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Experian: “Customer obsession” is necessary for direct marketing success

In order to succeed at direct marketing, marketers have to be “customer obsessed,” said group president of Experian Marketing Services Matt Seeley during his introductory speech at the 2012 Experian Marketing Services’s Digital Summit at the Venetian Resort Hotel Casino in Las Vegas. If marketers aren’t trying to trace their customers’ moves from initial contact to point of purchase, they won’t be able to target and market to customers effectively, he says.

Seeley, spoke of a hypothetical customer named “Dana,” an everyman/everywoman type of customer who demands a lot from direct marketing services. “Dana demands that we provide a coordinated experience,” he says, from the moment she finds out about an offer, to the moment she purchases, through display ads, email and offers. “We need to move her [Dana] from a customer, to a brand advocate,” he says.

“We want to make sure that you get a real smile every time you reach out to a prospect or a customer in their life,” says Experian North America CEO Victor Nichols.

In a later speech, Nichols said that for a long time, marketers were like a dog chasing a car. Now, he says, they’ve caught the bumper, without knowing exactly what to do with it.

The “bumper,” he says, is being able to target customers directly and digitally. Now, it’s up to marketers to break down silos and track customers in effective ways.

Amy Choyne, SVP and CMO at Kenneth Cole, said that customers have shifted from segmenting themselves – from, say, having several different emails for different purposes – to now demanding that marketers do the same.”

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