Digital Channels' Role in Effective Customer Relationship Management

Digital Channels' Role in Effective Customer Relationship Management

Ashwini Nithyanandam, Head - Marketing, Prestige Group, 0

Highly passionate and performance driven, Ashwini is the youngest manager to head marketing for the retail wing of Prestige Group across India and holds over 14 years of leading and developing successful and award winning marketing programs through high performance teams in the retail industry.

Marketers constantly seek data to gain insights into consumers and their decision journey. Digital mediums have disrupted traditional influences, and the growth of online data has paved the way for various marketing analytical techniques. The consumer brand relationship over digital mediums has become significant in deriving insights for improved ROI and precision targeting. Each digital channel has a role or relationship with the consumer. Brands use Search to be relevant to the consumer needs, Display to intercept consumers, Social connects brands to consumers in key moments, and Video engages with the consumers. It is imperative that we use key metrics to measure the effectiveness of each channel.

1.Search Engine Management(SEM): Paid search techniques provided by multiple platforms such as Google on which brands invest to reach the consumers.

2.Search Engine Optimization(SEO): Non-Paid, search results based on the relevance and popularity of the content in you pages.

An example of a user experience journey for a television set search might throw multiple results. The results which are tagged ‘sponsored’ are the ones which are paid for by the brands and appear on top of the search results. Effective metrics to measure the success of display ads include:

1.Click Through Rate: Total Clicks/Total Impressions (number of times an ad was served)
2.Macro Conversion Rate: CTA or steps which will achieve the primary objectives of the site/page. Examples of objectives for an enterprise could be revenue, contact us, request a quote, and free-trial.
3.Cost Per Acquisition: Cost/number of Acquisitions

Video metrics include:
1.Video views: Full length or partial views of the posted video
2.Play through rate: The number of viewers who watch the video to completion, expressed as a percentage.
3.Engagement Rate: The number of viewers who participate with the video

For Social, it is important to track the following:

1.Audience Growth: Followers/Likes
2.Amplification Rate: Rate at which your followers take your content and share it through their network
3.Applause Rate: Rate at which your followers attach special recognition to your post
4.Micro Conversion Rate: Number of predefined goals achieved/# of visitor sessions

Key success measurements for Social handles include:
1.Conversion Rate: Number of audience comments (or replies) per post
2.Amplification Rate: Number of retweets per post (Twitter), number of shares per post(FB), and number of clicks per post(YouTube/Blog)
3.Applause Rate: Number of favourite clicks per post # of Likes per post

An imposing question to answer is, which digital medium is most effective to use? In my opinion the role of the digital channel purely depends on the type of the organization and its primary objective. For example an e-Commerce site will focus on increasing transactions and an effective search result with the help of SEM and SEO. A news channel might employ search and display to a large extent. For a mall or a retailer who represents a physical market place, social channels and video will be engaging.

The role of the digital channel purely depends on the type of the organization and its primary objective

A few examples of effective social messaging used by retailers is Timberland, the outdoor clothing, hiking boots and active sport products company that features its products in majority of its posts. These posts make images visually appealing, products get featured, and they ask questions to the consumers and prompt a response to create more engagement. Dunkin donuts runs contests, where one lucky fan is chosen as the ‘Fan of the Week’, an honour which includes having their picture featured on the Dunkin Donuts’ Facebook page.

In summary, the effectiveness of the medium can be measured with the business objectives of the organization and the bandwidth of the medium. In today’s context all the mediums play an active role in the consumer decision journey and the effectiveness of each will vary with respect to the industry and their business objectives.