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A marketer's paradox of strategy vs. practice
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Just 20 years ago, a customer who wanted to contact a company had to either write a letter or pick up the phone. Both activities were relatively expensive in time and labour, so few customers took the trouble. And no one expected an instant answer.
The proliferation of digital communications channels over the last 15 years has swept these assumptions away. Two-thirds of consumers expect a same-day response to queries about a product or service. 43% expect a response within an hour.
Brands are rising to the challenge. There is an increasing emphasis on, and understanding of, best practice in brand communications. There’s also a growing appreciation of how the customer experience impacts brand sentiment, long-term engagement, and long-term loyalty and retention.
Given that it costs up to 25 times as much to acquire a customer as to retain one,² brands have no choice but to rise to the challenge. Marketers must apply best practice to each comms channel, using each channel either as part of the entire customer-journey strategy or in line with an organisation-wide plan for making the most of lifetime customer value. By integrating communications in an end-to end customer-experience strategy, brands can increase customer loyalty, improve engagement, and grow return on marketing investment.
For this report we surveyed 139 of the UK’s leading marketing professionals. These are professionals working at advertising agencies and in-house for some of the country’s biggest brands. Over a third of respondents work for companies with more than 1,000 employees and 30% work at companies turning over more than £100m a year.
We asked them a series of questions about their priorities, their current methodologies, and their plans for the future. This report explains what their answers reveal about the state of the digital-marketing industry and customer experience.
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