Travel And Retail Marketers Under Most Pressure

In B2C markets, digital marketers, trying to acquire new customers, face growing competition and increasing pressure from executives. But the obstacles they need to overcome, rising costs, consumer privacy concerns, and the challenge of differentiating their brand in a noisy marketplace, are just as formidable. This paper shows how marketers are responding.

“The State of Customer Acquisition” from SheerID examines marketers’ experience as they wrestle with these problems, and the channels, tactics and promotional strategies they’re using to meet them, says the report. The report also identifies how marketers plan to spend their budgets, and how promotions, discounts and gated offers are creating new acquisition opportunities in the highly competitive retail, travel and financial services industries.

Key insights from the study include: 

  • 77% of marketers agree that their teams are under more pressure to meet acquisition and revenue goals versus last year. Marketers in travel (97%) and retail (81%) are under the most pressure on average, says the report.
  • Marketers say promotions and discounts are important components in their customer acquisition strategy.  A lack of differentiation prevents them from achieving higher conversion rates with their promotions, and many said they would be interested in using or learning more about gated offers as a customer acquisition tool.
  • 47% of respondents are customer experience experts. Most of the remaining respondents are customer acquisition (27%) and customer retention or loyalty (24%) experts. Two percent of respondents have some other role. In each case, nearly one-quarter of respondents are in retail (24%) and financial services (21%) industries. Twenty percent of respondents are in the travel industry. The remaining respondents are in the food services (18%) and consumer-packaged goods (17%) industries.
Sheer ID partnered with WBR Insights to survey 150 leaders in customer acquisition across five different consumer-facing industries. Most respondents represent B2C companies generating $1 billion or more in annual revenue. The vast majority of respondents are directly involved in customer engagement and acquisition initiatives.

When it comes to meeting acquisition and revenue goals, most digital marketers feel like they’re up against a wall. 77% said their teams are under more pressure than last year, and in some industries it’s even worse. 97% of travel marketers and 81% of retail marketers are feeling the squeeze. The only group that saw any relief was executives. Just 33% of c-suite members felt the pressure.

Marketers are racing to succeed, but their efforts to make their brand voice heard are being drowned out by a deluge of competing messages. Even with targeted advertising, marketers face fierce competition from companies attempting to reach the same groups of consumers.

The survey revealed that when it comes to customer acquisition, 23% of marketers, the most respondents among six categories, claim differentiation from competitors is their most challenging problem. The urgent need to stand out is driving more frequent promotions across industries.

Marketers’ efforts to reach their buyers are also imbedded by a lack of control of their data. They implement a range of programs, but information compliance and privacy laws restrain their efforts and prevent them from maximizing their results. 19% of marketers rate privacy concerns, and/or privacy regulations, as their most challenging problem in customer acquisition; 21% rate this as their second most challenging problem.

The report concludes by noting that Marketers today are under tremendous pressure to acquire new customers. Their greatest challenge is finding a way to differentiate their brand in a highly competitive and noisy marketplace, and the problem is compounded by growing privacy concerns and high acquisition costs.




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