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MARKETING RESOLUTIONS FOR 2016

by Mario Natarelli and Rina Plapler

Following our extensive study examining the emotional bonds between brands and 6,000 consumers, we asked close to 150 senior marketers to give us their perspectives. Those results have created our Marketing Resolutions for 2016, four ambitious goals that can transform your brand.

1. Embrace the Opportunity

Make this year the time to establish real bonds between your customers and your brand. While almost 75 percent of marketers interviewed rated their company’s performance as very good or good, in terms of creating brand intimacy with customers, our global research suggests that only about a third of consumers feel they have an intimate connection with the brand. This suggests marketers may have overstated their brands’ success or underestimated the challenges in creating ultimate brand relationships.

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Only 1/3 of consumers feel they have an intimate connection with a brand, yet marketers surveyed think that more than 3/4 of their customers are intimate with their brand.


2. Fight the Good Fight

Marketers surveyed lamented that the main reason they aren’t building stronger bonds with customers is because of internal resistance. Fight the data-driven mindset that pervades the C-suite. Marketing’s strength is its ability to combine rigor with emotion, creating a unique blend of art and science. Arm yourself with facts about decision drivers. Boast about the performance that intimate brands deliver. Leverage the emotional currency of your brand to represent this powerful perspective.

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The #1 barrier marketers see to achieving Brand Intimacy is internal resistance.


3. Break the Silos

To deliver a compelling brand to customers means marketers need to effectively engage and cut across an organization. We know this is neither easy nor welcome, but it appears many agree. Improving the product offering is the #1 way marketers feel customer intimacy can be improved. This requires channeling the internal silos that make a product stronger. Domains of insights, engineering, and operations must be able to work with marketing to elevate beyond customer expectations. Creating Brand Intimacy is challenging and rare and, and as a result, it requires greater degrees of enhanced internal collaboration across disciplines.

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The #1 area of a company marketers feel directly can affect customer intimacy is improvements to the product. This typically involves a cohesive and integrated team approach.


4. The Human Element

Make your brand essential by striving for personalization, relevance, and anticipation. Marketers state that customer service is where they can most effectively build intimacy. They have also indicated that the majority of their customers associate their brands with the Brand Intimacy archetype of fulfillment—exceeding expectations and delivering superior service, quality, and efficacy. Focus on keeping your customers fulfilled and engaged with your brand by continuously delighting them.

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The #1 area where marketers feel they
can effectively build customer intimacy is with customer service.

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