Telcos, banks and retailers have been striving to for years to understand what their customers want, ostensibly to provide whatever it is to them. They have employed numerous methods over the years based on collecting customer-lined data and storing it in ever-growing databases. This data has been manipulated, filtered, optimized, sorted and even normalized primarily to get a grip on what customers are up to.
Businesses were hampered by the cost of hardware, software and processing power to do much more than segment customers into common interest groups and then target them using marketing tools like campaign management systems. The results were often “hit and miss” and sometimes achieve the exact opposite result they set out to get: increased sales.
Things have certainly changed in the last few years, and in today’s digital real-time world, there is a need for far more sophisticated analysis at a personal level, and in the context the customer is actually immersed in.
The advent of cloud computing, cheaper processing and data storage costs and the introduction of artificial intelligence and machine learning have revolutionized the way the data is utilized and how effectively it can be used to up sell the customer in real-time.
At this year’s TM Forum Live! Asia event in Singapore, Knowesis presented a compelling use case with Indosat on how contextual marketing is being achieved today. The firm demonstrated how Indosat is able to deliver highly targeted, personalized and relevant offers to its customers using Knowesis’ Sift product to transition from batch or even real-time segment-based marketing to an approach leveraging best practice next best offer analytical models and real-time contextual customer state data.
This means that each offer can be individually personalized at the time of presentment using the latest customer state data, and can include bundles of multiple products or bonuses. This maximizes success rates, makes the most accurate decisions, and ensures that every interaction on each channel is as effective as possible with real-time contact tracking, control groups, and an omnichannel contact policy framework.
Omnichannel being the operative word these days as customers move away from traditional voice calling and the subsequent stress on CRM system and staff to a multitude of online channels demanding real-time responses. The customer’s expectations have increased faster than the pace of innovation in some cases – a point that Knowesis director Nathan Rae made in hia presentation, highlighting the need for businesses to partner with technology providers that can keep ahead of the tech curve.
Today there is a need to deliver the sharpest, most relevant offers that drive customer engagement with real-time, continuous customer profiling and analytics, geofencing, A/B testing, next-best-offer analytics and automation, and pre-built analytical models.
Inbound channel requests from digital platforms are supported via a rich API set. For pushing outbound offers, the flexibility couldn’t be greater with either direct integration available for existing digital platforms for email, mobile apps, etc, or the option to connect to specialist partner platforms like Salesforce Marketing Cloud.
This is teamed with the ability to flexibly integrate and scale on demand with existing data sources, data warehouses, data lakes, and applications such as charging platforms, coupon management systems, loyalty point management systems, and customer interaction channels.
I caught up with Nathan at the event and recorded the following interview with him to get some more background.