Let's see if you’ve heard what every woman dreams...apart from being able to eat whatever she wants without getting fat.
I’ll give you a clue. “Veni, Vidi, Visa”.
To be able shop till she drops without ever feeling guilty.
Television has played its part in giving shopping such an exciting allure. From Breakfast at Tiffany’s to Sex and the City, the list of fashion victims is a long one.
In sunglasses and stilettos, roaming the streets of Manhattan, immersed in a different world, glittering and glamorous, filled with bright lights, fine food, film premières, cocktails and parties, not to mention row upon row of shops in which to wave one’s credit card.
Until the internet came along.
A study revealed that 93% of shoppers go online before they go out to the shops. Our old favorite, Carrie Bradshaw, became a 2.0 customer: she researched products and suppliers online, looked for feedback on social media, read review sites and preferred email and WhatsApp to phone calls.
Unlike before, we now have access to an endless supply of information about the customer’s journey and if said information is then analyzed, it can help us to understand consumers.
Tired of sales spreadsheets and databases which are not always integrated, organizations are now moving to CRM (Customer Relationship Management) solutions which collect information on customers from a variety of sources to generate a single customer view of every individual the business has interacted or is currently interacting with.
The real value of CRM
The 2018 CRM Observatory found a disturbing trend: the real value of CRM, the customer insights that data can give us, are not being fully exploited.
The study showed that only 17% knew their customers well. Business for these organizations was slow because, as the study found, they lacked a data culture and understanding of their customers. Forbes confirmed this finding - less than 0.5% of all customer behavior data available is analyzed and used.
Advanced analytical techniques based on Artificial Intelligence are needed to take full advantage of all this wasted data.
The automatic learning that drives AI engines is underpinned by algorithms:
- Machine Learning, which means the ability of machines to learn by themselves
- Deep learning, namely algorithms which are based on hierarchical networks capable of performing predictive analysis using various combinations of parameters.
AI is a good pupil, it never stops learning: in fact, it can now extract results and make predictions based on data collected.
This process has been enabled by the intersection of three key events:
- the web, which has given us easy access to a virtually infinite amount of data;
- the cloud, which has brought guaranteed calculation power;
- AI, which provides more intelligent data models. With AI, we can break information down in a way we never could before.
Likewise, AI makes data intelligent; in other words, it presents it in a way that is useful to decision-making.
CRM and AI - a love story
Where does CRM fit in? CRM is not just knowing what customers are buying, it is understanding their entire history. AI can prosper in a world of unlimited, uncontaminated data.
AI works in three ways:
- It captures real-time data.
- It learns through algorithms, NLP, ML, Predictive Analysis.
- It enables us to connect to consumers in ways that are new and closer to their needs.
During their journeys as buyers, users tell us a lot about themselves, they reveal their passions and interests, and their wishes and expectations regarding the brands they come into contact with.
The real challenge in today's world is to have dynamic CRM: businesses have to keep pace with their constantly evolving customers and AI is a prime enabler in this game.
When we talk about AI, we are referring in particular to Content Intelligence (CI) which can analyze and interpret people's actions online and inform Marketing&Sales teams about the themes attracting the most interest along the buyer’s journey.
It then becomes much easier to increase engagement with personalized CTAs, based on viewed content.
Do you know what I like?
At the CRM level, this means having more CRM users about whose interests you know something specific.
AI-powered CRM systems gradually learn more about customer preferences and models and they will be able to recommend the right content to the right person at the right time.