Ideas & thoughts

How the covid-19 crisis forms the future of customer engagement

Updated on  April 13, 2020

Amid widespread lockdowns, grounded airline fleets and businesses suffocated by the outflow of customers, one thing to stick to, to keep the optimism high is that this crisis also creates opportunities somewhere. With the crisis still raging, no one is able to predict the magnitude and extent it may reach. However, we are already  starting to understand how business paradigms are changing and which steps to take to emerge stronger when the crisis finally passes.
In this article, McKinsey describe how Asian banks already modified their products and ways how to serve customers. Those able to react quickly accelerated their shift to digital channels and digitized core-banking capabilities. These allow for extended, real-time updated customer insights, digital signature collection and registration to smooth out customer acquisition. What powers this is the ability to collect and process customer data in real time to enrich their profile, understand their context and predict customer needs.

With businesses moving to digital for day-to-day activities, it will become critical to be able to personalise the engagement and offer for each particular customer. 

But for most companies, the chain “collect - enrich - understand - predict” to leverage the data is broken at some stage. Some still need to make proper use of their own data, while others are now building a 360 understanding of their customers and contexts. 

With the business volatility, which may be there to stay, fixed business rules to derive the offer will need to change. They will turn into flexible models, where machine learning algorithms calculate in real time what is the best offer in a current situation and trigger the communication using the appropriate channel. Based on the criteria, that can be easily modified from one day to the other as the fit of products for various customer contexts change (I can imagine for example Apple suggesting an online teaching app for me these days as they can see my laptop being stuck for days in the same location as my daughters’ iphones and could therefore infer I am one of the army of teaching parents needing help :) ).

This is a continuation of the trend that already existed. What is new is that something similar is now clearly visible also in the B2B world, a world that until recently existed largely on personal connections and interactions. People across businesses now see that meetings are not always necessary and realise the need for automated decision making. For example wealth management will require systems to be able to quickly recognise panic that may be triggered by a situation like the current pandemic to prevent the churn of customers from their products. Then, when the situation stabilises, be able to react quickly as rates and prices will still continue to be volatile in the future, just perhaps not as much as these days.

Therefore at Colours of Data we aim to work with our clients to help them get their “collect - enrich - understand - predict” chain for enriched real-time Customer insight right. To do that, we take into account a specific situation and priorities of each client and build the solution using best-in-class partner products like Tableau, Exponea, etc. The results of our projects are always key business KPI improvements, such as increased conversion in digital channels, improved customer engagement metrics or increased sales.

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