In our 2016 State of Marketing Technology report we discovered that 83% of businesses are now using a content management systems (CMS), placing it as their most commonly used piece of marketing software. However, going into 2017, many marketers could be missing out on the true value these platforms can offer to their wider marketing strategies and ROI.
A CMS provides marketers with the tools to create, share and manage digital content, and this should remain a core function of the platform. However, our research also revealed that over half of marketers struggle to confidently use marketing technologies beyond the initial investment (53%). There is much more to a CMS than marketers realise and it is imperative that they are thinking outside of the box when utilising these technologies if they are to use them to their full potential.
Driving loyalty through integration
The customer mindset is the most important one to be in when making any marketing decision, and this logic needs to be applied to a CMS too. Research by Verint and IDC discovered that the digital age has made it more difficult for brands to hold on to customers as technological innovation creates more choice and opportunity for consumers. When browsing through a brand’s website, customers want an integrated, seamless experience to drive their purchase decision, otherwise the opportunity presents itself for the customer to look elsewhere if dissatisfied with the service.
To ensure a seamless customer journey, it is integral that the CMS runs smoothly when used in conjunction with other platforms, such as Customer Relationship Management (CRM) systems and other digital tools. For marketers to engage in real-time, and convert web visitors into loyal customers, they need to integrate all tools across the organisation. This will allow them to enhance and analyse customer behaviour so that the marketing department becomes a highly-valued hub for customer insights that can be utilised across the business.
Customer insights create compelling content
A CMS can help businesses break down customer insights and build content that is relevant and timely to them. This starts with understanding exactly what pieces of content are of interest to a customer via integrations or in-product analytics. This then determines what types of content will be of interest to that customer for the foreseeable future.
Being able to deliver tailored, engaging content means the customer is at the centre of the CMS strategy. This highly personalised content can consequently be shared across the business and other technology platforms, helping businesses to utilise all channels when communicating with users at all stages of the decision-making journey.
Our 2016 report also discovered that over half of marketers (51%) have difficulty reacting to new channels or devices. However, as consumers are now interacting with brands across a range of different devices at varying times, cross-device and channel integration must an important part of the CMS strategy. The CMS needs to provide personalised content that is engaging for the reader and responds to their needs.
In 2017, marketers have to prioritise multi-device strategies and their level of understanding. This will allow brands to recognise the importance of CMS in bolstering strategies and goals. Which in turn, maintains an integrated, seamless end-to-end customer journey and enables the brand to deliver whatever the customer wants, whenever they want it.
Customer behaviour is in a constant state of change, over the last year this has sped up and 2017 won’t be any different. However, it is extremely important that marketers make sure they react to changes and always have a full understanding when taking advantage of systems that are already in place. By making use of the tools around them, marketers will make quick-wins that place them at the core of the business and imperative to growth and ROI.
By Stephen Morgan, co-founder of Squiz
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