When it comes to marketing, many CMOs like to think about shouting from the roof tops – telling their story far and wide. But in a media landscape dominated by digital platforms and social networks, it’s no longer about having the loudest voice. It’s about enabling the most meaningful, personal and powerful connections.

Successful marketers recognize that in the omni-channel, always-on, ever-connected world, the consumer journey has changed forever.

The new consumer path effectively and efficiently brings consumers from click to close. While it’s critical to reach consumers in a crowded mediascape and then inform them of the brand value proposition, where the rubber meets the road is when you can engage with your customer.

Branded content reaches customers, drives awareness and enhances perceptions. Behavioral targeting reaches buyers and sellers at the intersection of search and selection. Winning these “micro moments” at the instant consumers are in search of information they want is the new goal.

But when it comes to engaging customers, marketers are moving in a whole new direction. While traditional marketing focuses on brand awareness, the new metric is about capturing attention and driving engagement. That’s why personalized delivery of contextually relevant content is key to customer engagement.

The best way to create engagement with your customers is to understand intimately what they want and why. When it comes to marketing, adopting an “agile development” mindset is helpful.  Agile development, best known in technology development, is the practice of bringing the user into the process of building the product. A consumer-centric approach to the agile mindset says that the customer has a voice that informs and shapes the product, the process and the path.

Today’s consumers starts the journey on their phone to answer the question “I want to do, go or buy,” with the world literally in the palm of their hand. But while they start the journey on their mobile device, they want to have a seamless experience across all platforms and channels including face to face.  For that reason, successful marketers need to connect online behaviors with a personalized offline experience.

It is in the delivery of service that another marketing imperative comes to light. The customer experience must be translated across all segments of your company: from sales and marketing, to service and operations, everyone must have a single view of the customer.

Companies that create this seamless delivery of hybrid service throughout every level of the organization not only demonstrate a keen understanding of today’s connected consumer, they also drive customer engagement and build long-term brand loyalty.