Entities often focus their efforts on the marketing strategies that will help them boost their sales. However, if these efforts have no clear objective, any positive results will not be sustainable over time. To change this trend, we need to start asking ourselves simple questions, such as: How much have I sold? Have I grown over time? Where are my clients? What are their preferred payment methods? What are their preferred shopping hours? We may also ask more complex questions, such as: Which clients should I focus my efforts on? How much will I sell over the next few months? Which of the clients I that have lost are a high priority to win back? Where are my client’s customers (end users)?
These and other questions can be answered through data and analytics, especially in a dynamic and changing market that is seeking to expand its sales channels and collection options to provide a better user experience for its customers. During these processes, a large amount of data is collected, but what happens to it? Are we able to transform it into something useful? And, an even more important question: Of all the data collected, do we know what is truly has value? And how much does it contribute to the business? Data can play an important role in generating value for different areas of an organization. For example, technical data may be relevant for infrastructure optimization and cost reduction. In the commercial arena, clients’ demographic information, economic activity, location or jurisdiction, and transactional history are vital for segmentation. Client segmentation can help optimize marketing campaigns, loyalty, retention, and even client recovery, while also being useful for risk management and fraud prevention.
This will also allow for important decisions to be made based on real, reliable data and established indicators. It will show the success or failure of the strategies implemented; help mitigate situations / risks related to money laundering, financing of terrorism, and financing of the weapon proliferation; boost cross-selling; provide transaction monitoring to mitigate fraud related risks; and geospatial analysis —all of this in real time.
But this transformation does not happen on its own, it requires certain tools. For example, we have always heard of spreadsheets, which are powerful tools if properly used and managed. However, spreadsheets lag when it comes to managing very large data volumes or corporate data governance. There are specialized tools for each area of Data Management. There are also solutions for data mining, improving the quality of information, integrating data sources, and many other visualization and analysis solutions that can help in these situations. Each of these alternatives offer plenty of both free and paid options. So, when deciding what to do in terms of data management, it is important to understand the company’s maturity level in these areas and the strategic importance or role you want to place on the use of data.
In the case of newly established entities, all the information should be collected in an orderly fashion. Even if the data does not appear to be useful immediately, it is possible that when the company reaches a higher level of maturity, it might look at certain data to answer questions that had not been previously considered.
In the case of companies with a higher maturity level, regardless of size, data should be seen as a competitive advantage. The adoption of different technologies has become a key differentiator; for example, 35 years ago, few companies had a website, but 15 years ago, almost every company had one. Ten years ago, companies did not use social networks; today, Instagram and WhatsApp are used as sales channels. Data is no different from these examples: there are hundreds of use cases that can exploit the available data to generate an important impact on business, operational, and strategic processes, among others.
This approach towards data must be adopted right away; you need to be proactive. We cannot live thinking about what may come instead we should take advantage of what we can do now. That is why the here-and-now of business lies in data. There are free tools to help you start, documented use cases, and economic infrastructures available for any company to use. You do not need specialized technical know-how, since many of these tools already make these tasks easier do manage. Any business that has not yet begun to adopt these technologies should start to worry because the competition is already leveraging their data to gain a competitive edge. Correctly using your data can help you learn where to sell your product, who you should recommend it to, whether another product is selling better than yours, how many items you are going to sell in a given period or place, and how loyal your customers are, among other countless questions. And all those questions are about the present, not the future.
The Future of Data Analysis
We are now starting to catch a glimpse of what analytics will be like in a few years, but one thing is clear, its main goal is will be to reach people in a personalized manner. Customer segmentation used to be based on sales and classified into categories such as gold, silver, and bronze. Today, customer segmentation is more complex, including factors such as age, place of residence, and interests, among others. In the future, everyone will be a segment in itself. What should I sell to a certain person so that they are more likely to make a purchase? In this scenario, we are no longer assessing a group of people, rather all the information particular to a person is being individualized and analyzed to address them in a relevant manner. This process must now be performed for thousands or millions of customers, which is certainly challenging from any perspective. At Evertec, we develop tools to manage and leverage the power of this information efficiently. Learn about Predictive and transform your business.