Data isn’t what it used to be.
Before the dawn of digital transformation, business data was the result of a process – like a simple sales receipt, for example. But with new abilities to store, analyze and segment data, it is now a powerful tool that can offer valuable and interesting new insights into business trends and customer behavior.
A key component of a useful data strategy is a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) such as Microsoft Dynamics 365, a system which organizes and automates data flow so that the right information is available to the right person, anytime. And a good CRM boosts the customer experience, leading to customer retention and a substantial competitive edge.
Tracking and Analyzing Data
Sales are a cornerstone of an effective data strategy that leverages CRM. Let’s say you run an online shoe store, with a stylish yet affordable product line that is targeted to adults of all ages. With digital tracking and analysis, you can get behind the scenes to see what is really going on – where sales peak, which customers respond to which promotional offers, etc.
For instance, you have noticed more customers are making purchases on Fridays, when the work week winds down, and a weekend-shopping frame of mind starts to kick in. To leverage that trend, you decide to run a special pre-weekend promotion for 12 hours, from noon ’til midnight, called Fun Fridays: buy one pair, get half off the second. With a good CRM in place, you can segment the customers who participate in the Friday sale, and send them digital coupons for sneak peek specials, such as pre-holiday sales.
Enriching the Customer Experience
The “C” in CRM stands for customers – your focal point as a business owner. Whether you use chatbots or humans for customer service, a data strategy leverages the power of CRM to provide the most personalized service possible. Customers are increasingly used to instant responses, especially in the realms of insurance and retail. The days of being placed on hold are rapidly fading. A modern customer service rep will know who the customer is right away, including their history and preferences. This information works two ways; it immediately makes the customer feel like they are getting personalized service, and it also provides you with important purchasing information. For example, if a customer enters a strange purchasing pattern, it could be a red flag for fraud that previously would have passed unnoticed.
Analyzing regular returns could also be a cost-saver. If a large number of customers are returning shoes based on the color not matching the online photo, you might want to re-adjust your online shop lighting preferences so that the actual shoe color is better represented.
Data strategy extends to social media. By looking at competitors’ postings and offerings, you can better monitor what is out there to ensure you are meeting or beating promotions like free shipping and rewards programs.
Generating Personalized Documents and other Customer Communications
Once a two-dimensional commodity, data has evolved into a powerful multi-faceted business tool. Putting a strategy in place to gain insights is the smartest thing you can do in a digital workplace.
Organizations that leverage their customer data to communicate one-on-one, via multiple channels, will support a positive customer experience, which in turn leads to better loyalty and retention.
Industries like insurance, financial services and retail are increasing the value of each touch-point by combining rich CRM customer data with a document generation solution like Xpertdoc to create highly personalized and contextual documents such as NDAs, proposals, quotes, and other correspondence – which may contain reusable content, legal clauses, Service Level Agreements (SLA), pricing, descriptions of products or services, and more.
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