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4 Ways to Improve Your Customer Communications

Submitted by Alexandra Truchot, Content Creation Specialist for Objectif Lune.
April 25, 2016

You’re probably bombarded with articles showing the need to improve your customer communications.

Now that you’re well aware of the impact the customer experience can have on your business, how exactly do you go about it? What are the main things to keep in mind and to implement?

Multichannel, rather than digital, communications
We repeatedly stress the importance of moving into the digital age. But consumer expectations are more complex than simply wanting to communicate with you by email because they are all different in terms of their speed in adapting to the digital world: traditional channels only, a little bit of digital or digital in every aspect of their lives.

All of these consumers co-exist, and it’s not as easy as it used to be to separate them simply based on age. Seniors are now as digital savvy as young people, who are still gravitating between traditional and digital. You have to be able to reach all of them. If not, a competitor will beat you to it.

Mobility and consistency
Not only are consumers connected 24/7, but they travel around a lot. And they want access to the same quality of information, no matter where they’re located.

Most companies have already started to offer their content through mobile and email, but it’s not easy to read, extends beyond the device’s screen and doesn’t offer the same features. Simply put, because companies are still not managing to change content based on the strengths of each platform, they settle for using the same elements, regardless of where the content is posted. But customers have less and less patience with sites and email unsuited to mobile. They want a total, consistent experience.

Being responsive and fast
Mobility leads to a real-time need. Customers are now used to getting news at any time, and as soon as it happens. They expect things to work the same way in their business relationships. They want information to be available 24/7 and on demand.

More than anything else, consumers assess your response time. Organizations that can respond in real time are now getting ahead of the curve.

Your customers want their next invoice to reflect the latest call they had with you, even if it was only a couple of days ago. If they request a change in their account or billing, you can no longer afford to wait several weeks before accounting for it in the communications sent over any of the channels.

Loyalty: an ongoing pursuit
Loyalty means little anymore. Just because customers buy your products, it doesn’t mean they’ll stick with you forever. Nowadays, they need to be wooed on a continual basis because they’re always assessing you. The digital age has made it possible for them to move around: in just a few clicks, they can find out what your competitors are doing. They can make quick online comparisons.

If the competitor seems to be offering a more personalized customer experience, chances are your customers will go to that competitor, even if your products are top of the line.


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Alexandra Truchot – Content creation specialist with Objectif Lune. Writer and compulsive reader. Eager for unknown destinations and exciting encounters. Anything is possible, you just have to believe it. Connect with her on LinkedIn.

Objectif Lune has 20 years of experience developing Customer Communications Management solutions. Our solutions bridge the gap between systems and automate more personalized, relevant, multichannel customer communications. Learn more at: www.objectiflune.com.

 

Is Multi-Channel Marketing Just Another Spray and Pray?

Last week when I was in Haiti I had an interesting conversation with one of the people in our group about the whole subject of marketing and in particular the best way he could solicit funds for his not-for-profit organization.
He shared that he had researched the concept of multi-channel marketing and was keen on the idea of trying to communicate with people using different channels to increase the odds of his success. His logic followed conventional wisdom that if he puts his message out utilizing different channels that one of them would stick, prompt some type of response and increase donations.

As we talked more I began to wonder if multi-channel marketing was becoming the new spray and pray.

Spray and Pray

In the old days of direct mail the terms “spray and pray” meant you sent “x” number of people a direct mail piece and a percentage would respond. Acceptable response rates were 2-3% and as technology and demographic targeting became more prevalent exponential increases in percentages of responses were realized.

More relevant and targeted marketing, generating fewer mailed pieces, with a higher response and better ROI have replaced the spray and pray method.

Is Multi-Channel Marketing the New “Spray and Pray”?

I have children so I understand they will respond to a text faster than a phone call. Call your child, wait for it to go into voice mail (if they have one) and then text them to get an instant answer. Text messaging as a channel works. For others it is Twitter, LinkedIn, some Facebook (although kids are leaving it since their parents discovered it!) and there are still many who value their walk to the mailbox.

One would think then it would be all about the channel.

What Could Multi-Channel Marketing Be?

I attend a lot of conferences, participate in a lot of Webinars, and I have seen some great multi-channel campaigns that were works of art. They not only relied on the delivery channel but the message associated with each type of media. They capitalized on the attributes of each channel as well as the various senses they triggered. They were an “ongoing message” designed to engage, engrain a message and drive different calls to actions. Different messages using different channels.

Maybe it’s not just the channel, but a combination of the channel and messaging

Confusing? Yes? No? Not sure?

I guess everyone’s definition of multi-channel marketing is a bit different. Some simply take the same information and send it out using different channels and others make it an engaging experience.  If it works, who is to say it is wrong.

Back to Haiti! As we continued to talk he realized that the delivery channel was important but so was the product, story line, design and demographics of the recipients. (He is not a marketing guy just someone who want to raise money to help people.) Since we had a whole evening with no TV, little light and no internet, we decided to plot out a campaign that included video, pictures, social media presence, etc. etc. It will be interesting to check back with him.

It all boils down to the right message, to the right person at the right time using the right channel(s).

Come and Hear for Yourself …. Are We There Yet?

I invite you to attend the complimentary Xplor at Print13 breakfast session entitled “Are We There Yet? A 2013 Multi-Channel Communications Industry Perspective” moderated by Matt Swain of InfoTrends.

The panel will feature end users who have provide multi-channel communications to their customers. They have been there and will share their successes and failures.

For more information or to register please visit: http://xplor.org/upcoming-events/xplor-at-print-13

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Are We There Yet? We will see at #Print13

One of the buzzwords or phrases that has made the rounds the last several years is “multi-channel marketing”.  I have watched dozens of  presentations on the subject, spoken about it and have debated it’s attributes.

What is Multi-Channel Marketing?

According to our friends at Wikipedia – Multichannel marketing is marketing using many different marketing channels to reach a customer.[1] In this sense, a channel might be a retail store, a web site, a mail order catalogue, or direct personal communications by letter, email or text message. The objective of the companies doing the marketing is to make it easy for a consumer to buy from them in whatever way is most appropriate.

Does Multi-Channel Marketing Equate To Effective Marketing?

My favorite definition of relevant communications is “the right message, to the right person at the right time …. using the right media.  Is multi-channel communications the same thing as effective marketing? Sometimes, maybe but not always. 

When I was looking at what type of programming Xplor was going to do at Print13 I decided it was time to address the issue. I wanted to have a forum where several companies who had implemented multi-channel communications speak openly about their successes and failures. I wanted someone to ask the tough questions, who knows the industry.

Are We There Yet: A 2013 Multi-Channel Communications Industry Perspective 

InfoTrends_A_Questex_Company_LogoPrint 13 is the perfect backdrop for Xplor’s breakfast keynote session moderated by industry expert Matt Swain of InfoTrends. Matt’s panel of leading print service providers will talk about their challenges, the things they would do different and the things that worked.

It is a don’t miss 90 minutes at Print13.

The breakfast panel is taking place September 10th from 8:30 am to 10:00 am. The cost, complimentary thanks to our sponsors CompartCrawford Technologies and Solimar Systems.

Join us for breakfast, a great educational session and also receive a complimentary exhibit hall pass simply by registering to attend.

The session is going to be conveniently located at McCormick Place South in Room 101 a few short steps from the shuttle bus drop off area.

Register here ASAP as attendance is limited to 200. 

See you in Chicago …. Are We There Yet?

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