Tag Archives: data

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How lazy retail marketers are disrespecting the consumer

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Without doubt email is still one of the most effective methods to directly connect with prospects and customers. Emerging from the pre-digital ‘direct marketing’ discipline, the humble email has evolved from basically a promotional and loyalty tactic to being a cornerstone of the ‘engagement marketing’ suite.

However it raises a serious question: has email created the ‘lazy marketer’ who simply builds an email database to ‘blast’ their messages to an unsuspecting consumer?

Given the refinement of data that can be collected from each interaction (online and offline), it is more than assumption that marketers are likely to have a useful understanding of purchase behaviour (what, where, when, price, etc.). For the most part consumers in Australia are still bombarded with a never-ending series of unrelated messages from brands ‘spraying’ a message in the hope that someone will respond.

This is lazy marketing, pure and simple.

Take this recent experience as a Country Road customer. After purchasing from their Trenery-branded store, a customer signed up to their loyalty program on the promise of priority offers and various other benefits. Wow – the reality is totally different!

The number of emails received from both Trenery and Country Road over a one month period was a staggering 33! Almost daily they sent an email offering specials on products this customer will never buy because they don’t match her taste. Country Road is the laziest fashion brand landing in this Inbox.

The purpose of engagement marketing for Country Road is to tailor its emails to the attributes they know about their customer, ask for more information (usually in exchange for something), and only send relevant information and offers based on this known data. When a brand knows a customer’s buying habits and preferences, it has a powerful segmentation tool for them to “best guess” their next purchase and then use that data in the next communication.

Digital-based engagement marketing requires genuine leadership and planning. Gone are the days where an email address alone is the basis for a brand to indiscriminately send marketing messages, and worst of all, sell their customer data to other businesses who will do the same.

At marketingbytes we provide clients with a 100% customer-centric approach to engagement marketing. It has delivered significant benefits for brands wanting to construct a meaningful dialogue with their customers, earn a positive ROI plus achieve real demand management through highly effective data management.

Contact us to discuss how we can apply our approach to CRM to acquire customers for your business.

Further reading:

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Three criteria of a modern marketer

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THERE’S a saying* that perfectly describes the elements needed to lead and influence others: you must
have an eye on the future, a finger on the pulse and a seat at the table“.

Interpreting these three criteria for the modern marketer; “an eye on the future” indicates a focus on innovation, “finger on the pulse” requires an understanding of data, and “a seat at the table” demands a good storyteller.

Let’s examine these criteria from a marketer’s perspective.


Marketing has been fuelled by innovation since the Mad Men days. In marketing-land this has been essentially two sides of the same coin: on one side there is product innovation, the other communications innovation (in terms of message and/or medium).

More often than not, product innovation is not matched with communications innovation, and vice versa. However that’s ok, as it can be argued that innovating in one aspect of a brand’s marketing does not necessarily demand innovation in any or every other attribute.

What is certain in today’s digitally-influenced marketing landscape is that innovation is rife across all media channels and within product development areas. In some cases it’s evident in both the product AND communications, such as mobile apps for a product/service that becomes a utility in the hands of loyal customers, accessed on demand or in response to a Notification activated by NFC or an iBeacon.

This has led to a blurring of the lines between advertising, PR, experiential, sales promotion, direct, loyalty and sponsorship. Digital communications platforms provide a marketer with a vast array of tactics to execute a campaign, speak to an audience, brand an event, demonstrate a product…by directly paying for media space or more prevalent is the use of ‘owned’ and ‘earned’ media.

Adapting a well known phrase (necessity is the mother of invention), in the world of marketing I would say that complexity is the mother of innovation.


The upshot of digital communications is that the systems being used to broadcast messages (such as email) and the systems consumers contact as a result (such as a website) create a data trail that provides invaluable insights. There’s literally data ‘pulsing’ through the digital veins of an organisation.

Capturing, analysing and extracting insights from ever-growing volumes of data has become a serious challenge for the modern marketer. Ironically it will probably be technology that will be the saviour.

Web content management systems that use personas to identify users. CRM systems that intelligently track behaviour and actions. More powerful analytics engines processing larger and larger amounts of raw data.

All of these technological solutions will aid marketers in their quest to keep their ‘finger on the pulse’. However they will only be valuable if there are people with superior data analysis skills to interpret trends and identify relevant insights – these will be the most sought-after skills in the years ahead.

Further to technology and people, customer journey mapping and user experience design thinking will help a company to ensure the right data is captured at the right time for the right reason.


“A seat at the table” implores presence at critical decision-making moments. It may be in the boardroom or executive management meetings. These are the times when the modern marketer must have a strong role as a contributor and influencer.

The imperative to influence, to contribute to the debate, is best achieved by being an accomplished storyteller.

Stories that describe how the customer landscape is evolving and what must be done to adjust course accordingly. To describe how data analysis is being used to influence R&D resources. And to explain how the new product’s positioning creates an emotional connection with a particular customer segment.

Whilst storytelling is becoming a key strategic weapon in consumer marketing, it should also be a skill employed by the modern marketer to communicate with peers and subordinates alike. The beauty of a story-telling approach is that it adds empathy and fraternity to almost any topic.


What else is required to be a thoroughly modern marketer? Are there other sayings to describe the skills required to be an effective marketer in this digitally-driven world? Let me know your thoughts in the Comments box below.

The last word is by Tom Fishburne, the Marketoonist who brilliantly takes the micky out of marketers and marketing:


* Even after a Google search I can’t identify who this phrase is attributed to.