Virtual MarTech Summit: Sessions on Customer Experience, Brand Community, Gamification and More

March 3, 2022

The Virtual MarTech Summit (APAC) took place February 22-23, 2022. The event featured B2B and B2C tracks, with speakers from Unilever, Aon, Citibank, Dell, Cigna and Treasure Data. 

According to the event’s website, there were 1,000+ attendees, 40+ speakers and 16 sessions. Topics covered included Community Marketing, Gamification, Social Media, Influencer Marketing, CX, Customer Data Platform, UGC, Personalisation, Precision Demand Marketing and Digital Acceleration.

In this post, I’ll summarize the sessions I attended.

Using data to optimize the customer experience

The first session I attended was titled “How we Employed Customer Data to Optimise Their Experience.” It featured the following panel:

  • Pankaj Agarwal Director, Center of Competency Services, Dell
  • Jimmy Hilvert-Bruce, Strategist, Australian Broadcast Corporation
  • Benjamin Poole, Head of Singapore Office, 55

The panel started by discussing Customer Data Platforms (CDP). A CDP provides companies with a single view of customers. It provides audience segmentation, which can power smarter personalization. Using a CDP can provide a differentiated customer experience.

The panel noted that the proper deployment of a CDP involves four steps:

  1. Isolate
  2. Cleanse
  3. Check usage
  4. Integrate

Dell used a CDP to create a “Support Assist” offering to minimize downtime for its customers. Data is captured across servers to identify failure alerts and proactively initiate troubleshooting and triage. 

The panel then covered the broader topic of data management. The key attributes for data management are the 4 P’s: plan, platform, people and process.

Challenges related to data management include data cleanliness (i.e., keeping data clean, correct and updated), integration (i.e., how data is managed and how customers interact with it) and organizational designs.

Fostering a brand community for customer engagement

Next, I attended a fireside chat titled “Fostering a Brand Community for Ongoing Customer Engagement and Making Customer-Driven Decisions.” It featured these speakers:

  • Krithirun Ariyamahapong, Head of Brand & Marketing Communication, Cigna
  • Jason Huan, Chief Marketing Officer, Endowus

Krithirun and Jason started by discussing brand engagement. They noted that because it costs more to acquire new customers than keep existing ones, brands should focus on nurturing customers and increasing their lifetime value. A brand community can help keep customers engaged, turning some of them into brand advocates.

Before launching a community, a brand needs to:

  • Get buy-in from management and employees
  • Understand the target audience
  • Determine processes for community management
  • Have a strategy that includes frequency of engagement

Enhancing customer retention with gamification

My next session was a fireside chat titled “Enhancing Customer Retention and Loyalty through Interactivity and Gamification.” The chat featured:

  • Adam W. Cowlishaw, Head of Marketing and Connected Commerce, Johnson & Jonson
  • Bernard Chong, Marketing Director, Foodpanda

Adam and Bernard discussed how to engage customers and motivate them to want to come back, as well as the effectiveness of gamified techniques in marketing strategy across channels. 

They noted that gamification has become an important element of customer engagement and retention. It creates opportunities for customers to experience more of a brand’s products and services. Gamification also enables some customers to become brand advocates.

How MarTech transformed B2B marketing

I attended a panel discussion titled “How MarTech Transformed B2B Marketing to be Customer-Centric and Enhance Client Experience.” The panelists:

  • Angelyn Varkey, Marketing Director, Asia Pacific, Aon
  • Sophia Ong, Director of Branding & Marketing Communications, ERM
  • Mark Drexelius, Head of IT, AAA (Asia, Australasia & Africa) Region, Imperial Brands
  • Smita Kumar, Digital Capabilities and Marketing Execution Leader, Safety and Industrial Business, 3M

The panel discussed challenges and opportunities in B2B Marketing when implementing MarTech, as well as strategies that improve client experience and achieve customer-centricity.

In the “new normal” that we live in, brands need to rethink how they engage with customers. Gamification can work well with a B2B audience if there’s a clear end goal. Brands can use gamification to incent positive behavior, such as attending sessions or downloading content.

The panel mentioned that analytics and AI can help map the customer journey, helping brands understand how customers proceed on the path to purchase. Analytics and AI can also elevate brand storytelling and identify the types of content that resonate best with customers.

Collecting and analyzing customer data

The final session I attended was a panel discussion titled “How we Designed Business Operations to Collect and Analyse Customer Data & Insights.” The panelists:

  • Sarah Mathews, Head of Media Partnerships, APAC, Tripadvisor
  • Sahaj Khunteta, Head of Marketing Analytics, Asia Pacific and Japan, Intel
  • Shailendra Singh, Vice President, Global Sales & Marketing Head, Aditya Birla Chemicals

The panel discussed how to innovate sales and marketing operations to gather account data and understand customer behaviors and how customer analytics can generate productive account interaction and relationships.

The panel discussed considerations around the analysis of internal vs. external data. They noted that in B2B, the primary data collection points are:

  • Order management
  • Future products and invoicing
  • Quality management system

Wrapping up

I enjoyed the two-day Virtual MarTech Summit. The topics were interesting and the speakers and panelists were great. I’m looking forward to attending similar virtual events later this year.