SOURCE: Aberdeen Group

Aberdeen Group

November 12, 2009 10:00 ET

Top Performers Bank on Customer Analytics to Optimize Marketing Performance

Companies Are Harnessing the Power of Customer Analytics to Achieve Customer-Centric Marketing Improvement and Realize the Vision of Offer Optimization

BOSTON, MA--(Marketwire - November 12, 2009) - For marketers, the slogan "right customer, right offer, right channel, right time" has become a universal rallying call. Yet few have been able to achieve the vision of Offer Optimization such that the "best next action," whether it is a specific product or service, marketing message or customer service treatment, is automatically presented to customers on an individual basis.

Now, however, that vision is coming to fruition, according to a new research report published by the Aberdeen Group, a Harte-Hanks Company (NYSE: HHS), titled "Offer Optimization: Using Customer Data for Marketing Performance Improvement." This report reveals that a growing number of companies are harnessing the power of customer analytics to gain deep customer intelligence. As a result, they are able to make smarter customer relationship management decisions and obtain greater control over their marketing outcomes.

In particular, companies can optimize the multidimensional tradeoffs between their specific marketing goals and the constraints of their marketing campaigns. Data modeling techniques can determine the relative propensity of each customer to respond to specific promotions while optimization algorithms can determine the best possible match between customers, offers, and channels.

When it comes to harnessing the power of customer analytics, Aberdeen research reveals a number of striking performance disparities between Best-in-Class, Industry Average and Laggard companies. For example, Best-in-Class companies outperform Industry Average and Laggard companies in terms of customer acquisition rates by a factor of 2 and 43, respectively, and by a factor of 1.8 and 10.5 when it comes to customer retention. Best-in-Class companies also excel when it comes to customer up-sell / cross-sell effectiveness as well as overall return on marketing investment.

In addition to deploying the right set of enabling technologies, including marketing automation software and predictive modeling applications, Offer Optimization requires a combination of strategic actions and organizational capabilities. While analytic skills provide the foundation for everything from customer segmentation to marketing mix optimization, customer data first needs to be optimized for analysis and made accessible in such a way that it meets the needs of the team conducting the analysis. This requires the expertise of an operations team skilled in customer data management, including the ongoing process of data integration and cleansing.

The report includes a number of recommendations to help spur performance improvements in data-driven marketing improvement with a line of sight to achieving Offer Optimization. In addition to hiring the right organizational resources, recommended actions include integrating customer feedback management capabilities, leveraging the ubiquity of the mobile channel and implementing a process referred to as "blueprinting the ideal customer."

"Offer Optimization is a concept whose time has come," said Jeff Zabin, Research Fellow at Aberdeen Group. "The convergence of customer analytics and enabling technologies with core business processes is finally bringing to fruition that much-ballyhooed promise of one day cracking the code on the combinatorial complexities of presenting the right customer with the right offer through the right channel at the right point in time. In many ways, Offer Optimization sits at the very heart of marketing performance improvement."

A complimentary copy of this report is made available due, in part, to the following underwriters: FICO, Infor, Portrait Software and Neolane. To access a copy, visit: http://www.aberdeen.com/link/sponsor.asp?cid=6223

For additional access to complimentary Customer Management Research, please visit http://research.aberdeen.com/index.php/-customer-management

About Aberdeen Group, a Harte-Hanks Company

Aberdeen is a leading provider of fact-based research and market intelligence that delivers demonstrable results. Having benchmarked more than 30,000 companies in the past two years, Aberdeen is uniquely positioned to educate users to action: driving market awareness, creating demand, enabling sales, and delivering meaningful return-on-investment analysis. As the trusted advisor to the global technology markets, corporations turn to Aberdeen™ for insights that drive decisions.

As a Harte-Hanks Company, Aberdeen plays a key role of putting content in context for the global direct and targeted marketing company. Aberdeen's analytical and independent view of the "customer optimization" process of Harte-Hanks (Information - Opportunity - Insight - Engagement - Interaction) extends the client value and accentuates the strategic role Harte-Hanks brings to the market. For additional information, visit Aberdeen http://www.aberdeen.com or call (617) 723-7890, or to learn more about Harte-Hanks, call (800) 456-9748 or go to http://www.harte-hanks.com.

© 2009 Aberdeen Group, Inc., a Harte-Hanks Company
451 D Street, Suite 710
Boston, Massachusetts 02210-1928
Telephone: (617) 854-5200
Fax: (617) 723-7897
www.aberdeen.com

Contact Information