Brands still obsessed by customer acquisition despite higher ROI on retention

New Econsultancy and Responsys report into cross-channel marketing finds nearly one-quarter of marketers still aren't conducting any relationship marketing despite recognising the importance of customer lifetime value

Companies continue to focus on acquiring customers and fail to invest in relationship marketing despite the fact that customer retention is more valuable, a new survey claims.

The second annual Cross-Channel Marketing Report, which was published by Econsultancy in association with Responsys, found 22 per cent of companies conduct no relationship marketing at all, and just 30 per cent of companies are “very committed” to the practice.

Nearly two-thirds of respondents have not yet made the move away from a campaign-centric approach, and 44 per cent say their main focus is on acquisition, compared to just 16 per cent focused mainly on retention.

This is despite the fact that 70 of respondents agreed it is cheaper to retain than acquire a customer, and 49 per cent agreed they achieve better ROI by investing in relationship over acquisition marketing. In addition, just 21 per cent thought their companies should focus more on acquisition versus retention. The majority of respondents (56 per cent) said there should be an equal focus on retention and acquisition.

The research was based on a survey of nearly 900 companies and agencies in April and May this year.

“As customer behaviours change and information is consumed from an ever greater number of channels, it will become more important to build relationships at an earlier stage of the customer decision making process,” the report stated.

“Companies switching away from static, campaign-centric models to those that place an emphasis on lifetime customer value are likely to be those that succeed in achieving sustainable and growing revenue streams in the future.”

The most common barriers preventing companies from committing to a better customer relationship cited include a lack of resources, and a lack of a clearly defined strategy. When it comes to customer retention, respondents said email and mobile messaging were the better channels, while paid search was the least relevant.

Aussie marketing budgets are up along with technology spend: Report
5 steps to conquer multi-channel marketing
Australian marketers don’t get cross-channel marketing

In a sign that more marketers are getting the importance of relationship marketing, the report did find a larger proportion of companies claim digital channels are “very integrated” with their broader marketing strategy compared to last year. However, still less than half of companies sit in this camp.

Respondents were also asked which channels offered the greatest opportunities over the next year. Social media marketing topped the list with 50 per cent of the vote, followed by email (43 per cent) and website (35 per cent).

As has been seen in the recent IAB Australia report into digital advertising spending, mobile continues to prove the growing channel of investment, and 44 per cent of marketers surveyed by Econsultancy said they are using mobile Web as part of their marketing efforts, up from 35 per cent last year.

“The mass marketing era is over, replaced by personalisation on a large scale, which is powered by data,” Responsys senior director of marketing and alliances EMEA, Simon Robertson, stated in the report.

Follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO Australia conversation on LinkedIn: CMO Australia, or join us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CMOAustralia

Signup to CMO’s new email newsletter to receive your weekly dose of targeted content for the modern marketing chief.

Join the CMO newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Supporting Association

Blog Posts

Getting your business ready for the Entrepreneurial Consumer

We all know the digital revolution has completely transformed the way consumers are interacting with brands, and that a lot of businesses are finding it hard to catch up. One way to closing this brand gap is to understand consumer behaviour and build a brand experience that meets these new needs.

Pip Stocks

CEO and founder, BrandHook

Brand management starts with management

As the world continues to grow and evolve, it’s more important than ever to build a strong brand that articulates your message clearly and consistently, stands out against the noise, and develops relevance with the people that matter. This makes managing your brand a key component to gaining cut-through and ultimately business success.

Dan Ratner

managing director, Uberbrand

Disrupting marketing as we know it

Call it digital disruption or the fourth industrial revolution, our rapidly evolving environment is affecting consumer perceptions, purchase behaviours and the way they consume information and products.

Jean-Luc Ambrosi

Author, marketer

Very well said “With today’s consumers more demanding of the brands and merchants they shop, it’s imperative for merchants to not just co...

Masterarts

CMO's top 10 martech stories for this week - 29 September

Read more

Very interesting article which touches on the importance of a feedback loop fuelled by customer and market insights. Ideally this scenari...

Andrew Reid

Building customer insights in the data and digital age

Read more

Very very good piece- very novel and innovative and very possibly- effective - way to look at one's communication headlines!

Patrick Dsouza

Should your disclaimer become your headline? - Brand science - CMO Australia

Read more

Excellent post Rob, Mobile app users are growing day by day. Everyday lots of apps are launched in the market but not every app retains t...

Marcus Miller

Why app engagement must be personalised - Mobile strategy - CMO Australia

Read more

very informative blog. I really like the information given in this blog.http://gng.com.au/

Gajanand Choudhary

The evolving role of the CMO - The CMO view - CMO Australia

Read more

Latest Podcast

More podcasts

Sign in