The goal of marketing is pretty simple: communicate with the right person in the right place at the right time. But, to be fair, our jobs as marketers are difficult. The average marketing team is working in 15 different marketing systems across 11 different channels. That’s a lot of pieces to coordinate!

While it’s great to get your message right for each segment, we have to make each system work in concert. In my view, that’s why two things are critical:

  1. Being able to pull our data together around a single identifier that links all of our systems
  2. Reducing our segmentation down to simple indicators that can be passed to each system easily

During our recent Journey Summit, the only thought leadership event focusing on major-life purchase (MLP) marketing, we spent time discussing indicators that identify our audience. The shopping journeys for MLPs—things like mortgages, insurance, cars, degrees, houses—typically take weeks or months. And while demographic data helps, the key to creating better customer experiences is utilizing behavioral indicators that tell us when someone is ready to buy or not in-market.  

Increasing Profit

There’s been a lot of talk about personalization over the last few years, which is just a fancy way of saying that we should be getting better at segmentation and message delivery. It’s the who and how we should be talking to our customers. According to McKinsey, you can expect to deliver 5-8x marketing ROI and often as much as a 10% lift in total sales when you get it right.

If we can narrow down the audience, we’re able to create much better experiences. If we can get the right people in the right places, we can spend our money in the right ways. We’ve got to embrace a mission of creating great customer experiences. While it’s going to be a little bit different for every company, we have a simple framework that can help guide you towards better experiences for your customers:

  • Target people, not devices or opaque audiences. Access to strong identity resolution is a must.
  • Concentrate on consumer behaviors as signals of where the consumer is in their buying process. Demographics can help also but not nearly as much.
  • Utilize analytics to understand how you can best meet the consumer where they are in the buying process.
  • Make the shopping process helpful to the customer not spammy, annoying, or intrusive.
  • Keep your customers and your business safe, avoiding risky or non-compliant interaction.

If you missed our earlier articles about MLP marketing, check them out: Create Customer Experiences that Count! and Work that Matters for Customers Who Care, Laying the Data Foundation to Understand Your Customer.

Cody Boyte is Head of Marketing at Jornaya.