Big Data Analytics, The Key To Personalization

by CXOtoday News Desk    Feb 21, 2017


In the age of digital disruption and hardcore competition, personalization is the way to deliver a unique experience and consequently to stay afloat in the market. While brands and their leaders have realized that bit, they believe that personalization is hard. That’s because traditionally many brands do not have enough data to understand their customers at a personal level, let alone deliver a unique experience, as a result of which they lag behind in their personalization efforts. Analysts believe that Big data analytics can change the game. 

Big data to boost personalization

Analyst firm Gartner noted that advanced analytics will be key to customer service, but points out that adoption of big data analytics is currently limited to fewer than 10% of organizations. The challenge is that companies are still struggling with structured data and with deploying a useful analytics framework based on their customer relationship management (CRM) systems, as well as consolidating different internal and external data sources.

There are however exceptions like Amazon and Netflix that hyper-personalize (i.e. personalize to one single individual) and offer a truly unique experience to each customer. However, organizations need to be extremely responsive to cope with the volatility created by customers engaging via digital technologies. Being able to react in real time and make the customer feel individually valued is possible only through advanced analytics, believe Gartner researchers.

Big data offers the opportunity for interactions to be based on the personality of the customer, by understanding their attitudes and taking into account factors such as real-time location to help deliver personalization in a multi-channel service environment.

Brian Manusama, a research director at Gartner, said in an article, “Organizations that use big data for customer service will increase customer satisfaction by providing rich, analytical, personalized customer services. As a result, the organization can benefit from increased revenue through predictive analysis. Avoiding problems before they escalate is the most sensible path to reducing support costs and retaining customers.”

“Through analysis, brands can get a better understanding of the service issues customers are experiencing, and take action to avoid problems and resolve issues before customers are reaching out to customer service,” he said.

To fit or not to fit

Deloitte Consulting LLP principal Dave Hanley defines personalization as “unique messages and content delivered to specific customers at the right time, on the right platform, in the right sequence, and with the right context.”

In a recent Deloitte blog, he stated that just because personalized marketing is possible—and works wonderfully for some businesses—doesn’t mean it’s right for your organization. True personalization requires financial investments in analytics, implementation, and human resources that best serve your business.

Hanley sees personalized personalization as a continuum, moving from broad marketing at one end to one-to-one marketing on the other. Depending on the personalization desired, the CMO can execute a step-by-step process to help answer that question for a particular organization. He suggests you think of where your business best fits on the spectrum by considering which level of personalization is right for you, both now and in the future. Armed with knowledge about your resources, budget, and goals, you’ll be equipped to move toward the level of personalized marketing that meets your company’s current needs—and yields the greatest ROI. 

Be digital natives to win

However while every brand is aiming at digital transformation, a recent Frost and Sullivan study showed that CEOs in Asia in particular are challenged by intense complexity, uncertainty and transformation wherein the rising relevance of services-based business models, especially those pertaining to Personalization and customization is upsetting traditional products-based approaches.

Based on the survey results Frost & Sullivan Visionary Innovation Research Analyst Michal Kurowski identifies that majority of respondents rate big data analytics as the leading factor that could potentially transform their organizations.

“After revenue growth, ensuring customer satisfaction was the most important goal for organizations. Yet, more than half of them felt that their product/service innovation performance was not in line with evolving customer demands,” noted Kurowski. “Almost 49 percent of CEOs stated that they would rely on strategic partnerships to drive their organization’s growth in the next three years. 

Because the digital-native enterprises can give their customers a much more personalized experience, they will win the long-term engagement with their customers. This not only enables them to acquire customers faster, but also retain them much more effectively — vital factors in an increasingly competitive market for people’s limited attention.