Can success really be driven by analytics? As businesses transform digitally, it is essential that they be able to detect and respond quickly to (or even anticipate) market change. The insight required is multi-dimensional and can be expansive, based on a variety of external data sources. It includes competitive intelligence (e.g., financial services staying on top of new trends in fintech) and a deep understanding of existing and potential customers.
A large hospitality company seeking to both increase its direct connection with customers and improve its standing with the online booking sites has been investing heavily in analytics and hiring people with experience analyzing digital trends.
“We’re constantly looking at what customers want and how to incorporate that into hotel operations,” said the director of worldwide sales. This includes what their own customers say and do, and what competitors and partners are doing, as well as trends gleaned from social media. In the coming months, these insights will result in “a lot of little innovations” to improve the customer experience and increase loyalty. This is an ongoing process, requiring constant vigilance. “New data pops up” to provide new insight, he said. “The data we used last month is not what we’re going to use next month.”
Some industries, such as healthcare and pharma, face unique challenges when it comes to customer insight. Regulations limit the data they collect and how they can use it. But that needn’t stop them from using data to improve both patient outcomes and business results.
For example, a biotech company in Latin America was losing revenue from its hospital customers, which pay based on outcomes, when patients weren’t using their product as recommended. When they analyzed the data, they found that the product was being used as prescribed at the beginning of the month but was falling off as the month progressed. Further analysis revealed that for many patients, this was a cost issue. So the company created a risk-sharing arrangement with payers and got them to monitor patient compliance. The monitoring and reminders to patients resulted in more steady usage throughout the month, which led to better patient outcomes and a more reliable flow of income.
Companies that are fully digital don’t just ask customers what they want; they get a lot of their insight by analyzing customers’ behavior. “We look at what they’re doing with the product,” said a business development leader at a leading cloud company. “With their permission, we look at how they’re leveraging the tools, how they’re using the service we offer in ways that may not have been intended.” This leads to new services and enhancements.
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