Fully integrating channels in a customer marketing program or campaign is not easy.

In fact, the recent Econsultancy/ CACI Integrated Customer Experience report showed that despite 90% of companies wanting to integrate across channel, only 20% actually have a well-developed strategy.

Even when there is a strategy, implementing it is a process laden with obstacles. The most common problem for businesses is the complexity of a customer’s interaction across multiple channels, departments and systems.

Related to this issue is the fact that multiple departments need to be aligned on planning and change activities required. This cross-departmental responsibility creates resource allocation and control issues.

Start small, deliver results

In their recent JUMP presentation, my colleagues Matt Hey and Stephen Derbyshire offered practical direction to digital marketers who are struggling with these issues. Heavily summarised their counsel is to start small and think big.

This is achieved by having a vision for a completely integrated customer experience (think big) that is offset against commercial and organisational reality.

This balance creates an achievable plan that creates the maximum value for the customer and the business.

This subset of questions from our Customer Capability Assessment will help you identify the quick wins:

  1. What are the commercial realities around targets and budgets?
  2. What do your customers need and which channels do they use?
  3. What can your channels deliver and how does that match customer needs?

The following case study from Vodafone offers guidance on how this works in reality.

Cross-channel lead management at Vodafone

Vodafone Netherlands wanted to engage business prospects across multiple channels with content that was personalised. Critically the company wanted to ensure that data collected from across all of the channels was integrated centrally to optimise the ongoing campaigns.

Like many enterprise organisations, Vodafone had pools of data collected by individual departments that wasn’t merged, deduplicated or analysed at an individual customer level.

As customers hopped channels they found a lack of consistency in the offers they were receiving.

With the commercial goal to generate and convert more leads, Vodafone built a lead nurturing program that didn’t require major changes to business systems.

The result was a cross-channel programme with integration of customer data to ensure that customers received the right message across the most effective channel.

Vodafone's cross channel lead nurtuoring program

Once implemented the program lead to four-fold increase in conversions with open rates of 60% and click through rates of 25%.

Vodafone were also able to collect 100% of the mandatory information required from customers. This matching created an enriched picture of the customer’s preferences and enabled Vodafone to make consistent offers to the customer.

Key takeaways to create an integrated customer experience

To create an integrated customer experience, Matt and Stephen recommend the following steps:

  • You need a clear view on where you want/need to get to, but some principles could be enough to start with.
  • Focus on proving value and building momentum.
  • Be flexible.
  • Give as much thought, if not more, to the organisational change that is needed as the technology.
  • Think big, start small

You can download a copy of the Integrated Customer Experience Report here.