Omnichannel Growth Drives Need for Customer Identity Data

Posted by Emeka Obianwu on 9/9/16 9:23 AM

Compare your shopping habits today to those of even only two years ago and chances are they look vastly different. Better e-commerce user experiences combined with rapid mobile adoption and the emergence of the Internet of Things (IoT) are making omnichannel retailing the norm, not the competitive frontrunner it once was. This new digital reality is becoming undeniably evident in the brick and mortar world as more well-known retail brands shutter physical stores and expand their online operations.

As retailers know all too well, omnichannel retailing is not easy. Reaching customers over a growing variety of different channels, apps and devices creates multiple challenges, and most of them relate back to identity data. In the old brick and mortar world, customers could remain anonymous because retailers were able to upsell and cross-sell to them while they were in the store. You could draw customers to you with a healthy mix of advertising, good customer service, quality merchandise and fair pricing, factors that didn’t depend on knowing your customers as individuals. 

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Topics: Multi-Channel Engagement

Unexpected Ways IAM Pros Can Help the CMO

Posted by Keri LeBlanc on 8/11/16 10:36 AM

The world of digital business is changing rapidly, and it's highly competitive. Companies can easily lose customers to competitors, in most cases with only a single click. This environment puts pressure on CMOs to innovate and improve customer experience on a scale and at a pace that's never been encountered before. As marketing teams accelerate their efforts to successfully drive top-line growth across a growing array of apps, devices and channels, they are running into obstacles.

The problems they face can seem unrelated, from data breach worries and proving bottom line value to meeting customers’ growing expectations. Yet look closely and you’ll recognize that many of the challenges relate to a single issue—a lack of identity management capabilities that enable marketing teams to manage, secure, and use customer identity data.

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Topics: Consumer Identity and Access Management, Multi-Channel Engagement

Customer Data Boosts ROI for Digital Marketing

Posted by Bjorn Aannestad on 7/28/16 7:30 AM

Dave Chaffey is CEO and co-founder of digital marketing advice site Smart Insights. He has been recognized as one of 50 marketing ‘gurus’ worldwide who have shaped the future of marketing by the Chartered Institute of Marketing.

UnboundID: Social media channels continue to shift. Microsoft just bought LinkedIn, SnapChat is the fastest growing social media app. Twitter seems to be on the downside. How do you view the latest changes for marketers?

Chaffey: It’s important to keep a close eye on the changing fortunes of the main social networks since those that were most effective in the past won’t necessarily work now. Marketers need to change their focus and experiment with the new organic and paid options to influence their audiences. For example, Google has recently introduced Customer Match that allows you to show ads to your customers based on data about those customers that you share with Google. Instagram and Snapchat have also introduced new ad options within the last 12 months.

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Topics: Consumer Identity and Access Management, Multi-Channel Engagement, Expert Interviews

Managing Customer Identities Across Channels Is Critical

Posted by Keri LeBlanc on 6/30/16 11:15 AM

Nicholas Einstein is VP of Research at The Relevancy Group (TRG), which provides market research and advisory services in the field of digital marketing. TRG specializes in email marketing, social marketing and identity management. Einstein was formerly VP of Professional Services at Extole, a Social Marketing platform and most recently he served as VP President of Customer Success at SocialChorus, an advocate marketing platform.

UnboundID: Email marketing is one of the oldest forms of digital marketing. Is it still a smart strategy for consumer brands?

Einstein: Yes, it is still critical and getting more so. In a recent survey by TRG, marketing executives named email as a single most effective channel for driving revenue. Enterprise brands are allocating more resources to email these days. For some time now, email has been the digital channel with the highest ROI, outranking search, display and social. We see a lot of brands switching vendors and investing several millions of dollars a year in upgrades.

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Topics: Multi-Channel Engagement, Expert Interviews

IAM Professionals Are Built-In Resource for Digital Business Transformation

Posted by Emeka Obianwu on 5/27/16 10:13 AM

Digital business is no longer an initiative that can be put off into the future. The shift from brick-and-mortar-only strategies to digital is happening fast, and companies are racing to reach their customers via the online and mobile channels where they are increasingly spending more time. Even the companies that already have a strong digital presence are focused on innovative new ways to improve customer experiences and stay ahead of the competition.

As businesses scramble to align the right resources to enable digital customer engagement, it’s easy to assume that the necessary skillsets are net new and must be acquired from outside sources. This assumption could be a costly mistake that slows down your momentum. Most enterprise organizations already have the right expertise in-house — Identity and Access Management (IAM) teams. Tapping into their knowledge and experience can prevent your business from reinventing the wheel. 

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Topics: Consumer Identity and Access Management, Multi-Channel Engagement

Identity Management Is Integral to Omnichannel Success

Posted by Emeka Obianwu on 3/17/16 8:30 AM

Mark Davis is a Consulting Enterprise Architect at Advanced Technology Group. His specialties include ecommerce, mobile web, enterprise architecture, enterprise transformation, portfolio management and data management.

UnboundID: You have been an IT architect for many years. How has the role changed over the years?

Davis: Architecture as it relates to my career path has been a constant evolution toward higher levels of strategic planning. The earliest work I did in architecture was at the application or system level; then we added systems of systems, domains, and finally the enterprise as a whole. It’s been a migration from coding to enterprise planning and transformation. Over the last 10 years, the need for enterprise architecture has popped up in most companies I worked for where it used to not exist at all. Now it is a well-funded and recognized area.

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Topics: Multi-Channel Engagement, Expert Interviews

Secrets to Multichannel Customer Experience Success

Posted by Keri LeBlanc on 8/26/15 1:25 PM

The convenience of engaging with businesses digitally at any time, on any gadget and over a choice of channels helps consumers accomplish more, faster. And they're embracing this multichannel trend whole heartedly, often using several screens simultaneously to complete a single task.

As they jump from one channel to another and back again, customers expect brands to keep up. What's more, they want personalized interactions. Recent studies have found that 87 percent of customers think brands need to put more effort into providing seamless experience across multiple channels, and 73 percent of customers prefer to do business with brands that use personal information to make their shopping experiences more relevant.1

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Topics: Customer Experience, Multi-Channel Engagement

Top 5 Mega Trends Driving Digital Transformation

Posted by Michael Tarbet on 8/19/15 9:56 AM

From the technologies that are transforming industries to the advances changing how we spend our leisure time, you don’t have to look far to see how digital innovation is shaping our world. As a business, it’s hard to proactively lead the market in the face of such rapid and widespread change. Which digital trends are going to make a lasting impact? What requires an immediate response? What changes should we be prepared to address in the future? What opportunities for growth do these trends present?

While there are vast numbers of digital trends, innovations and disruptors, five mega trends stand out in terms of their monumental impact on brands:

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Topics: Consumer Identity and Access Management, Multi-Channel Engagement

Bringing Omnichannel to Healthcare

Posted by Dave Malcolm on 8/14/15 9:30 AM

Mayur Gupta is the Senior Vice President, Head of Digital, at HealthGrades, where he leads the vision, strategy and development of the digital healthcare marketplace with emerging and innovative marketing technologies. His mission is to bring the human to the center of a fragmented healthcare ecosystem, while ultimately delivering the most relevant and seamless digital healthcare experience to consumers nationwide.

UnboundID: Describe your new role in digital marketing for a healthcare company?

Gupta: I recently moved on from Kimberly Clark to join HealthGrades. Interestingly enough, my role and the challenges within the consumer packaged goods (CPG) and healthcare industries are very similar. On the CPG side, my role was to establish a digital ecosystem leveraging emerging marketing technologies to change consumer behaviors through delivering omnichannel experiences.

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Topics: Multi-Channel Engagement, Expert Interviews

Pervasive Integration Drives Digital Marketing Success

Posted by Bjorn Aannestad on 8/5/15 9:00 AM

Greg Satell is a speaker and contributor on digital marketing and strategy for publications including Forbes and Harvard Business Review. He previously served as SVP at Moxie Interactive, a division of Publicis Groupe, and was also Co-CEO of KP Media, an integrated media publishing company.

UnboundID: Digital marketing has undergone a lot of evolutions, with mobile apps and social media still fairly new at large companies and now IoT getting a lot of buzz. Where do you think companies should focus their efforts today?

Satell: Too many marketers are chasing the last big thing and not prepping for the next thing. It’s always a last-minute rush to integrate a new technology into the existing strategy. Companies are essentially tacking on new tactics to old objectives. They don’t understand how the new thing really works. Instead, marketers should be prepared ahead of time so they can embrace something new.

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Topics: Consumer Identity and Access Management, Multi-Channel Engagement, Expert Interviews