The sales process is a relationship that needs the commitment to create a lifelong bond. CRM tools have successfully helped B2B sales representatives nurture leads. In retail, our focus is centered around creating loyalty with the consumer. Email subscriptions are what comes to mind when you talk about CRM in B2C companies, but how many of these emails are left unread in your inbox or deleted?

The sales process is a journey, Matt Di Paola, Managing Director of SID LEE explains, “It’s about co-creating with those customers, not just talking at them with sales messages.  It’s about data as an input for better insights, not data as an output for reporting.  Brands who are thinking this way, are the ones who are winning today.”

In today’s world of marketing, to develop a devoted customer base, you need to reach your consumers the way THEY want to be communicated with and loyalty with Millennials is often difficult to accomplish. Unlike their parents, who buy the same brand of laundry detergent they’ve been buying for 20 years. Millennials are being flooded with different brands and products through Instagram, Facebook, Vine, and YOUR email blasts. “We’re in a world where customers have more control and higher expectations than ever before and we need to use technology to reduce friction and make interactions easier, no matter where, when or how the customer wants to interact with us.  The consumer isn’t in our sales funnel.  We are in their journey. “says Matt.

Email blasts CAN still work great, but how do we ensure they get opened?

You make it personal.

I’m not talking about adding their name at the top at the email, I’m talking about the subject line reading “Heyyy Riley! We haven’t seen you in the store in 29 days and we are starting to miss you!” How do we know that Riley hasn’t been in your store for 29 days? Because your store’s WiFi told you.

WiFi is one of the most underutilized marketing channels out there. The fact that you can use established, traditional infrastructure to identify when a consumer has walked into a store – and actually trigger a real time message to their mobile device – is something that all retailers should be using, but only few are today. That is the real opportunity.” says Ryan Freeman, Senior Director at Turnstyle Solutions.

It’s time get personal with your customers and communicate with them the way they want, or your marketing efforts will be swallowed up with the thousands of advertisements they see daily.