Written by Will Aitkenhead
Posted on 22/09/2015

Why digital transformation is critical for a Single Customer View

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A Single Customer View (SCV) gives businesses the chance to understand and follow their customers and communication across multiple channels. Customers now have the opportunity to communicate with businesses and brands through a variety of two-way channels, including Twitter, Facebook, telephone, email and much more.

Successful and effective multichannel customer service needs to be continuous and on tone, which means whenever a customer lodges a complaint or makes an enquiry, the response will be the same from any medium. Many companies will have different channels run by different teams who might not have the same priorities, which will lead to customers having very different experiences.

The customer knows best

Customers will make contact however they like, often through social media channels that may have been set up for marketing. Customers don’t know this though, and they expect the company to respond in the same way regardless of whether they are online, in a shop or over the phone. For this reason consistency is crucial.

We all know how frustrating it is to buy goods online and be unable to return them to a high street store. Or have to go through the same conversation about a problem that you’ve already explained to another employee on the phone or by email.

This is where a Single Customer View enters the equation.

Track all communications

A SCV gives businesses the opportunity to track all multi-channel communications quickly and effectively. Benefits of such an approach include:

  • Better customer service levels
  • Improved customer retention
  • Higher conversion rates
  • Boosted customer lifetime value

One of the key ways to do this is by using the huge amount of data available on customers. Pulling this data into one place means you can produce a more complete picture of the customer and their journey through your business. As a result you will be able to improve future performance and interaction.

Build the links

Without adopting new technology you will not be able to process the data effectively. You need to make sure you have a clear strategy between the Chief Marketing Officer and Chief Information Officer, focusing your efforts firmly on the customer and their experience.

Companies still using the traditional SQL-based relational databases approach – which has fixed predefined columns that are joined across many tables - will not have the chance to deal with big data or the cross channel world we discussed earlier. Modern technologies are now essential for all marketers. Without pre-defined columns there is much better flexibility and instant feedback.

Identifying key data

With so much more data available, advanced analytics platforms are required to understand and assess the day-to-day marketing decisions that are made. Traditional measures like age, location and gender are of course still useful but new information on time of engagement, the type of device used and even colour choices are all now available.

By embracing the technology you will create a better SCV that gives you the best chance of growing your business and boosting profitability.