format/storage area.
It’s Time For A Customer Data Platform (CDP)
Customer Data Platforms have grown in market share rapidly due to their ability to unify data across disparate systems, reduce silo’d storage areas, and relate each piece of data to a single unique customer/individual. In addition, these systems demystify who customers are through their identity unification solutions, finally deanonymizing website visitors.
Using the Unified Customer Data
Once IT has connected your data to a Customer Data Platform (CDP), the final step of your Marketing and IT partnership is to connect it to your marketing automation solution. The basic concept is that your CDP will allow you to build dynamic audiences and send those with personalized details (attributes) to your Marketing Automation System, which can then deploy personalized campaigns to individuals.
This final step is when your marketing automation team moves beyond individual campaign building into ongoing personalization campaigns.
Personalization Starts with a Partnership
Scaling personalization starts with a strong partnership with IT, building the business case together to justify the investment in unifying customer data, to create a more efficient, effective, and scalable marketing personalization program.