IT giant Fujitsu had decided to standardize on a single marketing automation platform across its worldwide organization, its goal went beyond improving performance. This was an opportunity for them to optimize customer data and provide more consistent and personalized experiences across a diverse B2B customer base. With GDPR looming, it additionally provided essential controls that the marketing team discovered were lacking from its existing CRM platform.
The trouble for Fujitsu was that not all of the data that determined if an individual could be contacted for a specific purpose was held in the CRM systems. So the new Marketo system became the system of record for GDPR compliance for them. This means it can act almost like a “guardian angel” that is constantly watching for potential issues.
Two years ago Fujitsu decided that its disparate marketing landscape required a radical overhaul to prepare for the future. In the EMEA region, there were more than thirty country operations, each of which operated autonomously in terms of marketing technology, channels, and processes. With an increasingly globalized marketplace and GDPR fast approaching, a different approach was needed.
There were two main methods to this transformation. First of all, there was the data consolidation — migrating over a million customer contact records from more than thirty different sources. Secondly, there was a need to bring consistency to the customer experience, so that the brand would have the same look and feel at all geographies.
The implementation of Marketo became an important change agent for the Fujitsu, instead of simply bringing in a new technology tool. The new platform has come into effect just in time to meet rising expectations of personalization and transparency in B2B marketing. Research conducted by Marketo among European marketers and buyers has identified convergence in behavior between the B2B and B2C sectors, with B2B buyers acting much more like consumers in the way they approach purchases. This means that they have similar expectations around data protection, engagement, and ethics. Having the right data is crucial to maintaining engagement, but it’s equally important to manage that data in a way that respects the individual’s data rights.
Fujitsu has made a preference center in Marketo to support transparency in a two-way relationship with contacts and customers. The aim is to gather insights to understand customers better and tailor marketing and sales outreach to their interests and needs. Simultaneously, it gives customers control over that data, with the ability to change, update or remove it at will.
Marketo has empowered Fujitsu to introduce data capture methods across the web and social presences that gather consent in a GDPR compliant way. This is part of the new world in which Fujitsu, like all brands, has to up its game.
The impacts of GDPR is still evolving. A lot of the detail is still open to interpretation, with some countries taking a stricter line than others.
One perhaps unexpected and positive effect of GDPR has been improved alignment between marketing and sales. Previously, most organizations have experienced a disconnect between marketing operations, who have looked after the governance of their outreach, and sales operations looking after the operational side of CRM. Building a foundation for privacy and GDPR compliance in Marketo has encouraged a closer relationship between marketing and sales.
Fujitsu’s concept of making Marketo the system of record for data protection compliance seems a sensible choice to meet requirements that older systems are not equipped to accommodate.