We have just said goodbye to a special year in which we had to deal with unexpected events. We were used to our balances but they have been upset and the forecasts made for 2020 have been questioned, also in the field of marketing communications and customer engagement.
More than in the past, it’s time to look at the results, and so we have tried to do so, highlighting the best of what happened at the Marketing Cloud last year.
It was immediately apparent that social distancing called brands to new challenges, and in many cases accelerated digitalisation processes that had been postponed or put on hold.
The importance of customer relationships and the continuity of the relationship over time has gained strength. Brands have been forced to take every opportunity to communicate in the best possible way. Contact methods have been revised, timeframes have been changed and the management of increasingly high expectations has been modified.
Brands have thus realised how crucial it is to have the right tools: technologies and experts who team up and support them to accompany their customers during the purchasing phase and in the loyalty process, offering memorable experiences.
Let’s take a look at what happened in 2020 and try to get ideas to start again together for a breakthrough 2021!
When your brand has been smartworking, Contactlab’s Marketing Cloud has been a valuable ally in providing continuity in customer relationship management.
From the office or at home, day or night, with or without technical knowledge, at all levels of the company, a platform that is always available, up-to-date and within everyone’s reach. Accessible from any device or browser, with any type of connection and at any time of day. The brands have been able to really appreciate and understand how much the business survival can depend on the reliability of the available tools. We have put and continue to put everything at our disposal on the table so that business does not stop despite everything.
What the health emergency teaches to marketing engagement.
The Marketing Cloud has not only facilitated smartworking but has always provided what is needed to ensure a prompt response to new consumer needs and demands. The year 2020 teaches us that brands cannot do without paying attention to time management – timeliness and speed of communications and operations, to the quality of the relationship with the customer – unique and recognised across different channels, to the satisfaction of expectations – personalisation, attention to detail and fulfilment of promises. We must learn together from the past and renew our commitment to the future.
The Marketing Cloud has accompanied marketers in personalising their customer relationships. Through deep consumer knowledge, target profiling, automated customer experiences and omnichannel marketing, you were able to instantly recognise contacts at every opportunity, optimise communication time, maximise dialogue points and make your relationship unique. Your contacts understood that you were taking care of them.
Consumers are coming out of the emergency with an ever higher demand for attention, an immediate response to their searches, minimal time to process requests… they want to be heard immediately and managed consistently across all channels.
When traffic and orders on your ecommerce site increased, you were ready…
…because you chose marketing automation! The pandemic has turned the world of shopping upside down and if at first we were forced to buy online, at a later stage we chose it. Analysts agree that the use of ecommerce will remain widespread post-pandemic. In 2020, the number of online transactions increased significantly, and this was more evident in products than in services. Brands have resorted to all the means necessary to manage a relationship that has moved from the store to the digital world. The Contactlab Marketing Cloud has followed you and supported you in the management of your ecommerce during the various stages of the sales cycle: promotional, purchase, post-purchase or abandonment, during the shipment of goods or customer care… often repetitive and standardised activities. This is precisely why it became vital to automate operations as much as possible, even the simplest ones, during a difficult time when it was necessary to concentrate energies and channel resources. The strong link between ecommerce and marketing automation became apparent.
You gained the attention of your contacts at first sight.
Consumers were heavily pressured by brands, they received many emails and the challenge was to capture their attention in a few moments. Contactlab’s email editors’ journey towards excellence has continued, and in 2020 we’ve offered you some great new features to make your work even easier and more intuitive while increasing the possibility of obtaining attractive emails in just a few clicks. Automatic import of your product data from the catalogue, different templates for desktop and mobile, changes to the email structure with a simple drag & drop, tags in the titles to create hierarchies even in the display of your HTML, real-time preview of your communications… these are just some of the releases we have put in place for you, and not only for the transactional communications that the distancing has imposed on you, but also for HTML to be used in your plans or in your customers’ journeys to fuel your dialogue, boost the conversion of your ecommerce visits into purchases, reduce the risk of abandonment, and increase the loyalty of your customers.
You have ensured that your reputation is always at the highest level for emails straight in the inbox!
Customers couldn’t get into your stores as much as you would have liked and so you found a way to go to them…digitally, revising the way you do email, intensifying contact opportunities and improving the quality of each appointment. But what good would all this have been if emails hadn’t reached the inbox of your contacts? So you have learned that not all malbox service providers behave in the same way; or how to improve the delivery rate to Gmail accounts which represent a large proportion of your recipients; or how, alongside an excellent tool for sending emails, Contactlab also offers experience and expertise to put in place actions that keep your brand reputation high; you have learned the meaning of terms such as DKIM, SPF and DMARC and how to use them to optimise your deliveries.
And you’ve discovered once again how the Marketing Cloud is the right partner for these adventures: from content creation and feedback management to deliverability and brand reputation. So that the final destination of your emails is always your customers’ inbox.
You have counted on marketing automation that goes beyond sending newsletters: personalised, multi-channel, real-time journeys.
In recent years, marketing automation has revolutionised digital communication by reducing the time and distance between brands and consumers. The opportunity to automate was widely seized during the health emergency to keep continuous communication channels open. Automating has meant optimising all the customer relationship activities – think of the entire ecommerce world – reducing the dispersion of energy and improving engagement. Contactlab has focused a great deal on this area, considering it the activation engine of an engagement platform. An intelligent engine where you can orchestrate the customer journey with excellent content tested before use, effective and verified flows for enhanced promotion and refined targets, perhaps based on online purchasing behavior. Imagine how many engagement strategies you can put in place with data at your disposal, processing it to better understand your audience and profiling it to dialogue at the right time and in the right channels, on topics of real interest.
You have experienced a new UI with the latest design system.
When choosing a platform, it often happens that much attention is paid to the features it offers and how it meets one’s needs. Usability, on the other hand, is left in the background. In a year like 2020 when platform usage has increased significantly, your marketeers could see how wrong this is. With the Marketing Cloud they have benefited from a renewed interface that has allowed them on the one hand to navigate between the functions in a more immediate and intuitive way, saving time, and on the other hand to be more effective and efficient in their daily operations with a significant reduction in the resources used. We have worked to give continuity to the process of constant improvement of the UI by reviewing labels, structures and elements and inserting components that guide users into the platform.
You have offered access to unique, enriched, updated and real-time customer profiles for all your business, marketing and other needs.
By using the Marketing Cloud you have realised that while collecting every possible piece of information about your contacts is of paramount importance, having huge amounts of unstructured data collected on separate systems far away from each other makes it unusable and of little value.
After Gartner and the CDP Institute, the platform has received another award that places it among the world’s leading partners for Customer Data Platform projects. Quadrant Solutions highlighted the features of the platform that make it a true CDP: the creation of single customer views, profiling and immediate availability of information. In addition, having an engineered CDP – i.e., one that has been conceived and designed to work seamlessly with Marketing Automation tools – allows brands to immediately activate data for your multichannel campaigns or customised customer journeys.
The hope of a breakthrough 2021.
We have already planned a lot of new things for the new year. We are learning that the world of digital marketing and customer engagement has changed and is constantly evolving. The platform is moving in precisely this direction, taking into account new variables that have emerged in the health emergency: new time management and new expectations on timing, a new way of using content, the strengthening of new purchasing and relationship channels, different needs and requirements. Contactlab renews its commitment to be at your side with a combination of technology and services that can make the difference for your business. Trust us, together we will face a great 2021. Contact us now.