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Personalized Customer Experience

As products and services become more commoditized, customers expect a seamless, easy experience. Increasingly, companies are using data from a customer’s interaction history to personalize their products and services, helping them stand out from competitors.

This can be as simple as writing a note to a customer or as complex as using personalization engines that analyze aggregate customer data to provide the best experience at an individual level. Four core technology developments are advancing personalization:

  • Continuous connectivity. Continuous connectivity supports an ongoing inflow of customer interaction data.
  • Advanced customer analytics. Advanced analytics turns real-time data into understandable insights about the customer experience and customer experience management.
  • Application programming interfaces (APIs). Widespread adoption of APIs allows for fluid communication between different applications—allowing Google Maps to integrate Uber into its travel time recommendations, for example.
  • Improved artificial intelligence (AI). AI is already helping companies perform complex analysis and make decisions.

How companies use personalized customer experience

  • Personalized communications, website design or mobile apps
  • Improved recommendation engines that resolve customer needs by offering a personalized suggestion
  • Seamless cross-channel communication that lets customers book a hotel room online, receive text notifications when the room is ready and use their phone as a room key, for example
  • Personal service touches, such as providing extra pillows to preempt customer requests at a hotel

Key considerations with personalized customer experience

Companies considering personalization must:

  • Manage customer experience thoughtfully. Creating unique personalized experiences requires a full understanding of customer episodes. An increasingly popular way to manage the customer experience, an episode begins when a customer need emerges and ends when it’s fulfilled. Managing the most important episodes effectively can improve the customer experience and financial results.
  • Evaluate the potential ROI of personalization opportunities. Determine the touchpoints or interactions that would benefit most from personalization and generate better customer outcomes.
  • Evaluate required technology and advanced analytics capabilities. Understand the current capabilities of your organization and key gaps to address. Recognize that some advanced forms of personalization may require technologies that are still nascent.
  • Be mindful of privacy. Consumers are increasingly concerned about their privacy and the collection of personal data. Companies must think about their approach to privacy management as they strive to deliver personalized experiences.
RELATED TOPICSHOW BAIN CAN HELP
  • Recommendation engines
  • Privacy management
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