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How to Reach the Digital Consumer Through Real-Time Intelligence

November 13, 2012 By Beatriz Santin
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The digital consumer is turning conventional marketing wisdom on its head. This fundamental shift in the way that consumers connect with brands means that retailers must evaluate how to create meaningful connections. It used to be that relationships were forged by friendly face-to-face conversations in brick-and-mortar stores. Now, those consumer connections are happening across various channels — telephone conversations, e-commerce websites, mobile devices, blogs, social media sites, in-store.

Furthermore, retailers have to worry about an immense amount of competition; consumers are constantly plagued by information. To be relevant, there's a need to target individuals with specific messages that break through the noise and entice them to pay attention and ultimately take action.

What's the trick in creating meaningful interactions? It's relating to the individual consumer with real-time decisions and dynamic offers.

Many retailers currently engage in consumer profiling to gain insight. By combining buying patterns with purchase history along with third-party demographic and behavioral intelligence, analysts can build models and evaluate data to segment consumers for future marketing campaigns. Businesses that do so become smarter on how best to interact with consumers.

We're starting to see more and more uptake in real-time decisioning. While back-office consumer profiling is and will continue to be very important to retailers, to break through the clutter you need to use real-time strategies. Adding the real-time component allows you to reach consumers first. This is especially important as retailers try to keep up with the current digital consumer, whose impressions solidify quickly and buying decisions happen in a very short period of time.

Retailers should gain intelligence at the point of contact to create a real-time messaging strategy that will allow them to capitalize on consumer interest quickly and effectively. There are four steps organizations need to take in order to implement real-time consumer intelligence:

1. Clean internal data. The key to real-time consumer intelligence is being able to marry lots of different information quickly to provide relevant offers. Accurate data allows retailers to more easily search information, combine duplicate records and analyze data.

2. Clean incoming information. Ensuring the accuracy of inbound information provides two business benefits: First, verifying contact data at the point of entry improves the accuracy of inbound information so retailers can get more from marketing efforts. Second, it ensures that a retailer can get more accurate matches from third-party data providers, who frequently use contact information to identify intelligence.



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