We as marketers are very lucky to be witnessing a time of great development and exciting change in our industry. For years now, we have been discussing the notion of one-to-one marketing, but without the real technologies and capabilities to fully act on this big idea. Today, the marketing industry has passed the tipping point. Both the marketing platforms and technologies required to make business personal not only exist but are fully integrated and readily available at multiple price points, making one-to-one marketing possible for virtually every organization. In addition, consumer data is also now readily available and the cost of storing this data, as well as the extraction capabilities, has also been greatly reduced. Consumers are also more open to sharing their data in return for meaningful and relevant communications and rewards. All of the reasons we couldn’t build one-to-one relationships with customers’ in the past have gone away.

The future of marketing is in an exciting place, one where marketers can build ‘human’ relationships between their brands and consumers because robust expertise and insights can now be paired with multi-channel digital tools that enable brands to know each consumer so well that they can anticipate his or her next move and provide value each step of the way to better shape their customer experience along the journey.

Many brands are already attempting to give consumers more personalized experiences, with or without the use of technology, in order to engender loyalty and repeat engagement. For example, we have recently seen the rise of a “personalized” Coca-Cola bottle or the Starbucks cup with your name on it. Many of our own clients rely on us to use the power of insights, garnered from their loyalty program data, to help further their customer relationships and drive increased engagement with the brand. As Forrester notes based on their research on the market need for loyalty, “…data shows that improving customer loyalty is likely to be a top marketing priority for 80% of decision-makers at large organizations in the next 12 months… with more than a quarter who are planning to expand or upgrade their solutions.” So while loyalty is top of mind for many of these organizations, they also struggle with finding a holistic solution that pairs the right strategy and program design with enabling services and technology that will drive business results both in the short and long run.

Aimia has successfully helped many companies around the world with this problem, and we have implemented strategies and solutions using these innovative new technologies and tools to make business more personal for their customers. The company recently received top marks from Forrester Research, Inc. The independent research company recognized Aimia as a leader in customer loyalty solutions in two of its latest reports: “The Forrester Wave™: Customer Loyalty Solutions, Q1 2016 for large organizations”, and “The Forrester Wave™: Customer Loyalty Solutions, Q1 2016 for midsize organizations.”

The reports which were released on January 4th, cited Aimia as a ‘leader’ in the end-to-end loyalty solutions for both large and midsize organizations, and received high scores for purpose built global loyalty solutions, data management, analytics support, and demonstrated service experience. Separately, the report also notes that “Clients praise Aimia’s account management.” It is also important to point out that Aimia was the only provider to have solutions in both the Large and Midsize Organization Forrester Wave assessments. This shows our breadth of offering and our commitment to tailoring the solution to best meet the client need.

We live in an era that is short-term oriented, noisy, and fast-moving for both consumers and for marketers. Marketers that can authentically humanize their interactions with customers can rise above the noise. Knowing what customer data matters most to personalizing your brand’s interactions with customers is a differentiator – and we’re pleased to be recognized by Forrester as a leader, especially in this in this particular area.

Mike Poyser is Aimia‘s VP of Analytics for Canada.

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