Creating an Integrated People-Based Marketing Plan

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Topics: Marketing Strategy

A people-based marketing plan allows you to meet the needs of your customer base and helps you manage a close relationship with them. It’s a fundamental shift from marketing strategy to customer strategy, and is designed to deliver a seamless process between customer strategy and the technology stack in addition to the execution from within an agile environment.

Case Study and Commitment

A regional financial institution learned the value of customer-centric marketing through a process outlined in a people-based plan. Their decisioning platform anchored their efforts in executing a customer strategy that drove messaging. As a result, their incremental revenue increased by 26 percent, and they achieved a 66 percent reduction in campaign cycle time. This occurred over a matter of months, thanks to their commitment and dedication to a people-centric plan.

Integrating Customer Strategy

Our design across planning, strategy, omnichannel delivery, and technology (aligned with your whole organization) improves your marketing results. By analyzing your own customer data, alongside third-party data and customer-provided data, we integrate customer strategy to build a picture of your desired audience and provide a basis for an agile plan for execution.

How the Strategy is Applied

Our goal is to change the decision-making process in your organization, allowing you to respond to your customers and discern what they want rather than what you have wanted previously. Three steps guide our process: building a picture of your preferred audience, understanding your audience relationships (and how you would change them), and creating a flexible plan for change.

Step One: Building a Picture of Your Preferred Audience

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Defining your audience and applying a people-centric strategy does not happen in one single effort. Our process takes place over a series of incremental adaptations that seeks to eliminate friction in marketing. The transformation requires time, budget, and buy-in.

By building a picture of your preferred audience, we can better determine what value they provide. Forbes reported that 49 percent of customers purchased items by personalized recommendation (with only 5 percent returning the product and 85 percent reporting satisfaction and having positive emotions for the store that made the recommendation.)

You need data that is relevant to your business — household profiles, online behaviors, and especially how audiences interact with your competitors. Deliberately seeking data about your customers requires knowing what offerings are important to them. Moreover, data collecting imperatives need to focus on the long-term relationship you have with your audience, which we create through a process of planning and analysis.

Step Two: Understanding Your Audience Relationships (and How You Would Change Them)

Insights gained from data should inform when (and when not to) approach customers — people-based marketing at its smartest — and can help prevent you from attempting to assert marketing on customers at non-optimal times, which may shew them away. This open dialog allows you to create personalized service in ongoing conversations with customers who are engaged when they are ready. The focus is then on long-haul rewards (not quick hit transactions), that can help to determine if the customers you engage with are right for you.

Step Three: Creating a Flexible Plan for Change

Creating a Flexible Plan for Change

Now versus later: When do you make the change? Journey-based messaging on a granular level depends on the nature of your business and changes your marketing needs to undergo. We ask the questions to help your customers lead the charge. How do they want to engage with your brand? How can we help them make individual decisions to gain their trust? Key factors in the success of creating a flexible plan include not going faster than your business can manage and not changing too quickly before customers can adapt. Our goal is to develop agile, integrated, and people-based plans to guide strategy, renewed with each performance analysis of the plan.

Integrating Technology Stack

The key to effectively integrating a people-based marketing plan is these three components: The platform for enterprise-level integration (and looking at the data available), facilities for real-time receipt and distribution of customer profiles, and a singular stage for marketing in omnichannel delivery and across media. Simply moving data through manual and partially automated processes does not integrate a stack — it only provides the illusion of integration.

Identity and Linchpins

Beginning to integrate a people-based marketing plan must include gathering unique identifiers for individual users, such as phone numbers, names, cookies or emails. We bring these identifiers together to allow you to track specific users, identify the right people to engage with, and determine the success of the engagement. However, determining identity does not stop at how customers engage with your brand.

Without second and third-party players, you will not understand the impact of customer decisions. We identify how customers proceed in their journeys outside of your business, which will inform the engagements that will unify the customer journey to create relevance and measure efficacy and efficiency in the marketing plan.

Powering Agility and Innovation

Principally, integrated data platforms enable marketing agility and innovation. They’re not merely a single symbolic object that stores and manages data. We design for optimal environments that can rapidly be torn down and built up in people-based marketing initiatives. The new principles of an integrated data platform power business and allow for tech teams to move adeptly in serving the specific use cases and create myriad smaller and meaningful data objects.

The integrated platforms we develop have sets of tools and processes that allow our data scientists and marketing specialists to harvest the most piercing insights, and create the opportunity to rapidly visualize and understand data assets.

Creating Intelligent Engagements with a Single Data Engine

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Conflicting data across channels can disrupt the unified approach that is essential to people-based marketing plans. A single engine is necessary to quell such an unwanted ecosystem. The single data engine executes a common strategy that arbitrates outbound communications and pinpoints the next best action, promoting relevance and continuity of messaging to your consumers.

Our data hubs become the unit for retaining the memory of consumer engagement, which serves to optimize personalization and relevancy. Each piece is organized within your ecosystem to enable a workable technology stack in harmony with all of the components of a campaign, which drives the highly relevant, meaningful engagements desired in a people-based marketing plan.

Bridging the Silo Mentality

The science and art of data develops from humans working together with machines to unlock the power of people-based marketing strategy. However, a breakdown between human cooperatives are hazardous to the health of a people-centric marketing plan and execution. Competing organizational goals in departments, the insipid silos, break down the execution of a people-based marketing plan. But silos aren’t meant to be broken. Rather, they’re meant to be bridged. This requires sponsorship from an executive — not simply an executive who grants permission.

An objective third-party can also intervene to assess the effectiveness of organizational operations. This outside party can determine the degree to which your operations remain customer focused and static at an enterprise level — orchestrated through omnichannel delivery, products, and occuring in real-time decisioning: A great measure to ensure that execution remains effective and the integrity of the strategy is maintained.

Consequences of Not Planning

Organizations can adapt with agility guided by central principles to create uniform messages delivered with insight to customers at the right time and personalized with precision. Without such a plan, a 25 percent reduction in potential revenue, excesses of 85+ full-time employee hours expended, and 10.2+ added days in delivering to market can occur.

At Axis41, A Merkle Company, we partner with clients to integrate enterprise-level planning, strategy, and execution that drives conversion and focuses on the most crucial pieces of your business — the people in your organization and the customers you serve.

Contact us today for a consultation and to begin developing a people-based marketing plan.