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Customer Contact or Not Quite Customer Contact

February 10, 2014

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOne of our assets is the ability to talk one on one with our customers. We can’t quite match the volume production price points of the Tysons and Del Montes of the world. But we can be available to talk to you. To tell you what we’re doing  and, if you have questions, why we’re doing it.

So I get an email today with a webinar offer. That’s not unusual but for some reason today perspective struck.

2014 is the year of the customer—today’s buyer expects true one-to-one conversations that are relevant to their needs and interests. Fortunately, marketing automation technology enables marketers to do just this, especially after a buyer makes an initial purchase. While more marketing teams than ever are using marketing automation, many are still not taking full advantage of the technology’s capabilities.

To learn more about how to use marketing automation to increase customer engagement, ensure future repeat purchases and build brand loyalty, join us March 4 with SiriusDecision’s Vice President and Group Director Megan Heuer. The Webinar will specifically highlight key stages in the customer marketing lifecycle and provide action plans for how marketing automation can bring these ideas to reality. The stages include:

  • Deliver/Initiate

  • Develop/Participate

  • Retain/Actualize

  • Grow/Advocate

So….here’s a large marketing company trying to automate what we’re doing. I’m not sure whether to be insulted or flattered, but I don’t need to take the webinar. It tells me that the next wave of marketing is to convince you, the customer, that they are just like us…or their automation is.

And there will be people who buy that. Like the individualized plug-the-name-in form letters that come in the junk mail, it appears that they’re talking directly to you. Do you believe that?

More than that – should we be concerned? I’m not. Call it foolish but I think people want genuine contact. It’s not just “come buy from us” (so we can hook you in) – it’s come join our customers, and don’t be shy about coming to the gathering when we set it, or asking questions. Let’s have a meal or let me tell you about this heritage pepper we’re growing this year.

If customers are looking for “true one-to-one communication” is that by automation, or by joining us for a bonfire with a beautiful sunset on a summer day?

We’re not big, flashy with fancy cars and million dollar buildings. Does it matter to you? Some it does. They want efficient, streamlined, bottom dollar items. We all want a good deal, don’t we? We all like to feel special.

Personally I’ve never heard someone bite into a meal and say “oh this tastes so efficient!” It takes all to feed all food choices…but we don’t have to fake personal. I hope we never do!

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