The value of analytics and how it can transform customer service

By Stephen Pickett

With advanced technology such as cloud based customer services platforms growing at an exponential rate among businesses, public sector organisations and charities, more organisations are unlocking the potential of data analytics to determine trends, analyse business performance and transform the customer journey.

Using analytics to review customer behaviour and feedback is intrinsic to a good customer service strategy and can drive business performance if data is translated and measured effectively. A survey conducted by McKinsey Global Institute (MGI) estimated that retailers using analytics to steer their business direction could increase sales by more than 60 percent, as ultimately, customer feedback can drive changes in products, delivery of service and methods of engagement with customers.

There are numerous examples of companies that have benefitted from harnessing a data-driven culture. Take mobile services provider Ufone for example. The company, which is one of the largest wireless phone carriers in Pakistan, operates in a highly competitive industry and previously experienced a high customer churn rate. To improve consumer interaction and satisfaction levels, the business captured and logged data to create an impactful campaign that involved creating and individualizing targeted marketing offers, doubling customer response rates.

modern_communication_technology_flat_illustration_by_cursorch-d72tm9fAnalytics allows companies to take a deeper look into more meaningful success metrics such as first call resolutions and customer satisfaction, to see what is working and, more importantly, what isn’t.

When Icelandic volcano, Eyjafjallajökull, erupted in 2010 grounding thousands of flights, thousands of customers took to Twitter to enquire about delays and new flight times. At the time, KLM was taking its first steps into the world of social media and, like many companies, had a Twitter and Facebook account. Customer interaction was still mainly via customer service helplines, letter or email.

However, within an hour of the ash cloud appearing, the company created a social media room to give customers a central place to receive updates 24 hours a day. The airline’s post event analysis of data showed the value of using social media platforms to communicate with customers effectively. Following the crisis, KLM decided to transform its customer engagement approach to focus on digital and, according to socialbakers.com, is recognised for being a leader in social customer care because it responds to customers three times faster than any other airline on Facebook. By collating and analysing data, KLM created a strong customer experience by simply learning more about what its customers needed from them.

As mentioned in my last blog on unstructured data, there are numerous ways to collate and gather information to better support and respond to customers’ needs – whether this is using a CRM model to automatically capture and translate data or manually reviewing call centre scripts and social media conversations to spot opportunities, alter commercial direction and identify areas for improvement.

Ultimately, garnering data to mould customer service strategies offers organisations an opportunity to establish long-term and valuable relationships with customers to boost reputation, drive sales and generate better and more tangible business results.

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