Where Were You The Day The Marketing Revolution Began?

reduced_size_longbow_3I was in a car driving to Boston for an analyst briefing on October 1, 2013, the day the marketing revolution began. Where were you?

I was excited because we’d been preparing for this day for over two years. The status quo was about to go.  There have been too many years of ineffective marketing, of plunging response rates, of overflowing junk mailboxes. Marketing budgets have been over weighted to acquisition, often ignoring existing customers to the point of neglect, even when those existing customers contribute the bulk of a company’s revenue. So-called customer-centric marketing has been an elusive goal. The ‘direct’ in ‘direct marketing’ has meant direct to the trash.

What needs to be done

Most marketers are so caught up in pushing products and acquiring new customers that they’ve forgotten how to serve their biggest asset, their existing customers. If the customer is to be the center of your marketing, then purchasing behavior should be analyzed at the individual customer level, not by a category of product or by a segment of customers. You don’t learn to play baseball by watching football. Neither can anyone accurately predict what an individual customer will buy by using logistic regression on a group of products or a group of customers.

Marketers on the whole have not yet recognized that every customer has their own risk of defection. It’s quantifiable and measurable. It’s the best single measure of customer loyalty. Changes in that risk are the best metric to use for triggered campaigns to improve retention, but most companies don’t know how to do this.

Companies want to market at scale — to tens of thousands or millions of customers — and if they want the high response rates that come with relevant, individualized offers and messaging, that means automated systems. So far, that’s not been possible.

What changed on October 1st

Loyalty Builders released Longbow 2.0TM. It’s the first cloud-based SaaS system for individualized marketing. The first system that helps you send a million different emails to a million different customers, with each one getting the offers most relevant to their wishes and needs.

While you could do individualized marketing before, you needed statisticians and programmers. With Longbow 2.0, you don’t. It does the math. You do the marketing.

You can see this revolution happening in direct marketing departments, of course.  But you will also find it in call centers, where operators now know what to offer their customers. You can see it on websites, where screens change according to analytics at the individual customer level. And you’ll see it on your phone, where mobile messages will be tailored for you alone.

After the revolution

The marketing world won’t be the same. Customers will reject spray-and-pray marketing as spam. They want to be treated as individuals, and they won’t trust companies that can’t do that. Individualized marketing will be the ante. Marketers can be more customer-focused. I was excited on October 1st, and still am, because it’s now possible for so many more companies to do what’s best for them and best for their customers.

If you can’t meet this new standard, step aside or be trampled by companies that can. Join up. Get on board the individualized marketing revolution. The times are changing!

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