Customer Analytics 101 for Senior Business

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Customer Analytics 101 for Senior Business
 PersPectives : AnAlytics
Analytics 101
for Senior
Five best practices for developing an
enterprisewide culture that brings
customer insights to action. By Mike McGuirk
Customer analytics now holds an immovable seat at
the decision-making table, as senior leaders leverage the
resulting insight across many facets of their modern business. Though senior leaders may not perform the data
analysis themselves, they’re responsible for integrating
and driving the adoption of enterprisewide best practices
that emphasize analytics’ importance to the underlying
culture of the entire organization.
Thankfully, more and more incoming senior executives
and C-suite leaders are aware of the benefits of customer
analytics and have far greater expectations for the implementation of best practices, as such tactics were far
more pervasive in their previous roles than those of their
predecessors. While prior leaders were more familiar with
traditional data collection methods, a growing number of
modern executives are better equipped with cutting edge
analytical knowledge. This puts them in an ideal position
to garner employee support and develop the organizational philosophy necessary to bring customer insight to
But, no matter their level of expertise and experience,
leaders must establish a cross-functional blueprint that
outlines where and how the company must go about
incorporating customer analytics. By highlighting the
responsibilities and benefits at stake, senior executives
carry the ability to empower their entire workforce with
the knowledge and support critical to maintain continued
success. The following best practices extend to all corners
of the business, enabling C-suite strategists and decision
makers to ensure customer analytics always support the
fundamental building blocks of growth and prosperity:
Customer Analytics 101 for
voLume 6 iSSue 4 Senior Business Leaders
1. Culture:
Build a customer-oriented
corporate philosophy
Businesses that create customer-oriented
cultures help drive superior customer experiences, which
ultimately lead to significant uplifts in revenue. In fact,
results from Forrester’s most recent Technographics
Customer Experience Survey indicate that wireless service
Reprinted from Customer Strategist, Volume 6 Issue 4. ©2014 TeleTech Holdings, Inc. All rights protected and reserved.
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 PersPectives : AnAlytics
providers and airlines can generate more than $1 billion in
annual revenue through better customer experiences. It
is customer analytics that helps companies maintain their
pulse on the voice of the customer. Consumer insights,
trends, and associated business action plans must be shared
throughout the company at regular intervals to root this
customer orientation into employees’ value systems.
In order to turn this dream into reality, senior leaders
must commit to enterprisewide voice-of-the-customer
(VoC) data collection and the ongoing analysis of this
customer data. Leaders must start by ensuring that VoC
information gets collected and captured at each stage of
the customer journey. Savvy businesses are capturing VoC
data from an ever-expanding list of solicited and unsolicited customer feedback sources, with many leveraging
the latest speech and text analytics solutions to make the
most of their continued efforts. However, with so much
data flowing into the organization, many lose sight of
how to bring insights to action. Senior leaders must share
pertinent VoC information with employees at all levels so
everyone involved can remain abreast of the latest developments and use the insights to deploy highly relevant
customer-centric actions across the company.
Senior Business Leaders
cs 101 for
Senior Business Leaders
2. Innovation:
Fuel the identification of customerfocused business initiatives
By adopting an analytically driven approach
to opportunity identification, senior leaders
greatly increase the likelihood that their selected business enhancement initiatives are grounded in observable
customer needs and qualified on expected business impact.
Thus, it’s critical to develop an overarching systematic
approach to quickly assess the multitude of preliminary
ideas and act upon the most qualified opportunities.
Leadership teams should carefully select an individual to
launch and manage this ongoing opportunity identification test center who is experienced in the application of
customer analytics. Leaders must also equip this person
with the resources—people, incentives, data and tools—
necessary for success. Ultimately, senior leaders must
seek to establish an approach that proactively enables the
company to sustain its analytical edge and stay ahead of
the competition.
Leaders should implement processes that include
multiple opportunity qualification stages that are each
supported by customer analytics and business case development. When properly executed, this process should
generate a steady flow of customer-focused business
enhancement opportunities that can be tested, refined,
and seamlessly integrated into regular business operations. Successful companies often look outside the four
walls of their company to create work teams that consist of
internal employees and external consultants in an effort to
blend resources so all best practices may be considered. By
doing so, work teams and senior leaders can then sit down
monthly or quarterly to explore and act upon the potential
enhancements that present the greatest opportunity for
growth, greater customer satisfaction, and success.
3. Strategy:
Stimulate customer-centric
strategy development
Organizations that fully embrace
the concept of personalized customer relationship and
development strategies have consistently been rewarded
with substantial uplift in key business performance metrics,
such as customer loyalty, customer value, and customer
satisfaction. Most senior leaders are well aware that not all
customers are the same, for each unique customer segment
has its own variety of needs and preferences. Therefore,
senior leaders must prepare their employees to interact with
customers on customers’ own terms.
Because today’s consumers decide when, where, and
how they interact, progressive businesses must use
customer analytics to inform and deliver personalized
treatment across all touchpoints. Every business should
utilize customer segmentation and customer lifecycle
solutions as the primary organizing framework to develop
personalized customer development and interaction
strategies. However, leaders must insist that strategies
are developed and executed at the customer segment
level to fully realize the business impact and reinforce the
customer-oriented culture of the business. One wireless
carrier completely embraced this need for customercentric strategy development, with senior leaders’
excitement permeating the entire enterprise. Not only
did this company use its new segmentation framework
to begin establishing tailored customer strategies, but
it also reconfigured the organization to create customer
segment managers who are now accountable for the
development and growth of unique customer groups.
volume 6 issue 4
Reprinted from Customer Strategist, Volume 6 Issue 4. ©2014 TeleTech Holdings, Inc. All rights protected and reserved.
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Customer Analytics 101 for
Senior Business Leaders
4. Operations:
Facilitate superior customer
motivate employees to keep the customer top of mind
in all business decisions, senior leaders must establish
core customer metrics and clearly articulate how these
measures will impact business performance. These
customer metrics should have strong, well-established
linkages to critical business KPIs, such as market share,
profitability, loyalty, and product sales. Companies should
also utilize multivariate modeling techniques to isolate
the customer behaviors that have the greatest influence
on business KPIs. Examples of core customer metrics
are customer engagement levels, channel usage levels,
product/service usage levels, and customer satisfaction
levels at varied points in the customer lifecycle.
Once the core customer metrics have been defined,
senior leaders must then help socialize the importance
of these new measures and require that these metrics
become fully integrated into all facets of business planning and performance measurement. Many companies
build internal dashboards that regularly highlight top
customer metrics, making this information universally
available to all employees within the organization so they
may begin to link these metrics with business KPIs. Others
have implemented highly interactive reporting platforms that allow business stakeholders to track customer
metrics and automatically forecast business performance
within their units. These stakeholders can track customer
metrics and simulate the impact customer behavior has
on critical business KPIs, thereby serving as an invaluable
source for business planning and strategy development.
Companies that deliver superior
customer experiences, especially during key moments
of truth, are much more likely to benefit from reduced
customer defection, higher customer advocacy, and
incremental brand spending. Over the last several
years, analytics solutions have evolved, putting more
emphasis on using customer insights in real-time production environments. Also known as inline analytics, this
technology-enabled approach allows teams to mine and
take advantage of massive Big Data assets that will help
the business and its employees make smarter decisions
during key customer interactions. Successful execution
requires commitment from senior leaders as they invest
in the people and technology needed to bring this goal
to fruition.
Once said solutions and strategies are in place, leadership teams should use analytics to evaluate and identify
the essential customer touchpoints that would benefit
most from highly personalized customer treatment.
Leaders can then make targeted pilot investments in technology-enabled analytics and measure the business impact
before committing to a formal, enterprisewide rollout.
Such methods are particularly valuable at determining the
best engagement strategy to deploy to resolve customer
issues and stem customer defection. Many contact centers
now employ such tactics, as they work to streamline their
real-time efforts. While some are focused on enabling
more intelligent inbound routing of calls, others wish to
leverage inline analytics to provide sales associates and
support agents with the real-time actionable insights
that can dramatically improve the chances of closing the
sale or resolving the customer’s issue upon first contact.
Inevitably, this approach improves sales, lowers operating
costs, and creates satisfying customer experiences.
Senior Business Leaders
Today’s customer-centric business leaders must possess
both strategic and critical thinking skills to be successful
in their roles. Customer analytics has the potential to be a
primary catalyst to drive innovation and customer strategy
development, as well as challenge conventional wisdom.
However, for this to happen senior leaders must cultivate
an organizational philosophy that values customer intelligence and motivates employees to bring all relevant
information to action. Full corporate adoption of customer
analytics fuels smarter decisions, driving change that
enables brands across industries to march to the beat of
the consumer trends at the heart of their business. 
5. Business performance:
Establish customer-focused
metrics and measurement
Companies that sustain their pulse
on well-defined, customer-oriented
metrics and understand the relationship between customer
behaviors and business performance can quickly react
to identified risks or opportunities in the business. To
VOLUME 6 ISSUE 4 Mike McGuirk is senior vice president of consulting services at
Reprinted from Customer Strategist, Volume 6 Issue 4. ©2014 TeleTech Holdings, Inc. All rights protected and reserved.
www.customerstrategistjournal.com 3
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