Data is your customer

Data is your customer

Data is your customer

If you're in business today, you've likely figured out the hardest part: engaging your customers. After overcoming that initial hurdle, it's tempting to see customer engagement as a fixed milestone.

The hard truth is that you won't survive long term if you aren't constantly trying to make the customer experience better. Today, your data is your customer and the most valuable asset in delivering an exceptional experience. If you don't curate it and value it as an iterative process, you're going to lose it.

But look at how companies treat their data: blank fields, data scattered across systems and outdated, duplicate or incorrect information. Data is how companies know their customers -- their interests, intentions, buying habits -- and customer experience is only going to be as good as your data.

As artificial intelligence and cognitive, prescriptive and predictive data take center stage in the coming year, don't blindly implement technology as the savior of your customer approach. Use these data-driven insights to achieve the business outcomes you want, nurture customers across their entire journey and set your company's brand experience apart.

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Cognitive will be the standard to anticipate and respond to customers' needs, at scale.

By 2019, 40% of digital transformation initiatives will be supported by A.I. capabilities. A.I. will be the driver of business intelligence, but cognitive computing will become the differentiator for your customers, as it has the ability to learn, reason, empathize and tackle immense issues just like a human being -- at scale. This will be the standard to strive for on the path to A.I. and becoming more predictive, homing in on customers' needs, and helping employees have the right conversations with customers at the right time.

Companies are only beginning to adopt intelligent applications that help automate the next-best action by consuming data, transforming it into insights and then transmitting those insights across a company's enterprise. But Bluewolf's recent report shows that companies that have increased their investments in analytics in the past 12 months are three times more likely to see their data as a competitive advantage than companies that have not increased their analytics investments.

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