CRM technology, the emergence of mobile as an important marketing function and the desire to drive up levels of customer engagement – what do these three things have in common?
Rather than being one of the most unwieldy joke set-ups you’ll hear outside of a Stewart Lee set, this is in fact a question facing marketers in both the B2B and B2C sectors.
The role CRM can play in developing mobile marketing strategies is well-documented. Notably, its ability to coalesce various data streams and ensure that customers receive a standardised service across all channels helps streamline the process.
But why go to the trouble? What can mobile marketing add to your business? Especially among millennials, it is rapidly proving an intelligent way to drive up engagement levels.
For instance, a recent study from consumer specialist research company eDigitalResearch found that 45 per cent of mobile consumers are willing to receive retailer messages via beacon technology, which would allow businesses to send personalised information to people while they were shopping.
Interestingly, a third of respondents admitted that this kind of service would be “likely” or “very likely” to be influenced in their purchase decisions by such an approach.
Of those who would be happy to receive messages, 78 per cent would be willing for retailers to use big data to produce more personalised content for them.
CRM could help manage a sales campaign along this lines. It could also be used to ensure that those respondents who were unwilling to be involved in such schemes could opt out easily and effectively, which is crucial – few things have a worse impact on brand reputation than hassling consumers with unwanted emails, texts or calls.
When linked up with iBeacon – which allows marketers to track customers on a locational basis – this could prove a powerful combination.
Derek Eccleston, commercial director at eDigitalResearch, said: “Apple subtly introduced iBeacon technology into the market at the end of 2013. As retailers and brands get to grips with what it is and how it works, consumer opinion demonstrates that it could potentially revolutionise the in-store and high street shopping experience.”
“We found last year that half of smartphone owners regularly shop through retail apps and have them installed on their mobiles. It opens up the potential for retailers to digitally reach outside their stores and tempt smartphone owners in, increasing footfall and, as these results demonstrate, boost their revenue streams.”
Mobile and B2B
This makes a clear case for how mobile CRM can connect with consumers, but does it have similar uses for the B2B marketing sector? Conventional wisdom holds that this area tends to lag behind when it comes to innovative approaches, preferring tried-and-tested methods to reach buyers and clients.
However, this is no longer really the case, and businesses are just as interested in innovation as their counterparts in the general public.
The Internet Advertising Bureau makes this case by pointing out that many B2B marketers are embracing new channels such as mobile and social in a bid to reach the widest possible audience.
“With the impact of the digital revolution, the challenge for the B2B marketing industry is to ensure the wider industry adapts and positions itself for success with this pace of change. Whilst this is a challenge for the B2B industry, it’s a huge opportunity for those who embrace and adapt to the possibilities provided by digital marketing,” said the industry body.
According to its statistics, 80 per cent of B2B firms now use social media to source services or goods, a meteoric rise from the 30 per cent recorded in 2009.
A Concep report recently revealed that 91 per cent of lawyers use smartphones in their practice, which highlights how traditionally staid sectors are throwing off the shackles.
Using CRM technology to manage mobile campaigns in the B2B industry will have many of the same advantages as it does when working with consumers – well-targeted, well-managed processes will always succeed over slipshod ones.
Learn more about how CRM can drive up customer engagement levels through the use of mobile, social and more.
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