At the Speed of Real-time: How to Create Relevant and Timely Experiences That Convert

The rise of digital, mobile and social technologies has enabled consumers to connect at the speed of real-time. In a world where topics are trending one minute and old news the next, brands must pay close attention to what consumers are thinking, needing, and wanting right now.

40% of consumers buy more from retailers who personalize the shopping experience across channels (Monetate). Providing consumers with tailored content and products that speak to their individual wants and needs is key in standing out in a sea of competition and engaging and converting today’s connected consumers.

Every day marketers are faced with countless opportunities to create hyper relevant messaging and experiences, but don’t know how to strategically collect, analyze and act on all this real-time data. Here are three bases you should cover to ensure you’re reaching the right audiences with the right messages at the right times.

Be Social

Too many businesses are still relying on passe marketing tools and techniques like cookie retargeting and Excel databases that weren’t made to keep up with the speed and breadth of today’s data. Social media has been the catalyst for 1:1, real-time interaction, so marketers looking to reach consumers with the most timely and relevant messages possible must put social at the forefront of their marketing strategies.

Enabling users to login to your site or app using their existing social media accounts gives you permission-based access to a wealth of social data, including users’ relationships, interests, entertainment preferences, and more. Not to mention, while 65% of US consumers delete their cookies (MediaPost), users keep social identities for years and update them on a regular basis. Be sure to leverage a robust database that can store both structured (email addresses) and unstructured (favorite sports teams) data, as well as provide automatic user record updates.

Be Everywhere

Today’s tech savvy marketers often focus their strategies on the latest and greatest gadgets, but if you thought traditional mediums like billboards were dead, the classic BMW-Audi billboard feud should have made you think again. Creating relevant and timely campaigns across both traditional and emerging marketing channels is a modern must – so much so that 53% of Millennials say their favorite brands offer omni-channel experiences (Apparel).

This requires a single unified view of identity, both for the brand and the consumer, but only 18% of marketers routinely have a single view of customers (Teradata). Maintaining a consistent brand voice and message across channels is necessary to create trustworthy, cohesive customer experiences. Having a single view of consumer identity across channels and devices is key in reaching customers with the right messages, on the right platforms at the right times.

Be Actionable

As Facebook’s VP of Infrastructure Engineering Jay Parikh so eloquently put it, “If you aren’t taking advantage of the data you’re collecting, then you just have a pile of data.” Caught up in the recent big data hype, many businesses are now sitting on mountains of useless data – in fact, while 78% of marketers feel the pressure to become more data-driven, only 33% are consistently and strategically leveraging consumer data in their marketing efforts (Teradata).

For data to be actionable, it must be made accessible to the individuals responsible for driving marketing performance. Marketers and IT must work together to put a strategy and platform in place for managing data in an actionable manner so that marketers can leverage these insights to make decisions quickly. This intelligence must also be able to be passed to marketers’ existing platforms and solutions to create data-driven, personalized campaigns across channels.

Reaching consumers with the right messages at the right times is no longer an art – it’s a science. Marketers looking to convert today’s connected consumers must update their strategies and tools to succeed at the speed of real-time.

By Rachel Serpa