At the speed of information: Data and personalised experience

21 Apr 2021

Even before 2020, companies have been trending towards more data-driven practices and offerings. And in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, digitization and data have grown to be essential tools across every industry. With all of this powerful information in their hands, companies are now in a race with one another to find the most helpful and personalised solutions for the modern consumer.

Data is at the heart of Data Driven Companies

As stated above, data is now an invaluable tool to almost every organisation. Used properly, it is the most powerful tool for companies to gain valuable insights and take informed actions on how to serve their consumer base best – essentially acting as the brain or central processing unit at the heart of the modern enterprise.

The pandemic has accelerated this growth, modifying consumer habits and removing barriers to “hot” issues such as teleworking or e-commerce in spaces that traditionally haven’t had such offerings. Today, after 6 months of restrictions and health protection measures, we are finally scratching the surface of this new frontier and what it means for the future of the worldwide marketplace. 

Strengthening digital presence

Companies have therefore focused on strengthening their digital presence, either through increasing e-commerce offerings or actively promoting digital engagement with the consumer. These channels have gone from complementing the physical environment to being a priority in the overall business context.

So what are companies looking for in this new frontier? Well, beyond generic needs (for example, general restructuring), there are three specific that are central to a company’s digital strategy:

  • Maintaining revenue levels and having digital channels to cover issues not addressed through physical interaction
  • Building and cultivating long-lasting relationships with consumers and audiences
  • Taking advantage of this unique relationship to gain insights that would be unavailable through physical interaction

Data as the source of personalised experiences

The key to digital channels is meeting and exceeding customers’ expectations so that they can still experience their journey with a company on their terms. Customers expect the following, for example: ‘When I enter my telecommunications provider’s portal, I want them to know who I am, I expect them to know that I have four mobile phone lines, a Premium TV package, or that I like to watch TV series.’

All this information (and more) makes the customer feel represented and truly cared for and actively invites them to engage on a meaningful level with the company and its offerings.

New customer profiling structure

That is the heart and power of data: to create customer context, and in so doing, personalize a customer’s experience with a company. This is the key to making sure customers come back for more and are more actively engaged. This starts the feedback loop process by generating more actionable insight, allowing the growth and improvement of future interactions and activations. 

Sounds like a relationship, right?

To summarize: knowledge, contextualisation and personalisation are the three elements to take into account. Until now, the most commonly used technique to achieve this was segmentation. However, the concept of segmentation is too broad to apply to digital channels. Keep in mind that a company determines 2 or 3 segments to qualify its customers (mostly related to customer spend), which is far too general to build genuine relationships.

Therefore, the proposal for organisations that want to stand out in the digital environment is to define a new customer profiling structure that celebrates and highlights individuality. Is it essential to know if a customer spends a lot of money on their data plan? Of course, it is. But, it is also important to complement that information by knowing what sports and teams they follow, how they feel about Game of Thrones Season 8, or if they’re a parent who watches educational channels for his children from 7 to 9 o’clock.

The technique of generating these additional demographics allows for a more accurate and granular grouping of customers. In this way, a customer may belong to a specific demographic but form part of several audiences, which in turn generates more personalised and contextualised content and engagement.

The secret lies in acceleration

In the context of permanent change, speed is clearly a differential value. Therefore, when an organisation considers optimising or transforming its digital channel, the time it takes for that implementation to become market-ready is highly valuable. That speed comes with experience, so companies must find technology partners that already have a proven and varied track record of developing these systems at scale. At VASS, for example, we have a library of more than 150 digital success stories.

Our “screens” available in the catalog of experiences allow us to speed up a digital initiative. Think of it as a plug-and-play system that will enable us to efficiently implement a more engaging, personalised, and contextualized experience for the customer based on previous relevant successes.

Álvaro Sánchez

VP International Unit at VASS

Senior Computer Science Engineer from the UAM in Madrid and research proficiency studies in Artificial Intelligence. He began his career at Banco Santander and Siemens Business Services. He joined VASS in 2001 where he led the Telco, Media and Technology market since 2013.

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