Behavioral Data A Mystery For Some Marketers: Forrester Consulting Study

Marketers are missing opportunities to apply customer behavioral data to optimize the customer journey across channels. They know the benefits, but are uncertain how to use the data once they have it, according to a study released by Forrester Consulting.

Some 75% generate insights from signals collected, but more than 60% do not incorporate customer behavioral signals into their customer engagement strategies, the data shows.

Forrester Consulting conducted the online survey of 1,203 customer engagement decision makers at organizations in North America, EMEA, Asia Pacific, and Latin America to evaluate the collection and use of customer behavioral data in marketing and customer engagement strategies.

The study, Strengthen Customer Retention And Engagement With Behavioral Data, was fielded in January 2024, and released in April.



The findings suggest marketers want to expand customer data strategies to support full customer journeys, but are stuck in the early stages without a clear path. Some 68% collect marketing engagement data, such as click rates, while 63% collect standard web engagement data, such as time on page. Less than half of those surveyed collect real-time experiences, such as cart abandonment, although 75% recognize the importance of it.

Marketers want to increase the availability and type of customer behavioral data they collect and are moving to collect more. Seventy-five percent of respondents say that collecting real-time customer data is critical to the business.

Companies that have a roadmap for incorporating more advanced customer behavioral data into personalization efforts will experience improvements in key marketing and customer engagement key performance indicators, according to Forrester.

Survey respondents said these KPIs include positive impact on customer satisfaction, brand awareness, conversion rates, and return on investments (ROIs).

When survey participants were asked about their perception of how impactful behavioral intelligence can be throughout the different stages of the customer journey, 78% said it is either impactful or extremely impactful during the discovery process.

Challenges persist for many marketers. Some 67% said their organization has too many point solutions with overlapping capabilities, while 65% cited their organization can easily act on insights drawn from customer behavioral signals and 58% said they find it easy to tie the campaign’s customer behavioral signals across the customer journey.

Some 58% believe their company’s marketing technology tools integrate well, while 42% said their company’s tech can easily collect customer behavioral signals, and 32% said it can easily analyze customer behavioral signals.

Still, collecting and measuring customer behaviors and conversion rates continues to be the most challenging function.

Respondents said they struggle to understand the breadth of data their company collected and how they could factor that data into their customer engagement and retention strategies. Some 73% said they are concerned with marketing automation, 69% cited audience management and segmentation, 67% cited personalization of customer outreach, and 66% said analyzing customer data and signals.

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