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Data-driven marketing insights are vital in this time of anxiety

Neerav Vyas
20 Mar 2023

As inflation bites into buying power, almost eight in 10 consumers are looking for help from companies. That’s a golden opportunity to build lifetime relationships.

In times of uncertainty, companies may be tempted to curtail investments – and foregoing technology upgrades can seem like a prudent strategy. But for marketing teams, it’s essential to prioritize data-driven marketing investments now – helping them better understand their current and potential customers.

For many brands, 2023 has certainly started off on an uncertain footing. Inflation and higher energy bills have eroded consumer confidence – resulting in lower revenues and tighter margins for many organizations. In this environment, marketing executives are looking for flexibility in how they spend their budgets. They’re not necessarily slashing budgets, but rather are deferring spending to make sure they’re investing marketing dollars where they will have the greatest impact.

Determining that is only possible with insights derived from high-quality data. In an era defined by consumer demand for personalized engagements with companies, it’s more imperative than ever for organizations to invest in how they collect, manage, and use data about their consumer relationships.

At the same time, growing consumer awareness of privacy issues has placed increasing requirements upon enterprises to ensure their data-driven activities do not run afoul of regulations or betray customer trust.

Changing purchasing patterns present opportunities

There’s no question that consumers today are anxious. In the 2023 edition of its annual research series, What matters to today’s consumer, the Capgemini Research Institute noted that 61 percent of those questioned in late 2022 were “extremely concerned” about their personal financial situation. Many respondents were worried about the cost of feeding their families and buying other essential items.

The rise in their cost of living has prompted many consumers to change their purchasing patterns – with 69 percent of those asked saying they’re cutting back on non-essential items, 73 percent making fewer impulse purchases, and 65 percent switching to private label and other lower-cost brands.

Meanwhile, 58 percent of respondents reported spending more time searching online to find deals or discounts while 57 percent said when shopping, they now regularly visit multiple stores in a quest for the best pricing.

These are significant challenges for brands – but there are also opportunities. Capgemini’s report notes that as inflation bites into their buying power and disposable income, 78 percent of those surveyed would be more loyal to companies that help them through this difficult time. Meanwhile, 74 percent said they would remember those companies that help, and would buy more products and services from them in the future.

That indicates there is a clear upside for companies that are perceived to be helpful. Brands that assist customers with their current cost-of-living challenges can build loyalty and deliver higher customer lifetime value. But before they can offer that help, companies need to gain the best possible understanding of their current and potential customers.

The era of real-time marketing insights

Real-time insights enable brands to connect and engage with their audiences at the right moment with contextual and personalized experiences, while building relationships that last. A properly designed and implemented data-driven marketing strategy enables marketing teams to positively influence all stages of the customer journey – from awareness and consideration, to purchase and advocacy. What’s more, this approach can provide the insights needed to improve product innovation and development, pricing, and promotions.

In its September 2021 report, A new playbook for chief marketing officers: Why CMOs should enable real-time marketing to drive sustained growth, the Capgemini Research Institute outlined how the rapid growth of ecommerce has increased the need for real-time insights. These help companies effectively capitalize on fast-changing consumer behavior by enhancing digital-commerce campaigns across both their own online assets – such as websites, apps, and email campaigns – as well as via paid placements on platforms owned by others.

Done right, data-driven marketing outcomes include increased brand awareness, higher conversion rates, more customer satisfaction, and better customer retention. In short – a positive and memorable customer experience. Here are a couple of examples of what that might look like.

  • A customer is shopping for food from a company with several brands. The company knows the customer has a peanut allergy, and so uses targeted communication to highlight products from across its portfolio that are made in nut-free facilities. It can also alert the customer if they’ve inadvertently added a product containing nuts to their shopping cart. The customer’s takeaway is: “This company cares about my health.”
  • An apparel company knows a customer wears several of its brands – from high-end to discount. Based on past purchases, the company can develop a style and color profile for the customer. Whenever the customer visits one of its brand’s websites, it highlights new arrivals that complement what the customer already owns – including what they’ve purchased from the company’s other brands. The customer’s takeaway is: “This company helps by making it easy for me to look good.”

Success strategies

In Capgemini’s experience, organizations looking to better understand their customers should answer some key questions, including:

What is the opportunity? Identifying customer problems the company can solve is a great place to start.

What should the customer experience look like? Identifying the desired customer experience is important, so everyone in the organization understands the goal.

How does the company know what the customers need or want? The research and data points should be clearly defined, so gaps can also be identified and addressed.

The Connected Marketing Engine

While some organizations have built their business around their own, proprietary marketing analytics platform, in-house data science and engineering teams are expensive and most companies cannot commit the human or financial resources they require.

To fill that need, Capgemini created its Connected Marketing offering. It includes solutions for brand management, content marketing, customer activation, marketing organization, and marketing technology to deliver real-time data-driven marketing insights into customer expectations. Capgemini enhanced this offering in 2022 with the launch of the Connected Marketing Engine. Built using Adobe technology – including Adobe Journey Orchestration, Adobe Journey Optimizer, Adobe Analytics, and Adobe Launch – this end-to-end portfolio of capabilities and services helps organizations master the complexities of marketing in the digital landscape. It’s flexible enough to make a difference for a single department or brand, and completely scalable so it can be deployed across the enterprise.

The Connected Marketing Engine empowers marketing teams to deliver real-time, seamless, contextual, omnichannel engagements with customers. These connections help build trust and loyalty even as they enable brands to improve the return on investment in their marketing campaigns. The payoff is that the relationships fostered during these lean times will be poised to flourish as inflation recedes and consumer confidence returns.

Join us at Adobe Summit for a live Connected Marketing Engine demo.

To learn more about the Connected Marketing Engine and how Capgemini’s Connected Marketing can transform your company’s customer-engagement experience, get in touch with Neerav by clicking on the email button below.


Neerav Vyas

Head of Customer, Co-Chief Innovation Officer, Insights & Data, North America
Neerav is an outstanding leader, helping organizations accelerate innovation, drive growth, and facilitate large-scale transformation. He is a two-time winner of the Ogilvy Award for Research in Advertising and an AIconics 2019 and 2020 finalist for Innovation in Artificial Intelligence for Sales and Marketing.