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Lyndsay Wise

Hi and welcome to my blog! I look forward to bringing you weekly posts about what is happening in the world of BI, CDI and marketing performance management.

About the author >

Lyndsay is the President and Founder of WiseAnalytics, an independent analyst firm specializing in business intelligence, master data management and unstructured data. For more than seven years, she has assisted clients in business systems analysis, software selection and implementation of enterprise applications. Lyndsay conducts regular research studies, consults, writes articles and speaks about improving the value of business intelligence within organizations. She can be reached at lwise@wiseanalytics.com.

Editor's Note: More articles and resources are available in Lyndsay's BeyeNETWORK Expert Channel. Be sure to visit today!

The customer has always been and should be the focal point of the organization. In the past this took on the guise of CRM applications to manage transactions and customer touch points for support, service, etc. This expanded to Customer Experience Management to take the view of and access to the customer one step further. Customer Intelligence does the same thing, but through increased data visibility. Organizations strive to understand their customers better in an increasingly competitive world. Online access and a global economy have given consumers (both business and otherwise) the upper hand. A person or business no longer has to purchase goods due to proximity. They can buy products and services based on the value add of knowing they are getting the best value for their dollar – whether due to price competitiveness or better levels of service. The reality for organizations trying to compete is that the only way to distinguish oneself from the competition is to provide added value by making sure that customers are more than satisfied with the products and services they purchase.

For organizations struggling with how to actualize this goal of providing value add, the reality is that the answer exists within data that is already available. Some of this data includes:

  1. Competitor data – what is available in reviews and online about competitor products, customer satisfaction, and the like.
  2. Social media related data – identifying what people think and general perceptions, Facebook likes, Twitter rants, etc.
  3. Internal customer information within CRM, AR, AP, and other corporate applications – this includes household, account, transaction history, and other general customer information.
  4. Sales and marketing data to identify what is working at the product and product visibility level.
  5. Sentiment analysis to understand issues, retention, satisfaction, etc. This combines analytics with internal customer information.

All of this data consolidated provides the access point to Customer Intelligence. It is quite difficult to develop core competencies and to manage them without understanding the whole customer landscape and wider data points than those within the organization.

The bottom line: to transform the organization into one where brand recognition goes beyond a product towards providing the value add to make customers stay requires a holistic approach to analytics that takes into account internal, external, structured, and semi/un-structured data sources. This means looking at analytics differently and understanding how leveraging the right data for analytics can actually be translated into better relationships with customers and the ability to tie in data access with business value creation.

This post was written as part of the IBM for Midsize Business program, which provides midsize businesses with the tools, expertise and solutions they need to become engines of a smarter planet. I’ve been compensated to contribute to this program, but the opinions expressed in this post are my own and don’t necessarily represent IBM’s positions, strategies or opinions.

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Posted December 16, 2013 3:27 PM
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