Leveraging Big Data in Customer Communications
Big data is everywhere because, well — it’s BIG! Internet users, alone, generate an estimated average of 2.5 quintillion bytes (that’s A LOT – a quintillion is a number equal to 1 followed by 18 zeros) of data each day. 1 These massive data volumes are projected to double every two years. 2 All of this newly collected information promises consumer and business insights that weren’t previously possible. Used correctly, big data can dramatically boost your business’s customer communications efficiency and lead to improved engagement. So, what is big data?
Big Data is defined as high-volume, high-velocity and/or high-variety information sets. 2 These large data sets are analyzed to provide enhanced consumer insights, add ease to decision making, and increase process automation for a variety of tasks .3 Let’s break down qualifications of big data even further by defining classifications of the three Vs.
The 3 Vs of Big Data
- Volume refers to the quantity of data. Big data involves massive data sets — often on terabyte or petabyte scales (That’s BIG — 1 terabyte = 1,024 gigabytes and 1 petabyte = 1,024 terabytes). 4 Data sets this large require significant pre-processing, cleaning, and structuring to be useful. 2
- Velocity indicates the speed at which data arrives and must be processed. High-velocity data is often processed in real-time or near real-time, adding significant hardware and software challenges.2
Sources of Big Data
People drive the lion’s share of big data generation, but they aren’t the only sources available. The Internet of Things (IoT) is embedding countless sensors throughout our physical world, and each one adds to the torrent of collected information. Additionally, machine learning is fast becoming both a significant driver of new data sets as well as a leading consumer of that data.
No matter the source of your data, your company can use big data to drive better customer experiences.
How Data Analytics Can Drive Better Customer Experiences
You can learn a lot about your customers through data analytics, and the benefits are clear. 58% of businesses report a marked rise in customer retention when employing customer analytics 5 – just a 5% bump in customer retention can translate to a 25% increase in profits. 6 Here are a few big data use cases that demonstrate the technology’s value:
Big data technology allows personalized marketing with unprecedented granularity. By analyzing customer purchase histories, browsing behaviors, marketing interactions, social updates, customer support records, and other transactional data sets, businesses can determine what customers want, when they’re most likely to buy, and what marketing messages will make them more likely to respond. The better you understand your customer, the more relevant your marketing automation becomes. You can reach them with the right offer at the right time far more often.
Social Media Insights
Your customers and prospects are talking about you on Twitter, Facebook, and other social platforms. Are you listening? If so, how effectively?
The fact is that we send over 500 million tweets daily. 7 Facebook sports over 1.85 billion daily active users. 8 It’s hard to keep track of the conversation about your business with that much chatter, let alone pull useful, real-time insights.
Big data practices can handle this information, with profound results. You’ll discover customer service trends you weren’t aware of, consistent brand narratives, both positive and negative, that your customers share, and common complaints that need addressing. You’ll see trends play out over hundreds or thousands of customers, helping you to address their concerns more rapidly, leading to better customer experiences.
Robust, Relevant Printed Collateral
So far, we’ve focused on digital communications, but printed statements and marketing materials can benefit from data technologies as well. The best example we can offer is our company’s own data solution that improves the design, readability and response of printed communications.
FSSI offers a customizable data formatting solution that helps convert data into highly-effective statements, invoices, compliance communications, investor communications, utility bills and insurance documents, in addition to personalized direct mail and variable data postcards. Your customer experience improves with every transactional and marketing refinement you make.
Simultaneously, you can also utilize a self-service statement messaging portal to convert unused whitespace in your billing statements, invoices, and other documents into a compelling place for upselling, cross-selling and informational opportunities.
Any of the above strategies are also equally effective with electronic customer communications – for precisely composed, uniquely formatted print and electronic documents.
Tackling big data velocity challenges allows your business to offer true omnichannel customer support from your desired print and digital communication channels.
Machine learning algorithms that are fed a steady data diet can learn to answer questions quickly without human involvement. When an answer isn’t readily apparent, these technologies help customer queries reach the right people quickly. When this technology is tied to a CMS, customer interactions are instantly personalized with relevant customer data available at your support staff’s fingertips.
Partner with a Secure Communication Provider
Big data is only going to get BIGGER. On one hand, this creates new challenges, from storage issues to data security concerns; however, harnessed properly, you can learn a lot about your business and customer behavior, leading to enhanced communications and higher customer retention rates. Big data is the future of customer experiences. Partnering with a secure communications provider like FSSI means you can leverage your data for optimum customer documents while minimizing risk.
FSSI is a print and mail outsourcing service provider specializing in high-volume customer communications and helps businesses maximize their impact and strategic value through customizable solutions. When you partner with FSSI for your critical communications, you get the benefits of being covered by multiple facility locations, state-of-the-art print and mail equipment, secure data processing, innovative backup/archival technology and an expert network security team.
Call 714.436.3300 today to speak to an outsourcing specialist and assess how FSSI’s secure data processing services and highly customizable data formatting solutions can enhance your customer communications.