Mauricio Valdez Mendia
Chief Transformation and Digital Officer
Microsoft for Walmart
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Expert Contributor

The Path to Hyper-Personalization

By Mauricio Valdez Mendia | Tue, 08/09/2022 - 11:00

The path to hyper-personalization is based on three pillars: Identity, contactability and traceability.

In the current era, customer knowledge cannot depend on the good memory of the salesforce.  Today, companies must aspire to an institutional and comprehensive knowledge of each interaction with each of their customers. The desire as companies is to deliver a personalized service.

In addition to knowing that a customer represents a challenge in itself, today, there are new regulations that protect the identity of the customer and their personalized data.  The challenge is even greater but not impossible. 

Information about a customer is generated through the interaction organizations have with them, which is why today it is vital that companies have an excellent mapping from start to finish of the experiences delivered throughout the customer journey.  These experiences have touch points that are supported by platforms, systems and ultimately the information falls into a database.

Each point of contact offers organizations the opportunity to capture customer data that can then be used to generate value; the information must be treated with the caution and security it deserves. As an organization gathers and aggregates more customer data and insights, the greater the care and privacy that must be taken over it.

Generating value for customers must be the fundamental principle of information gathering.   To obtain real customer insight, three data types are needed:

  1. Identity: Represents the ability to know the customer in their natural person, including name, surname, date of birth, gender and RFC. It's the difference between knowing that my name is Mauricio and you’re called Antonio.
  2. Contactability: The way in which an organization can contact its customers and includes address, telephone or cellphone number, apps, WhatsApp and social networks.
  3. Traceability: The ability to identify that a customer is having an interaction with the company. This is divided into two types:

Transactional or service: The interaction where a transaction is carried out and there is a record of what happened (or should be a record). Examples include a purchase, a clarification call, a complaint or a balance query.

Visit: That interaction where no transaction is performed but the visit or interaction of the customer with the organization’s ecosystem is registered. This could be a page view or a visit to a store.

Each organization must analyze where its customers are mainly located in the following diagram. The result will be a reflection of their business model and their efforts to get to know their customers.

1

The desired state is to have your customers is State A, where all three data types interact. 

When starting the assessment, it doesn't matter where most of your customers are located because there are ways to migrate from one status to the other and to eventually have the majority in State A.

We also need to understand that there are business models that facilitate having the highest concentration of customers in A: e-commerce, banking, retail by membership, etc. There are also elements that drive the migration to the A segment, such as digitalization, apps, and loyalty programs.

The insight and identity of the customer is facilitated if the organization is working on digitization projects because digital channels inherently have better data traceability.

In the following table, let’s analyze a customer’s journey from buying a T-shirt from a purely digital and a purely physical retailer.

2

It is easy to imagine the information that our ride app has about us: in addition to our contact, identity and payment method, It also knows our favorite destinations, it can infer which is our home and work address, with whom we share our rates, etc.

Since creating and adding value to our customers is the reason behind customer data gathering, it is important to have an omnichannel communication strategy that limits the number of communications that the organizations send to its customers. It is also essential to have a communication strategy that includes all direct channels: email, SMS, push notification, www, app and contact center (phone, WhatsApp, FB Messenger, etc.).

There are proven strategies that achieve the migration of a client in any status to a more complete status in our diagram.

Here are the actions for a correct migration:

  1. Loyalty Program: Mechanism by which a system of points or visits allows the client to access redemptions or levels that grant benefits. The loyalty program of preference should be built based on customer information in A and D to avoid waste.
  2. Data Update Program: Customer information must be constantly updated; for this, all the points of contact must seek the confirmation of the information under business rules that do not generate friction for customers. The program is the one that monitors the quality of the information of each point of contact and manages its improvement.
  3. Ticket Registration: Digital system by which the customer who uses cash or has not previously used a digital channel is motivated to register his ticket or folio and in exchange will participate in some dynamic or draw.
  4. Digital Draw or Activation: Digitization of the draws, through which a customer registers their payment method or digitizes their tickets to participate in exchange for a benefit.
  5. Digital Ticket: Process by which the sending of the ticket is made electronically to the email or cellphone of the client, offering the possibility of consulting it in his digital profile.
  6. Purchase with Home Delivery: In this process, by its nature, the customer is prone to provide the delivery address and means of contact to be constantly updated of the status of the shipment.
  7. Digital Registration: Digital channels offer all the information (I,CyT) but they need to have well-defined mandatory fields for the registration of a new customer.
  8. Subscription: This medium brings our customers closer to us to receive commercial, informative and promotional information.

The list is ever expanding and updating. The most important factor is to design a strategy to migrate from your current states to a more complete state and in time, achieve state A.

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