The Power of Customer Engagement and Event Driven Marketing

CE and EBM

Customer engagement (CE) is interactions among customers or between customer and an enterprise/company/brand.  Traditionally engagement had been a relationship of one – many form, where an enterprise would communicate with many customers at the same time without any relevant information about customers.  Channels for such engagement used to be – TV, Billboards, Newspapers, and Magazines etc.

With the advent of Internet, social media and more advanced technology tools, CE has been completely changed and got more contextual w.r.t customers.  Enterprises are now analyzing big/fast data, monitoring each customer interaction to understand what/where/when their customers want and they are using this information in CE.  In other words, marketing is moving from mass to contextual & transactional marketing.

Challenges: Marketers always faced various challenges to engage customers, some of them are-
– Who are our customers?
– What do we know about them, what they want?
– Customer’s requirements are dynamic and changing very fast.
– Too little and scattered information

John Wanamaker, father of modern marketing, described this problem using famous quote:

“Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is I don’t know which half.”

It’s because of these challenges, the traditional ‘Spray and Pray’ marketing doesn’t work.  Now, every organization wants to acquire new customers while retaining old ones, increase their lifetime value and convert them in to loyal customers.

Real time fan manager – Event driven Marketing

Traditional marketing organizations typically start with content, and then leverage their customer relationship management (CRM) data to create customer profiles and segments at which that content is targeted.  Yet CRM data may not tell the full story, since CRM systems only provide static snapshots of customer interactions after the fact and through historical reporting. These snapshots occur after the customer has become unhappy, after the customer has left the store or website, and after the customer has abandoned the shopping cart.

Moreover, CRM’s 20th century database-driven architectures are not designed to handle data-in-motion, characterized by large volumes of data traveling at varying speeds across an increasing number of channels. The result of traditional marketing campaigns is a blanketing of a large segment of customers with generic offers in hopes that a small percentage (typically less than 2 percent) will respond.

In order to fully engage the customer, it is important to understand not only the customer’s profile, but also gain a 360 degree view of the customer’s interactions across all channels, both historical and in real time. To accomplish this, organizations must be able to positively affect a customer’s experience while the customer is still on the virtual or actual premise (website, mobile app, etc.) and still engaged.

For example, a customer in San Francisco City is walking past a store in 90-degree weather, and their transactional history suggests they’ve never bought sunscreen. They receive an offer delivered in real time to their mobile phone for a newly launched sunscreen lotion.

This is event-based marketing resulting in contextual offer driven by real time events and historical data. No amount of historical data could have prepared us to deliver as the situation above developed. That doesn’t mean historical data isn’t valuable, but when it’s combined with other factors in real-time, we have a context for knowing and rewarding customers that makes all the difference.

Architecture of Event driven Marketing platform

CE The above product-agnostic diagram represents, reference architecture of high-level components that comprise an agile, event driven, enterprise implementation of a Customer Engagement Framework.

There are four major components:

Inference Subsystem – It’s a purpose-built, self-service business user interface allows the business to define marketing rules that will affect customer experience and behavior through the use of nouns and verbs in compound conditional statements.  These rules are executed by Rule execution engine.

Big Data Subsystem –  That’s the big data area where new actionable insights are discovered and later converted in to marketing rules inside user interface.

Channel Subsystems –  That’s where engagement with customers happens both inbound and outbound. Examples of these channels are: In- store, online, email etc.

Aggregation/Transformation Subsystems – These are enterprise level source systems, which can be integrated to define a common data model.

Ankit Goel

Ankit Goel

Enterprise Architect at TIBCO Engage
Ankit Goel

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  • Good article and definitely your detailed analysis about CE is buzzing trend.