There's no shortage of data indicating how the consumer already has and continues to change. To succeed in retail (and retail marketing), merchants and advertisers need to keep up with what shoppers want, how they buy, and where. Sourcing, managing and making sense of all that consumer data, however, can prove challenging for many businesses.
The TouchCR platform was born out of the desire to be able to serve a consumer who is increasingly omnichannel, said Chief Innovation Officer Ritchie Hale.
“You need to be able to market with relevance,” Hale said. “Consumer brands need to get close to consumers and to understand who they are, what they're interested in, what they're likely to do next — and then to market in that context.”
TouchCR fills these needs, Hale said, noting that TouchCR works best for mid-market, consumer-facing companies.
“It's for brands in a $15 to 500 million revenue space who want to go direct-to-consumer, to understand and relate to their customers,” Hale said.
First, TouchCR integrates customer data from a number of disparate sources, pulling together transaction data from POS and eCommerce systems, behavioral data, and demographic data from first- and third-party sources.
From there, the TouchCR system manages data sets and produces actionable RFM marketing scores that update in real time. The system's personalization capabilities then enable marketers to identify trends and predict future buying behaviors for individual consumers, to capitalize on marketing opportunities and make more informed marketing decisions.
“Salesforce approached us in late 2015,” Hale said, “and asked us to commercialize the product. We worked on through 2016 to finally become a Salesforce independent software vendor on their AppExchange.”
A cloud-based solution, TouchCR can fully integrate with a number of Salesforce products. This means that marketers can move more quickly to execute effective campaigns in a number of different channels armed with the data the e-commerce marketing platform provides — anywhere from direct mail to SMS, email to in-app messaging, Hale said.
“It also allows you to dynamically build audiences on the fly,” Hale said, “which you can then send out to Google and Facebook, who push ads directly to mobile and web audiences.”
The personalization and real-time updates TouchCR provides can boost effectiveness in a number of marketing areas, noted Hale.
“Engaging with consumers in this way leads to higher open and click-through rates,” he said, “and you're driving more revenue with increased conversion rates and creating greater lifetime customer value.”
Moving forward, Hale noted that it will only become more important for retailers and marketers to understand the changing values and attitudes of their consumer base. Consumer-facing businesses more than ever need to stay on top of changes by investing in data management technologies and predictive analytics capabilities, as well as working to continuously innovate marketing strategies.
“The market is changing so fast, so we have a team delegated to that continuous process of innovation so we can keep the product moving forward,” Hale said. “We are continually innovating the product and implementing those innovations as they come into the market.”