Simply implementing the proper technology wouldn’t change anything for the better. To really see progress, corporate culture had to adapt to the new technological landscape and new ways of collaborating. Given that many marketers had never worked with digital marketing tools, they were initially somewhat hesitant. Adopting new technology requires acceptance.
Sunstar Europe created a joint venture approach between communications and marketing technology to “co-lead, together, by doing”: joint business-technology presentations, join business-technology labs, and a business-technology visit to the EMEA Adobe Summit in 2019, which helped EMEA marketers see that their new digital marketing tools would not only create new possibilities but – regarding Adobe solutions – be intuitive and easy to use. And with COVID-19 entering the scene, empowered marketers mattered most.
“The year 2020 was a big challenge for all of us; first and foremost, of course, socially and in terms of health. But for us, 2020 was also, admittedly, a total boost,” Hungerford tells us. “Social distancing and lockdowns made it abundantly clear that digital business is vital to the company’s success.”
So, it's fitting that Adobe Campaign launched in early 2020. Throughout the year, personalized email campaigns and newsletters enabled Sunstar to stay close to its customers by conveying time-relevant information on stock and delivery, as well as simply opening a new channel of communication to stay human and connected. It was an opportunity for digital marketers across EMEA to understand first-hand how effective email communication can be in building trust and loyalty. And even if trust itself cannot be expressed in figures, the number of newly won customers certainly can. Whereas Sunstar only had 1,700 GDPR-compliant subscribers at the beginning of the year, they turned the corner on 50,000 B2B contacts – a growth rate of 2,400 percent – by Q3. Not surprisingly, Sunstar had already exceeded its 2020 goals by the beginning of December. In the meantime, digital marketing tools have become an integral part of the company's strategy.