- Brand marketers want to be able to better tap into the upgraded digital infrastructure, subscriber access and data repositories of telcos in order to the address the demands of omnichannel marketing, according to a study by the CMO Council made available to Marketing Dive. Telcos were defined by the group as mobile network operators and communications services providers, and brands are interested in deepening their partnerships with these companies.
- The study found that 81% of brand marketers surveyed said their companies are extremely, very or increasingly reliant on global customer connectivity, secure digital communications, real-time customer interaction and multichannel content delivery. Almost 50% of non-telco marketers saw a potential leadership role for telcos in offering brands an optimized framework for omnichannel engagement.
- At the same time, the study also found that telcos feel like they are falling behind in omnichannel marketing, with only 4% of subscriber-reliant telcos reporting they provide customers with a "consistent, personalized and contextually relevant experience across all traditional and digital channels." Fifty-six percent of telco marketers said non-telco companies are out-performing them in delivering a true omnichannel experience. Of course, non-telco marketers feel they are falling behind in omnichannel marketing as well, with a mere 1% report having a complete omnichannel management model in place.
Marketers across business sectors clearly understand the challenges of omnichannel marketing, but few have clear solutions to address them. This is made readily apparent in the disparities in the CMO Council's findings: While non-telco marketers see telcos as an answer to the issue, telco marketers generally don't feel they are any closer to overcoming the steep hurdles of digital transformation.
The report offers some areas where marketers can begin to address these gaps. For example, 55% of all marketers agreed that the omnichannel experience requires fully integrated channels of engagement, including social, mobile, web, contact center and in-store offerings. Customers are moving toward a mobile-centric world, Alan Depecier, VP of marketing, Royal Bank of Canada, said in the report, making it important to individualize experiences through the customer journey and properly contextualize them across different channels.
Deeper working partnerships between telcos and non-telco brands will likely result in more concrete solutions as well. While telcos can certainly learn from general brand marketers, brands are going to be increasingly reliant on telcos from a technology and infrastructure perspective, so it's imperative they start to think more strategically about these relationships now.