What is Real-Time Interaction Management?
Let’s break it down the Merriam-Webster way:
- Real Time: the actual time during which something takes place
- Interaction: mutual or reciprocal action or influence
- Management: judicious use of means to accomplish an end
The 5 Ws way:
- Who: It’s all about the customers
- What: Delivering a personalized experience based on what we know about the customers
- Where: Where they are
- When: When they’re there
- Why: Because customers are people. And people want to be acknowledged for who they are, not who you think they should be. It’s a relationship, a value exchange, that serves both customer and company. It’s not just a flyer passed out in the crowd.
And the Forrester Research way:
Enterprise marketing technology that delivers contextually relevant experiences, value, and utility at the appropriate moment in the customer lifecycle via preferred customer touchpoints.
Speaking of Forrester, Marigold Engage+ was recently included in Now Tech: Real-Time Interaction Management, Forrester’s Overview of 42 RTIM Providers. The report offers a solid explanation of what RTIM actually is, guidance on what you should look for in an RTIM partner, and a list of relevant vendors and their positions in the market.
Forrester suggests a few key capabilities to look for when evaluating RTIM solutions:
- Recognition of unique customers and the pairing of contextual insights to deliver the right experience in the right channel
- Determination and orchestration of the next best experience based on information you’ve collected about the person
- Measurement of customer outcomes and continuous optimization to provide the best possible interaction for and lasting impression on the customer
The report also describes how internal organizations need to implement a successful RTIM strategy. The right provider can help to enable these efforts, but the entire company needs to rally around a focus on the customer. It’s not just about marketing. And it’s not just a singular technology. Without the collaboration and integration of teams and technologies, the full value of RTIM—and of the customer—will never be realized.
Forrester’s vendor analysis was based on market presence and functionality. Marigold Engage+’s data platform, cross-channel marketing, and personalization capabilities were cited as reasons for inclusion in Forrester’s overview. We proudly stand by our ever-evolving offerings to help marketers build lasting and mutually-rewarding relationships with their customers. You see, Cheetah goes beyond traditional marketing. We embrace a more immersive and engaging interaction with customers through relationship marketing and treating customers like the unique individuals they are.
At Cheetah, we believe that:
- You can—and should—make every interaction a moment of value
- Connecting across channels is key
- Personalization at scale is expected
The world has moved away from telling customers what we want them to hear in the place and way we prefer. The focus is now on the customer. Understand the customer, know their needs and their wants, where they are, and when they’re there. But pay attention, because things change. People change. This is why we need to adapt to a customer’s needs in real time. What they wanted yesterday may not be what they need today. Serving them yesterday’s wants can convey a lack of effort and empathy. Why would anyone want to be in that kind of relationship?
It’s no longer a one-way street. What was B2C is now B2C2B2C2B2C…you get the idea. It’s a value exchange. Customer-focused businesses provide what people want, where they are and, in turn, those people come back for more. We all know that a lifetime customer is vastly more valuable than a one-time customer. But those kinds of relationships need to be nurtured, so we continue to learn more about them and respond accordingly to achieve the best experience for all. The customer gains a brand they trust that delivers a personalized experience, and they save time from having to find a new place to spend their money. The business gains a lucrative relationship with a loyal customer, and saves time and money from wasted efforts on improperly positioned promotion.
But with the heightened awareness and protection of privacy these days, how do we get the kind of personal information we need to customize an engaging experience? Yeah, we hear that a lot. And we feel you. But guess what we found out:
90% of consumers will share data with a brand if it offers the right value exchange
You offer value (think personalized offers, targeted services, customized messaging) and they’ll share their information. You then use that information to deliver more value. Repeat.
Without the information they intentionally share with you (zero-party data), you can’t personalize their experience. If you don’t deliver a personalized experience, they won’t share their information with you. Chicken ↔ egg.
It’s a conundrum, but a solvable one. And, in case you’re wondering, we can help you with that.