When your customer comes out of the conversion funnel, what are you left with as a marketer? In the first three parts of this blog post series, we considered the new conversion funnel model; the changed behaviour of the consumer; and some tactics to effectively swing it to your advantage. Today we’re looking at what company executives need to do to succeed in conversion funnel marketing.
Most companies set up different departments to undergo customer-facing activities like public relations and loyalty schemes. Funding in this case is murky, especially when a number of executives handle different elements without coordinating or communicating. If this sounds familiar, you need to remember that such activities should become integrated and be given appropriate leadership.
The necessary changes are a must. A complete understanding of all aspects linked to customer-facing activities is essential for business unit heads as well as for CEOs and chief marketing officers (CMOs). However, the whole scope of the conversion funnel surpasses the traditional role of CMOs, who usually tackle brand building, advertisements, and at times market research. While these responsibilities won’t diminish altogether, CMOs need to embrace a broader role that brings marketing on par with the current consumer decision making process, helps in shaping the public profiles of companies, and uncovers innovative marketing capabilities.
Take for instance the range of skills required to tackle the customer experience in an automotive-insurance company. Some companies have many passive loyalists who can easily be stolen by their competitors. To boost the percentage of active loyalists, marketers don’t only need to integrate customer-facing actions into their marketing organization, but they also require more subtle forms of organizational cooperation.
Both of these require marketers to first identify which of their clients are active loyalists, a step that can easily be handled through customer research, Marketers should also aim at understanding what drives their clients’ loyalty and how they can benefit from it via word-of-mouth programs. In short, companies need an integrated “voice of the customer” that utilizes skills, starting from advertising and all the way to data management. It will be difficult at first, but it’s necessary to solidify these activities. The only person who can naturally capable to handle this task is the CMO.
Marketers have been aware since forever of the changes in the way consumers perform due diligence and purchase products. Unfortunately, their failure to shift the focus of marketing to match this deep change has weakened the core goal of getting in touch with customers at the moments that ensure their purchase decisions.
The change in the way consumers make decisions indicates a need for marketers to adjust their spending and consider changes as an opportunity rather than a loss of funds. This will give marketers the information and support they need to make the best decisions.