Many organizations have invested in Marketing Automation, CRM systems and a myriad of marketing technology platforms. The value of these investments (improved data and insights) is only realized if the system is configured and used correctly.  So, prior to any marketing technology implementation, Marketers define or diagram their current processes in order to effectively configure their systems.  Here are two potential pitfalls  to avoid during this part of the implementation phase:

  • Basing the configuration on the internal process rather than the customer buying journey.
  • Applying a single view of the customer buying journey.
Marketing Technology Implementation, customer-centric

Keep your customer front and center when you configure your Marketing Technology

There is rarely a one size fits all approach when it comes to the customer buying journey.  Different customer segments, market segments, and buyers may take a different path and prefer different content.  For example, your product or service may typically be purchased by IT managers.  However, in one market, these IT managers may depend heavily on analyst reports as a starting point in their product reviews (their journey).  In another market, IT managers may prefer peer usage as a starting point and will connect with peers early in their journey.  This example illustrates how essential it  is to take a customer-centric approach before you configure any marketing technology system.

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Five Steps to Configure Your Marketing Technology

As you configure your marketing technology, employ these five customer-centric steps:

  1. Start with Segmentation. Segmentation enables the organization to understand what is relevant and preferred by the customer.  Identify the different categories of customers, the buyers and users profiles, and the different personas for each category.
  2. Map the buying journey. Take the time to map the customer buying journey for each segment.  Consider behaviors that occur outside of their interactions with you. Identify the key touch points in their journey and appropriate content for each.  Then validate this map with customers and modify it as needed.  If you don’t know the buying journey, ask.  If you don’t know how to map it, get help. Don’t guess or decide to figure it out later, this step is far too critical for that approach.
  3. Test your map.  This map reflects how you are going to engage with opportunities and with customers. It impacts the customer experience and ultimately your win rate so take the time to test it.
  4. Clarify ownership and handoffs of the touch points.  This is a key part of the opportunity management process and critical to the configuration of your marketing technology.  Once the process is developed and tested the organization must assign ownership for each touch point.  This will help determine at which stage in the journey opportunities move from Marketing to Sales.
  5. Monitor, Measure and Modify.  We live in a dynamic, customer-centric environment.  It’s important to monitor both the process and buying journey to make sure they stay in alignment.  It is also critical to measure how well the process is working in terms of generating new contacts, connections, and conversations; increasing consideration; and ultimately improving consumption of your products and services.  When necessary be willing to revisit the steps and modify as needed. Keep the implications to your marketing technology in mind when you make adjustments.

Segmenting, mapping and testing the buying journey, clarifying ownership, and monitoring your Marketing systems; help ensure that  your organization’s marketing technology systems provide the anticipated improvement in data and insights, and ultimately a high return on investment.

Learn more with this poplar white paper Marketing Technology: The Power Tools for Optimizing Performance and Agility.

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