My co-worker Tom recently received an email from a rental car company he used during a business trip. The email began, “Dear Mr. or Miss.” What followed in the email was of no consequence to Tom. All he could focus on was the supposed personalization that was really no personalization at all. It was laughable, and did more damage than if it had been a form letter.
We consumers know that companies have enormous amounts of data about us, both in aggregate and individually. And we expect companies to use that information to our benefit. When they don’t, we notice. We notice even more if their attempts are so flimsy that it shows they didn’t really try.
It’s no wonder data analytics continue to be a priority topic among customer leaders. Actionable insight can strengthen customer relationships, optimize business processes, and influence new innovations.
The articles in this issue highlight great strides made by companies like CarMax and MediaMarkt in their use of data to create omnichannel experiences. We discuss how IoT creates more complexity around customer data since multiple companies are needed to create an IoT ecosystem. We examine the barriers to omnichannel excellence. And we see what’s new in how companies are using analytics tools like Voice of the Customer and data visualization.
Customer-focused companies have one thing in common—they are built on a strong data foundation. After all, behind the ones and zeroes, data insights are human insights that impact real people, like Tom.
Enjoy the issue!