Email beats all other forms of customer outreach by up to 108 percent, with half of consumers reporting they have purchased a product directly as a result of an email they received in the last 12 months.
That’s according to Cheetah Digital’s 2022 digital consumer trends index, which explores global attitudes and trends in personalization, privacy, messaging, advertising and brand loyalty based on responses from 5,404 consumers across seven countries.
Looking at specific formats, email outperforms SMS by 92 percent, and banner ads by 39 percent. However, consumers interact with a brand on multiple channels, oftentimes unpredictably—on an average of six digital touchpoints to be exact.
What these touchpoints have in common is they can all be directly accessed by consumers through mobile. With 52 percent of consumers saying they’ve purchased a product or service in-app, mobile is no longer a nice-to-have—it’s a must-have. According to Cheetah Digital’s findings, here are some more reasons why:
- 52 percent of consumers have purchased a product or service in-app.
- 52 percent of consumers have used a mobile phone while in a store to research or help them decide on which purchase to make.
- 47 percent have browsed for products in a physical store but made the purchase online.
- There’s been a 19 percent year-on-year (YOY) increase in consumers who have brought something because of an email they viewed on their mobile phone
Above all else, 80 percent of consumers like consistent shopping experiences regardless of the channel. For this reason, marketers must listen and respond on all channels and ensure all of that data flows in and out of a single source of truth. This requires a unified customer profile that includes, for example, the customer’s most important identifying information, the channels and interactions they’ve had with your organization and their transaction history, among others.
When thinking about how their favorite brand communicates with them, the overwhelming majority of consumers want the relationship to go beyond the purely transactional, finds Cheetah Digital. Here’s how consumers view their favorite brands and loyalty:
- 80 percent of consumers have a favorite brand as it provides a consistent customer experience.
- 78 percent of consumers have a favorite brand as it rewards them for their loyalty.
- 74 percent of consumers have a favorite brand as it uses their data in a way that makes them feel comfortable.
- 74 percent of consumers have a favorite brand as it treats them like an individual.
- 71 percent of consumers have a favorite brand as it strives to develop a relationship.
- 64 percent of consumers have a favorite brand as it surprises them with unexpected rewards.
- 58 percent of consumers have a favorite brand as it treats them like a VIP.
Consumers become frustrated when messages they receive from brands aren’t personalized or include irrelevant content or offers. As many as 41 percent are bothered by messages that don’t reflect their wants and needs and almost one-third don’t feel a brand has even recognized their shopping or loyalty history.
That’s not all they’re irritated about. Thirty-five percent of consumers are frustrated by messaging seemingly based on information that they didn’t share directly with the brand. Given that personalization is at the core of relationship marketing, marketers must deliver a number of indispensable elements when engaging customers—including value, relevancy and meaningful experiences based on information gathered respectfully and openly/directly. From now on, third-party or purchased data and any that may have been collected via tracking are out and transparency is in.
Despite the benefits and utility of messaging opportunities based on transaction data, marketers’ personalization and messaging strategies must be based on first- and zero-party data in order for those messages to be unique. Here are a few reasons why:
- 49 percent of consumers were frustrated when they received irrelevant content or offers.
- 41 percent of consumers were frustrated by messaging that didn’t reflect their wants and needs.
- 35 percent of consumers were frustrated when they received messaging based on information that they hadn’t shared directly with the brand.
- 31 percent of consumers were frustrated when they received messaging that didn’t recognize their shopping or loyalty history.
Overall, consumers are content with the amount of messaging they receive from brands regardless of whether they’re via email, apps, social media or SMS. Consumers feel they get just the right amount of messaging or would even be open to receiving more messaging about:
- Treats (73 percent)
- Free delivery offers (72 percent)
- Loyalty programs (71 percent)
- Discounts (70 percent)
- VIP offers (68 percent)
- Brand value (65 percent)
- Sales (55 percent)
When it comes to feeling overwhelmed by messaging, the figures are, in the majority, positive. Consumers feel overwhelmed by the quantity of messaging regarding:
- Sales (16 percent)
- Brand value (12 percent)
- VIP offers (12 percent)
- Discounts (11 percent)
- Loyalty programs (11 percent)
- Treats (10 percent)
- Free delivery offers (10 percent)
Brands stand to gain a loyal following if they’re able to connect with their customers on the right channel, with the right message and at the right time, says Cheetah Digital.
Top drivers of customer brand loyalty include having a great product or service and good customer service. Beyond these, customers value a brand’s loyalty program and convenience.