In the complex landscape of contemporary commerce, the undeniable impact of technology is evident. However, within the thriving markets of Sub-Saharan Africa, the potential of MarTech, an amalgamation of marketing and technology, remains relatively untapped, constituting less than 7% of the region’s marketing expenditure. As someone deeply enmeshed in this dynamic landscape, I’m compelled to shed light on the uncharted potential that MarTech holds for businesses in our region.
MarTech, the amalgamation of tools fuelling the intersection of marketing and technology, is far more than a buzzword—it’s the engine propelling our campaigns, optimizing customer engagement, and propelling growth. It encompasses a spectrum of solutions, from Customer Relationship Management (CRM) to Sales automation, each a thread contributing to the fabric of success.
In the MarTech arena, sales automation tools are the unsung heroes, orchestrating everything from prospecting to nurturing leads. Brands I’ve come to trust and recommend, such as HubSpot, Marketo, Google, Netcore, and Optimove, facilitate this seamless orchestration. Meanwhile, the bedrock of streamlined customer interaction lies in CRM systems. These platforms—think Salesforce, Freshdesk, Zoho CRM, and Zendesk—provide a central hub for managing business relationships and related data.
Enter the realm of customer support solutions, offering invaluable helpdesks, knowledge bases, and virtual assistants. Powerhouses like Zendesk and 3CX shine here, fostering enhanced engagement and interaction with customers. The potential of MarTech is immense, yet the prevailing trend showcases underutilization and reliance on instinct rather than data-backed decisions.
In Nigeria and beyond, businesses possess data management platforms (DMPs) that brim with potential. However, the challenge lies in effectively harnessing this treasure trove of insights across various channels. Our journey through the MarTech landscape encompasses five pivotal concepts: Transformation, Data, Operations & Management, Experience, and Performance. Each concept interweaves into a strategic tapestry, guiding us through a comprehensive martech-led e-commerce strategy.
To solve the problem of data mismanagement:
Step 1: Initiating data collection
Our journey embarks with the activation of a data collection layer. This pivotal step involves setting up an extensive array of data collection points, including a robust web platform, mobile platform, CRM platform, mobile app, and store/POS system. By laying this essential groundwork, we establish a solid foundation upon which forthcoming insights will be built.
Step 2: Unifying and segmenting collected data
Proceeding with unification and segmentation, we harness the capabilities of Cloud and Data Warehouse systems to establish a cohesive “Unified Customer Database.” This pivotal foundation is further fortified by the inclusion of a Predictive Engine, enabling the construction of predictive, behavioural, and historical segments. These stratified elements collectively lay the groundwork for the implementation of precise, cost-effective marketing strategies.
Step 3: The action layer
Here, our journey converges into actionable insights. Distinct strategies unfold for both known and unknown users. For the unknown, we employ the desktop web, mobile web, mobile app, A/B modules, and segmentation for ad channels. On the flip side, known users receive engagement through app pushes, web pushes, email, SMS, WhatsApp, Facebook, and Google.
But how are e-commerce brands harnessing MarTech to boost sales and embrace the latest trends?
• Personalization for New Users: Crafting tailored shopping experiences can boost spending by over 40% among customers.
• Conversion Push: Retargeting users who abandoned their forms before completing a purchase, via browser notifications, triggers a recall and completes the transaction.
• Social Proof Triggers: Leveraging social proof—showing how many users are interested in a product—helps persuade hesitant shoppers.
• Enhancing ROAS & Performance Max campaigns via Google Ads: A holistic approach involving product feeds and audience signals can maximize Return on Ad Spend.
• Live Chat Investments: Deploying live chat or chatbots can significantly enhance user engagement and conversion.
• Nurturing Customer Satisfaction with Push Notifications: Utilizing push notifications for order updates, delivery information, and product news ensures timely, relevant engagement.
• Product Comparison and Cart Reminders: Empowering users to compare products and sending cart reminders boosts conversions.
• Price Alerts: Notifying users of price changes adds urgency to purchase decisions.
• Multi-channel Purchases: Creating a seamless multichannel experience across platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and more is paramount.
• Embracing Voice Search: Capitalizing on the rise of voice search through platforms like Alexa yields futuristic dividends.
• WhatsApp Opt-in: Exploring WhatsApp as a channel for direct engagement further enriches the customer experience.
• In-App Stories: Story-based personalization offers a captivating route to introducing products and promotions.
• Auto-Merchandising: Capitalizing on special promotions by strategically merchandising excess stock and bundles.
In this tech-driven landscape, the synergy between technology and insights is paramount. Let’s not merely accumulate technology, but rather cultivate insights that transform our MarTech endeavours into triumphs.
Olayiwola is a seasoned marketing and business leader, adept at deciphering business intricacies, market dynamics, and organizational ecosystems for lasting enterprises.