Personalization is the Key to Enhancing Customer Experience

This is the second blog post in a nine post series for IBM focused on the intersection of customer experience and technology, data and analytics. This post covers the First “R” of relationship and the concept of personalization.

Personalization is a popular term in business today. Before we go any further, we’d like to point out the irony. Business has always been personal. In the old world where individual artisans or merchants owned their own shops, they knew each and every customer who walked through the doors. Recommendations and personal touches were commonplace. Somewhere along the road to mass marketing…the concept was lost.

Today, we use the word personalization to describe our desire to go back to doing business on a personal level, but often forget it’s not about segments or cohorts. To personalize is to design or produce something to meet someone’s individual requirements. The key is the individual.

In our current landscape, focusing on the individual can be almost impossible for companies. Hindered by legacy technology and distributed workforces, personalization is difficult. But it’s the companies who overtake these barriers who tend to see impressive results.

Connecting the Dots

To accurately understand your customers, you must bridge the gap between online history and offline behavior. You need a view into the behaviors of your customer that goes beyond demographics and purchase history. This requires the ability to collect and present thorough and accurate information about individual customer interactions…and connect the customer context dots. The final step is delivering the data and insight – on demand and in context – to drive specific actions.

IBM Case Study: Fresh Direct

Founded in 2002 and employing more than 1,000 people, FreshDirect is one of the leading online grocers in the United States. With more than 600,000 customers in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut, the company has fulfilled 12 million orders since its inception.

The challenge: To drive sales and nurture loyalty, FreshDirect wanted to make its marketing communications more relevant and engaging – but first, the organization needed a better way to segment its customers.

The solution: FreshDirect implemented IBM solutions, enabling it to identify customer preferences on the digital channel and perform accurate customer segmentation.

The benefits: Today, FreshDirect reaches out with optimal promotions that are personalized for each customer, incentivizing incremental purchases and encouraging repeat business.

Read the full FreshDirect case study here.

Blue Goldfish Case Study: Erste Bank

Erste Bank is headquartered in Vienna, Austria. The bank uses analytics to determine the next best action for customers and analyze existing data that can recommend next best actions to customers via outbound and inbound touch-points.

Next best action analytics is driving impressive results for the bank. Erste makes these personalized offers through its call centers and online channels. They report a 95% success rate in determining the next best product for a customer using their data-driven approach. Getting this offer right is moving the needle for Erste as purchases for the next best product are up to 16 times above the average sale ratio.

Takeaway: The possibilities for enhanced customer experience are endless when you combine big data and little data into personalized offers.

Today’s Lagniappe (a little something extra thrown in for good measure) – here’s a video from IBM’s Amplify, an Ignite talk on infosense:

Stan Phelps is a popular keynote speaker and workshop facilitator. He believes that brands must focus on meaningful differentiation to win the hearts of both employees and customers. Driven by client objectives and inspired by bold vision, Stan works with clients to create programs, keynotes, and workshops that are memorable and on brand, inspiring businesses to become talkable by design. The result: programs that win BIG.

Contact Stan at stan@purplegoldfish.com or call +1.919.360.4702

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

One thought on “Personalization is the Key to Enhancing Customer Experience

  1. I agree, personalisation is needed to address individual needs, accurate segmentations allows you to look deeper than just trends. It allows you to examine individual interests and establishes one-to-one customer relationships.

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