With the wealth of technology available to marketers’ measurement has become easier and yet more complex. Everyone talks about the importance of big data and yet many people and organizations by extension are still confused. Sure businesses collect and store data, but many people will tell you, they still don’t know how to use the data effectively.
So where do marketers begin?
It’s always a good idea to start with your customers. If you understand your customers, then you can build marketing strategies that target their specific needs which in turn will increase sales. A customer relationship management system can be a powerful resource. By capturing data such as spending patterns, location, age, gender, customers’ product likes and dislikes a business can build a detailed picture which will enable the marketer to segment the market successfully. For many companies, leveraging big data is the hot ticket to product development. However, it should be noted that there are other uses of managing big data successfully such as improving customer service. In the past, I would have been ticked off if I reached out to a company and had to repeat myself or answer the same mundane set of questions. Fortunately, companies that use big data to improve customer service can solve a customer’s problem quickly and efficiently if they have the right information in front of them, resulting in fewer questions and time saving.
Using data to improve customer relationships is especially important when customers have more channels than ever to connect with brands. The bottom line is that companies who equip their employees with tools that provide in-depth customer data stand apart because they provide great service which only improves with each interaction.
As mentioned earlier, everyone knows that analytics are only as good as the data they are built upon, but organizational roadblocks and technology limitations have left many companies struggling to feed their analytics with quality data. As a result, their analytics are often misleading, incomplete or inaccessible.
So here are a few suggestions on how companies can use big data strategies to gain insights from customer interaction, improve customer loyalty and gain competitive advantage: –
Stay objective and allow the data to provide the insight (Don’t assume you know what your customers’ needs and wants are).
1. Capture everything that can influence the customer’s behavior and experience.
2. Focus on quality of data rather than quantity.
3. Ensure technology is adaptable i.e. able to adjust easily to meet continuously changing requirements.
4. Evaluate – review process and determine what’s working from what’s failing. It could be opening an email, or purchasing a product, but conversions are real! Look at incremental changes in conversion rates over time. This is more likely to indicate whether the marketing strategy or campaign is working.
Big data analytics help organizations to identify new opportunities, to develop more efficient operations through faster decision making which in turn lead to happier customers. Whatever data you collect, the trick is to do it all the time, and act on it immediately. Remember today’s data can be obsolete given the pace of technology and customer’s demands.