In theory, a high-quality product or service should sell itself and effortlessly rack up a growing list of happy, lifelong customers, but getting your target market to pay attention to your brand is just not that simple.

With the combination of competing products and services available at the click of a button and shortened consumer attention spans, engaging leads is becoming increasingly difficult. It’s a widespread challenge: In fact, Ecommerce Times found 60% of digital marketing professionals reported “difficulty in reaching their target audience with messaging and content.”

Consumers Prefer Personalization

To stay afloat in this increasingly competitive business environment, marketers have to get creative to capture their distracted audiences’ attention. The strategy that’s working? Targeting leads with relevant offers based on what you know they’re interested in.

When people see ads and receive emails that are catered to them, they are much more likely to feel a connection with the brand and become loyal customers. In fact, Digital Trends says “73% of consumers prefer to do business with brands that use personal information to make their shopping experiences more relevant.”

The bottom line is people crave personalization, and brands able to cater to that craving are more likely to earn customers and brand loyalty than those that do not.
Guide to Gathering Customer Data

According to Guide to Gathering Customer Data, “The bottom line is people crave personalization, and brands able to cater to that craving are more likely to earn customers and brand loyalty than those that do not.”

Use Customer Data to Outmarket Your Competition

To provide leads with these kinds of personalized experiences, you need data. You need to understand not only their demographics, but also what challenges they’re having that your brand can solve, or what specific interests they have within the realm of your products and services.

Segmented marketing driven by customer data is more efficient, more effective and a better allocation of resources than mass marketing. Instead of blindly releasing your products to your contact list with a single marketing message, customer data gives you the power to hyper-target individual contacts based on their known interests.  

Marketing expert Nicole Molkentin says, “In today’s marketing world, the way that brands can differentiate themselves from competitors is by creating an emotional connection between the customer and the brand. This means customization, self-expression and storytelling throughout marketing campaigns.”

How to Collect Customer Data

One of the most essential ways to collect customer information online is to create a series of strategic web forms, each designed to provide you with the information you need to target and communicate in relevant ways with each contact.

This typically begins with forms that capture new lead information, such as their name, email, and what they’ve come to your site looking for. With that pain point in mind, you can then automatically segment the new lead into a campaign that involves emails about how your business solves that specific problem.

Throughout their experience with your brand, you can continue using brief, iterative forms or survey forms to gradually build intelligence on your contacts. This helps you build a full profile of your target market so you can provide the kind of personalized outreach that captures attention.

Collecting customer data will give you the tools you need to:

  • Create thoughtful campaigns personalized for your leads and customers that will catch their attention among the noisy marketplace.
  • Give leads and customers a top-notch experience with your brand so that they keep coming back.
  • Target leads and customers based on their known interests so that you can better sell to them.
  • Understand your existing customers so that you can find more qualified leads like them.
  • Segment your list into interest categories so that you can make your marketing efforts more personalized and efficient.
  • Learn more about your customers and leads’ purchasing behaviors so that you can predict their next moves.

If you’re interested in more details about ways you can capture the customer data you need to create rich segmented lists, the Guide to Gathering Customer Data has various examples you can use.

About Camille Smith
Originally from the Blue Ridge Mountains in Virginia, Content Marketing Strategist, Camille Smith came out to California to attend UCSB and fell in love with Santa Barbara’s perfect mountain to ocean ratio. During her time in college, Camille also worked on the growth marketing teams for several technology companies. When she’s not putting her Communication degree to use at work, she’s using her minor in French to remind everyone the correct pronunciation of her name à la française (pronounced cah-mee, not kah-meal).