Christmas 2020 will be one to remember, but perhaps not for the right reasons. It’s been a tumultuous year, with many retailers feeling the brunt of Brexit, COVID-19, and the popularity of e-commerce behemoths like Amazon and eBay. But the good news is, 2021 is a clean slate. A new year, and a chance for retailers to turn the tide on 2020.
For today’s marketer, who is likely to be working from home, this past year has seen an incredible shift. McKinsey described Q1 2020 as 10 years’ worth of change in just three months. Already witnessing the diminishment of the high street, the pandemic expedited things with the closure of non-essential retail outlets for months, and required restrictions such as reduced capacity and mask-wearing, the rest of the time. But you know all this.
As we’re set to move into 2021, let’s take a look at what a Christmas wish list for today’s marketers might look like:
The gift of personalisation
When we say personalisation, this doesn’t mean a bar of chocolate with your name printed on it, or a pair of trainers with your initials embroidered onto the heel (although, if you’re looking for Christmas gift inspiration, you’re welcome!). What we’re talking about is using data analytics and machine learning to enable retailers and brands to match customers with the items they’re looking for, when they want them.
True personalisation distils customer data (think preferences, purchases, returns, etc.) into bespoke, item-specific recommendations for individual shoppers. Extreme examples could be suggesting a larger top size for a product whose reviews note that it runs small, or selecting the ripeness of bananas in a grocery shop depending on how often they’re ordered or the purpose of their use — banana bread, anyone?
It’s noisy out there – or should we say ‘on there’ – with more people shopping online than ever before, so for retailers to really motivate their audience into making a purchase, every interaction must be personalised.
The gift of time
Already time-poor and stretched, marketing teams have sought to evolve as a result of the pandemic. For one, teams across the country have had to quickly embrace the WFH (work-from-home) lifestyle, whilst ensuring they still deliver engaging campaigns that captivate their audiences. And on top of this, during their disrupted working lives, marketing performance has been scrutinised as businesses tighten their belts.
What marketing – and sales – teams need, is a single source of truth from which they can access all the content they need to do their jobs. From this ‘hub’, marketers can store files, simplify review and approval processes for content, and track timelines and progress.
Buying back time, or rather giving the gift of time, is invaluable to a marketer. It’s nobody’s job to search and find content – it’s simply what needs to be done to accomplish another task. So, if the search, management, and storage of content is taken care of, marketing teams can gain back time to be more creative and achieve those value-add tasks.
The gift of value
Proving ROI is a large part of the modern marketer’s role. Why spend money on this campaign? What content is being used? How is it being used?
Giving teams insight into what assets have been downloaded, or what style of photography is more popular, enables marketing teams to make strategic decisions about their content creation and usage. It also helps them meet their project goals and prove ROI.
Being able to repurpose content – using one image and editing it for multiple campaigns or other projects – is a second form of value that supports a marketer in justifying their ROI. And via the single source of truth or content hub, teams can collaborate, coordinate, and control their brand across its entire content lifecycle — from creation to archival.
Santa’s special delivery for marketers
There’s a common solution for delivering personalisation, time-back, and value to marketers this Christmas, though. Technology has come a long way over the last few years, delighting marketing and sales teams alike with its ability to digitally transform operations, work more efficiently, and enable brands to deliver consistent, relevant marketing campaigns.
One such solution is digital asset management (DAM). A software platform that provides brands and retailers with that ‘single source of truth’, from which their marketing and sales teams can access on-brand content.
Christmas might be just around the corner, but the good news is, a DAM solution is for all-year long – not just for the festive season!
Credit: Jake Athey, VP of Marketing and Customer Experience, Widen.