How to Use Your Data to Deliver a First-Rate Customer Experience

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Click to learn more about author Arun Kumar.

Excellent customer experience (CX) is no longer a “nice-to-have” – it’s a must. Fortunately for marketers, brands have access to droves of data to drive their CX. They just need to know how to optimize it.

Today’s consumers are seeking a seamless and personalized CX. According to recent research from PwC, more than 70% of people say CX is a key factor in their purchasing decisions, and 67% of customers indicate their standards for CX are higher than ever. To understand what their customers really want, brands not only need access to data but also need to know what to look for and how to uncover actionable insights. 

Why You Need More from Your Data

A bad CX can ruin a customer’s relationship with a brand just as easily as a good one can improve it. The aforementioned research shows that nearly a third of consumers would switch to a competitor after just one bad experience with a brand. But truly great CX can improve customer loyalty and retention, amplify word-of-mouth marketing, and generate positive online reviews. In fact, 65% of consumers would become long-term customers of a brand that provides a quality CX throughout the entire buyer journey.

To provide best-in-class experiences, brands need access to first-party data that helps them understand customers’ sentiments, past history, desires, and behaviors. The good news is that the data is right in front of them. From customer product reviews to automated marketing data, companies can discover what their customers want – and how they act – at each step of the buyer journey. 

But data doesn’t magically arrange itself to yield actionable insights. While brands have access to more data than ever, this information is often disconnected and nearly impossible to manually draw insights from. Additionally, customer data platforms (CDPs) can house prolific volumes of data that can feel overwhelming and make it hard to find actionable insights.

To bridge the gap between data and insights, you need to level up technology and talent. And considering 80% of shoppers are more likely to purchase from a brand that offers them personalized experiences, you might want to reconsider your CX strategy.

3 Ways to Take Your Customer Data to the Next Level

A top-notch CX strategy is essential for meeting the demands of the modern consumer. With that in mind, let’s take a closer look at how you can use data to drive first-rate CX across the entire buyer journey.

1. Minimize assumptions with machine learning. Having access to massive amounts of data is a good thing. But manually sorting through customer data is labor-intensive and error-prone. That’s where machine learning (ML) comes into play. Integrating advanced, ML-driven solutions into your technology stack can help you analyze large data sets and create accurate predictive models based on customers’ past data. ML can help tame unruly CDPs by eliminating redundant and inconsistent data, allowing you to focus on the right information and make accurate decisions. And the more reliable your dataset is, the better you’ll be able to forecast.

2. Create a unified customer database. When you’re collecting customer data from disparate sources (i.e., different devices and channels) it can be difficult to paint a clear picture of who your customers are. With identity resolution, you can connect these identifying behaviors and actions of your customers to create a unified, omnichannel view of individual customer profiles. With data like past transactions and device identity in a single location, you can engage with customers in relevant and engaging ways unique to each person.

3. Collaborate with a team of experts. You need a team of data experts to fully embrace a data-driven CX approach. Why? Because you don’t just need data and actionable insights – you also need to know how to put those insights to use. With less than 2% of companies believing their current talent can adequately leverage marketing analytics, you may want to consider talent with the right data and analytics skills for today’s CX landscape. You should look for individuals with strong Data Management skills and the ability to collaborate in a fast-paced environment. These individuals will be able to provide advanced insights based on the data you already have.

In a world where you can lose a customer to a competitor with a click of a button or a tap on a screen, a data-driven CX strategy is a must. With the right digital tools, strategy, and team of experts, you can create relevant, personalized experiences for your customers. You probably already have a massive amount of customer data at your fingertips – now you just need to start using it to make your CX even better. 

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