Marketers overwhelmingly agree that gaining a single view of the customer is vital to improving return on marketing spend and providing the seamless experiences that today’s always-on customers expect. But only 6% have attained that panoramic customer view, according to new data.
The study from real time marketing firm Signal, indicates that an overwhelming majority of brands do not have a single view of their customers, despite 90% of marketers reporting it as important or essential to achieving key marketing goals.
For example, 62% of respondents stated that fragmented data leads to incomplete marketing measurement and hinders the ability to personalize customer experiences. 35% also state that they cannot understand the customer journey with incomplete data, and one quarter say it causes inefficient and wasteful media buying.
“Cross-channel identity is make-or-break for marketing success in today’s connected world,” said Neil Joyce, Managing Director, EMEA. “Consumers are always on via the web, mobile, in stores, and more. Yet, this report shows that marketers globally are challenged to create the seamless experience buyers now expect and demand from brands. We found similar results when we drilled down into feedback from European markets.”
Additional key findings include:
• The promise of a real-time, single customer view is great, but it’s difficult to achieve.
• The study found 57% of marketers are unable to merge profile fragments as data becomes available, and 55% lack the ability to collect and connect data across channels.
• Current tools used by marketers aren’t helping solve these problems, as 70% say their solutions have gaps in data capabilities or effectiveness. Only 8% of respondents say their tools are doing a good job in helping them develop a unified customer view.
• Marketers struggle to gather and integrate data from many of the most common consumer touch points. Only 37% of marketers can collect and integrate mobile app data, and only half can do so from CRM systems. Less than half – 42% – can collect and connect ad impression data, and only 23% are able to gather and merge Point of Sale (POS) data.
“We wanted to understand the importance of a unified customer view and the issues faced by marketers in achieving it,” said Joyce. “Results confirmed that marketers need data first and foremost to understand cross-channel identity. However, they currently struggle to cover all channels and close the gaps in their solutions.”
He added: “It is clear that marketers recognize the business benefits of a single customer view. Understanding customer behaviour across channels and improving marketing ROI are the top two reported benefits. The good news is that better solutions to create a unified customer view do exist. At Signal, we created our Fuse platform to provide marketers with a comprehensive, always-on solution for building unified customer profiles that they can use however they want, wherever they choose.”
The report is based on a survey of nearly 200 marketers globally. To view the full report, visit here. Data from the EMEA-based marketers surveyed is available upon request.