SOI Direct Mail: Multichannel Management:
There are five key elements to CCM, and they all work together as a system to create positive customer interactions. The elements include:
• Conducting a solid analysis of your current customer database to recognize distinct segments and their buying patterns
• Preparing customized communications to each customer or segment based on this analysis
• Distributing these messages through physical, digital or both channels
• Managing the inbound responses to your communications
• Analyzing customer responses, which you then feed back into your overall customer database to enhance your next round of communications.
It may sound complicated, but it is a set of activities that most companies already are engaged in today to varying degrees. Few, however, are seizing the opportunity to make CCM a strategic advantage over their competitors.
Step Two: Identify your strengths and weaknesses in CCM, and make a plan to improve. Some companies have excellent customer data, but don't know how to leverage it for insights. Others are very good at managing inbound responses, but lack the ability to create customized outbound messages. Still, others have a multitude of communications channels, but have not yet tied them together strategically so they appear as "one company" to the consumer.
Data is often the "root of all evil" for companies. The quantity of data isn't the problem. It is that most of the data is unclean, has been duplicated and needs to be enriched to make it more valuable. The term data also now includes geospatial data, which can provide fresh insights into customer behavior based on location, demographics and other specialized industry information that makes it more valuable.
It's important to understand how sophisticated an overall CCM system is, and where it may need to be improved. One source of insight is your customers, who will be more than happy to tell you the ways in which they feel your communications can improve. Take the time to ask them how they want to interact with you. Likely, many of them will prefer less expensive and less cumbersome channels. That is an opportunity to save money and create more engaging relationships with your customers.