Addressability: The New Term for Digital Marketing
For retail brands, here's the more appropriate headline: If your customers think your digital communications are "creepy," you're not doing it correctly.
Addressability requires a new synergy of capabilities, process and skills from the three major digital disciplines:
- Infrastructure: A database that fits your business model, with modular design that adapts to the highly organic/evolving tech stack; a data management platform that appropriately harnesses personally identifiable information (PII) and mobile data, instead of shallow and soon-to-be obsolete cookie data; and advanced email platform design vs. treating email as a "free" marketing tool.
- Analytics: A process that harnesses the expertise of dedicated analysts to continuously synthesize a brand's first-party data with deep, rich third-party data. Results? Iterative and robust segmentation and insights; effective and accurate audience modeling; mapping and prioritizing real-time media behavior; and fact-based marketing attribution.
- Plan execution: Programmatic media/platform execution focused on message optimization, not impressions tonnage, based on insights-driven plan design; life cycle and purchase cycle alignment; location and timing proximity; and test-verified creative design for myriad platforms and devices.
Yes, marketing terms and definitions matter. For retail, the term is addressability, and the definition is connected CRM. Digital can be personal, relevant and effective without being "creepy." A deep understanding of your customers brings effective brand engagement without the trench coat image.
If Drucker were alive today, he would excoriate retail marketers for debating, instead of acting on, the game-changing opportunity of digital. Let's get going.
Karlin Linhardt is vice president, strategic partnerships, for Merkle, a performance marketing agency specializing in data-based marketing solutions.