We all know that customer expectations continue to rise and competition is tougher than ever; the question is how brands can stay relevant to their customers in that environment, Matt Seeley said during the opening keynote at Storytellers, Experian Marketing Services’ 2014 Client Summit. Seeley, group president, North America, for Experian Marketing Services, recommends that marketers get back to basics to keep moving forward. He advised attendees to focus on four areas:
Courage: It takes courage to change. Real change starts with company leaders. They need to get out and interact with customers and get a firsthand view of the customer experience.
Whether you’re a lead the marketing team or are part of it, you need to be the person who’s part of that change, who’s willing to collaborate and do what’s right for the business and the customer, not just your own silo.
Simplicity: You need to simplify. It’s harder than ever to differentiate your brand; one way to do so is to simplify your message. Another way is to simplify the structure of the marketing team. A third is to adopt agile marketing—it’s an effective way to evolve quickly, but do so always thinking about the customer. Finally, focus on what matters most. Begin with what you’re not going to do so you can prioritize what you should and will do.
Authenticity: Start with what’s authentic about your brand. People know when you’re disingenuous. Be real.
Customer: Everything should start with the customer at the center, from overall marketing structure to individual campaigns. Also, use data. It tells a story about your customers. It will guide you to the right decisions.
Why rethink your approach to marketing? “I guarantee there’s someone in a garage right now trying to take away your customers,” Seeley said.