Most coverage of digital transformation refers to its impact on the business as a whole, with marketing as one small part of the discussion.
Digital transformation goals
Nick says that digital marketing transformation aims to reduce expenditures and increase customer retention through the use of digital channels.
These goals can be achieved at a high-level level by following a simple process. Digital transformation transforms the business using digital content, effective structures, talent development, and industry engagement.
Digital transformation can be difficult to achieve in the trenches. This is a complex exercise that requires the commitment of everyone involved in the digital marketing supply chain, including senior management, content producers, data analysts, professionals, IT and HR.
Each of these departments will face its own challenges, wins and losses. The biggest shift for marketers is the digital transformation that changes the core of marketing strategy.
Digital transformation has great marketing potential.
Before going fully digital, marketers tend to focus their strategies on ‘the general customer’.
In this context, a marketing strategy is designed to guide the buyer through each stage of their buying journey. It increases awareness via broadcast channels, stimulates interest through content, communicates value and motivates action with offers,
Nick believes that marketers need to rethink the strategy and the entire marketing model. Instead of guiding a consumer through the buying process, marketers need to devise a strategy that focuses on individual customer journeys.
With their new strategy, marketers need to identify the “inflexion points” that indicate a shift in customers’ needs and a change of aspiration. Nick explained that inflexion points are when marketing can move an individual from being simply aware to being interested, or even from understanding the product’s value to asking how they can sign-up.
Marketers can then use inflexion points or new digital technologies to react immediately to the customer and send the advertisement, email, post, etc. This acknowledges the consumer’s shift in perspective and keeps them engaged.
If a consumer clicks on an advertisement for ‘awareness’ and then scrolls through product information, it should be considered that they are ‘interested. Future advertising, emails and interactions should move them towards a purchase or desire.
This means that marketers can now use digital to structure the conversation to allow each person to get the information they need at every stage of the buyer’s journey.
How marketers can start digital transformation
Nick summarized the steps an organization must take to implement digitally-transformed marketing strategies.
1. Driven by data
Data should be shared across all divisions and with external partners if possible. If data is scattered, it will be difficult for consumers to pinpoint their exact location in the buying process.
2. Powered By Automation
Marketers will need to have a lot of control over their channels to provide a personalized marketing experience. Only then can they identify and control inflexion points to deliver what customers want at every stage.
3. Optimized by analytics
This is useless if you cannot collect and analyze consumer behaviour across digital channels. Iterative changes, gradual improvements, and experimentation contribute to a customer-based marketing strategy.