While it's true that companies can use big data to improve their advertising and marketing strategies to attract new consumers, there are also plenty of things they can do with data to improve their relationships with customers they already have.
The latest trend in big data is using it to improve customer service. Today's consumers demand prompt answers to their questions from reliable, qualified professionals - and they want those answers to come from the right channels. It might mean phone, email, social media chat or mobile app. The customer is always right, and the company must be prepared for any means of communication.
Some of the IT world's big data titans have spoken out on how data can help transform customer service strategies. Michele Nemschoff, vice president of corporate marketing at Hewlett Packard, says the time is now for companies to adapt to the changing tech landscape.
"Let's face it - the Internet has changed customer expectations forever," Nemschoff wrote on her corporate blog. "In order to gain a competitive edge, companies need to find new and better ways to improve the customer experience on all levels."
Nemschoff went on to explain that thanks to the millions of blog posts, tweets, "likes" and comments submitted through CRM systems every day, companies can uncover a great deal of information about how people like to receive customer service. They can use this data to devise predictive analytics regarding each demographic within their client bases. In addition, they can use this information to market more products and services to their most loyal customers.
Of course, these efforts are all for naught if companies aren't able to ensure data quality. Business leaders are looking to improve their analytics capabilities, but if they aren't gathering precise, accurate information on each consumer, their efforts will be fruitless.
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