How to achieve that one-to-one connection as your customers navigate across channels.

Content Takeover Big Data & AnalyticsWhen done right, omnichannel marketing has the potential to not only increase brand loyalty and customer lifecycle value, but also to build trust. If the personalized experience consumers receive outweighs privacy concerns they may have, they will become more willing to share their data with you. And the rewards for the brands will be big. According to Forrester, 60 percent of consumers interact with brands they like across multiple channels. Forrester also forecasts that cross-channel sales will account for 50 percent of all U.S. retail by 2018.

Interested? Here are the four things marketers need in order to use omnichannel data to connect one-to-one with customers:

1. Individual, non-PII customer profiles

The ability to define and identify custom audiences was a huge step forward for marketers, but it falls short of true one-to-one marketing. Two consumers might both be avid purchasers of pet products, but one may search for mobile coupons while he's in a store, while the other may love to watch cat videos on your website. In order to deliver the best experience to each of them, we need to be able to create richer anonymous profiles in accordance with government and corporate data privacy policies that combine data from all customer touchpoints.

2. Data ownership at the user level

Valuable, non-personally identifiable data at the individual level may come from multiple sources, including owned digital properties, campaigns on third-party properties, third-party data providers and owned offline systems. This requires a new approach to data ownership, because third-party audience data and closed marketing suites hinder a marketer's ability to understand an individual's intent, as well as to choose the best channel for action. When a brand is able to collect first-party, cross-channel data for (Read more...) this owned data can still be sent to third-party audience data networks, including DMPs, data aggregators and demand side platforms. Data ownership also lets marketers use data from all channels to optimize the customer experience on the company's website.

3. Integration of mobile data

With mobile usage already surpassing desktop for many retailers, and mobile marketing expenditures to account for $31.1 billion by 2017 according to eMarketer, it's crucial that data from mobile interactions be included in personalization efforts. But it's not as simple as optimizing the mobile channel, because that's only part of the omnichannel customer journey. While 65 percent of multi-screen consumers begin their shopping process from a smartphone, and 68 percent use their phones in stores, they often complete the purchase at a POS, according to Forrester. Only by integrating data from mobile interactions with that from other channels can marketers get an accurate view of the journey to conversion and then optimize it.

4. Integrated analytics

Analytics enabling continual refinement of content personalization let marketers get closer and closer to that one-to-one connection. But most optimization platforms and ad retargeting solutions lack access to customer behavior on different devices. When a brand owns its first-party data and has created individual, non-PIII customer profiles that include data from all channels, it can then provide effective, one-to-one marketing across all touchpoints, online and offline. Being able to share this data with third-party marketing tools and platforms is equally important in order to interact with consumers in close to real time – and to feed data from third-party systems back into the master data layer.

These four concepts are core to the relevance and effectiveness of every retargeting, optimization, personalization, acquisition and retention program. And they are not only about meeting short-term revenue goals. They will help drive brand loyalty and customer lifetime value, the nirvana for all marketers.

Ensighten*Sponsored content in collaboration with Ensighten. Views expressed in this article are those of the guest author and do not necessarily reflect ClickZ's opinions.

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