15 Ways Predictive Analytics Can Help Businesses Boost Their CX

Predictive analytics – using data to predict future outcomes – has helped businesses better understand what their customers need. Customers respond well to a business when they sense that their needs are being heard and met. Anticipating your customers’ buying behavior will more likely help retain a loyal customer base. Fifteen members of the Expert Panel of the Forbes Technology Council discuss below the ways businesses can utilize predictive analytics to improve their customer experience.

  1. Analyzing Customer Behavior Patterns. “Businesses can use predictive analytics to improve the customer experience by analyzing customer behavior patterns. This can help a business anticipate its customers’ needs and personalize interactions, experiences and offers. This intelligence can also help businesses provide proactive solutions to customers based on their inferred and expressed needs, ultimately enhancing satisfaction and loyalty.” – Vasudeva Akula, VOZIQ AI
  2. Determining System Failures And/Or Cyber Risks. “Using predictive analytics to determine system failures and/or cyber risk is an area of importance. If organizations can better predict cyber results, it positions them to reduce exploits and proactively manage vulnerabilities. The outcome has a direct effect on customers. Further, the data can show which customers may discontinue the business relationship due to costs, loss of revenue or a lapse in system availability.” – Dewayne Hart, SEMAIS
  3. Personalizing The Customer Experience. “Predictive analytics can be used to personalize the customer experience. By analyzing a customer’s past behavior and preferences, businesses can anticipate the customer’s needs and provide personalized recommendations. This creates a tailored experience for each customer, leading to increased satisfaction, loyalty and potential sales, thereby improving the overall customer experience.” – Indiana (Indy) Gregg, Wedo
  4. Managing Dynamic Pricing And Promotions. “Similar to how social media platforms use predictive analytics to determine which posts and ads users see, businesses can leverage predictive analytics to enhance the customer experience through dynamic pricing, promotions and personalized offers. This aligns with customer preferences and optimizes revenue, benefiting both customers and businesses.” – Sheraz Ahmed, STORM Partners
  5. Customizing Offers And Content. “One of the best ways to use predictive analytics is to create personalized offers and content lists for your customers. Every group of visitors has a unique set of goals and pain points. Carefully reviewing data and curating campaigns around each segment’s needs will help you create a positive experience and turn website visitors into customers.” – Thomas Griffin, OptinMonster
  6. Identifying Churn Risk. “Businesses can leverage predictive analytics to identify high-churn-risk customers and pay attention to them. Net promoter scores can determine if customers would recommend your brand over the competition. Predictive analytics can also anticipate shifts in customer sentiment to help the customer support team know who requires special attention or incentives.” – Raghu Ravinutala,
  7. Understanding How Customers Leverage A Product. “Predictive analytics can help leaders create the ultimate tech roadmap and help a technology business optimize the customer experience by helping leaders understand how customers are leveraging the company’s product or service. It enables tech businesses to predict what customers are going to need to drive their objectives, based on data and trends the system has previously deployed. This predictive state, based on tactical successes and data metrics, shows where the tech needs to go.” – Michael Koch, HubKonnect
  8. Delivering Real-Time Experiences For Customers. “Predictive analytics can help companies deliver real-time apps and experiences to their customers. By analyzing the context of historical data and patterns, you can not only anticipate customer needs, but also provide updates and/or results in the moment they need them. Now, we have the opportunity to combine predictive analytics with generative AI, which can simplify and enhance the communication of information.” – Chet Kapoor, DataStax
  9. Decreasing Service Outages. “One way that businesses can use predictive analysis to improve the customer experience is to perform an “AIOps” historical review of all of their incidents and service outages over the last 12 to 24 months. This type of holistic analysis will reveal trends around solutions that experience more outages than others as well as common outage root causes, which will influence implementation changes across the enterprise.” – Mark Schlesinger, Broadridge Financial Solutions
  10. Understanding Customers’ Unmet Needs. “Predictive analytics can be used to provide a better picture of a customer’s unmet needs, proactively prescribing the next best action for teams to take before the customer service agent or customer even knows it themselves. Partnered with real-time speech analysis, predictive analytics can prioritize and prescribe actions to be taken to improve calls and help team members improve overall interactions.” – Christopher Rogers, Carenet Health
  11. Onboarding New Users More Effectively. “Predictive analytics are most powerful when coupled with descriptive analytics. Imagine defining the prototypical user journey within your product, informed by thousands of historical user instances, and marrying that with a new user’s onboarding. The descriptive “what’s happened” nudges the predictive “where to next” as new users navigate the happy path toward full adoption of your product.” – Ken Babcock, Tango
  12. Anticipating Customer Orders. “Predictive analytics can drive anticipatory shipping. It can analyze customer data, purchase history and behavior patterns to anticipate customer orders. This allows businesses to proactively ship products to distribution centers or directly to customers’ locations, reducing delivery time and enhancing the customer experience.” – Emmanuel Ramos, OZ Digital Consulting
  13. Analyzing Customer Sentiment. “Sentiment analysis uses predictive analytics to analyze customer feedback and sentiment from social media, reviews and surveys. By understanding customer sentiment, businesses can identify areas for improvement and promptly address any issues or concerns. The potential benefits of SA include improved customer satisfaction, better brand reputation management and increased customer loyalty.” – Cristian Randieri, Intellisystem Technologies
  14. Calculating CLV. “Predictive analytics enables a business to calculate the customer lifetime value for each client, guiding leaders in efficient resource allocation. It helps identify high-value customers, who can be targeted with personalized marketing campaigns, enhancing customer retention and profitability.” – Amitkumar Shrivastava, Fujitsu
  15. Targeting Messaging And Marketing. “Predictive analysis on market trends and typical business struggles allows for targeted messaging and marketing of your business to the right prospects, at the right time. Nothing is more important than sales to a business. Empowering sales efforts through trending and predictive metrics means you’ll end up with hot leads and interesting offerings.” – Tom Roberto, Core Technology Solutions


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3 Best Practices for Turning Customer Data Into Marketing Insights

This digital age has given businesses the power of analyzing customer data to better drive their business practices. The explosion of data growth and market statistics and trends have produced a new kind of consumer and new avenues to market. As a result, customer relationship management (CRM) systems have become a must have to stay competitive in your field. Software innovator Diane Keng, CEO and cofounder of Breinify, an AI and predictive personalization engine, shares an interesting read on Destination CRM explaining the importance of consumer data and how to utilize it to build on your customer relationships. Keng notes that there is so much consumer data you can gather, so it’s tough to decide what to do with all the information, let alone picking and choosing only what is relevant to your business. If you need a place to start, here are 3 of Keng’s best practices for turning customer data into useful marketing insights to improve customer relations.

  1. Collect and organize your data effectively. “Done correctly, a foundation of data science—where you collect, tag, and analyze data using digital tools such as AI—can not only help you create better, more relevant consumer experiences, but also solve many other business problems throughout your organization.”
  2. Use data-driven insights to optimize the consumer journey. “To build personalization tactics that make consumer experiences more relevant, you first have to understand how to use your data to move consumers through their specific journeys. You might even find gaps in your funnel where personalization is missing. Those gaps allow you to create personalized experiences that help your brand build deeper connections with consumers and it shows them that you understand and care about their needs and preferences.”
  3. Use technology to deliver dynamic, personalized experiences. “Once you’re working from a solid foundation of data science and optimizing the consumer journey, you can begin to create a consumer experience that’s relevant and useful in a scalable way using your data and leveraging technology. These kinds of personalized, data-driven actions make consumers feel seen and heard and are way more likely to hit home than generic, one-size-fits-all messages.”

Data is a crucial resource to have and by using it right, you will see a difference in your consumer behavior and customer loyalty. With a solid foundation of data-driven practices in your team, Keng believes you’ll be able to keep growing your digital experience in a way that actually benefits and engages your target consumers.


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5 Advantages a CRM System Can Bring to your Business

Customer Relationship Management (CRM), while not a new offering, is still a ‘new’ concept for many businesses. What exactly is a CRM? A CRM system is a tool used by a company to manage and track customer interactions within your business. The tools at your disposable in your CRM system are pertinent to learning about your customer’s preferences, behaviors, buying patterns, etc. With this real-time data available at your fingertips, CRM systems prove to be advantageous for those companies wanting to have a competitive edge. An informative article on shares five major benefits of having a CRM implemented for your company.

  1. A CRM system can help you keep track of your customers’ contact information and preferences, making it easier for you to provide them with the personalized service they continue to desire.
  2. A CRM system can give you a 360-degree view of your customers, allowing you to better understand their needs and how best to serve them.
  3. A CRM system can automate many of the tedious and time-consuming tasks associated with customer relationship management, freeing up your staff to focus on more important things.
  4. A CRM system can help you track and measure key metrics such as customer satisfaction and lifetime value, allowing you to continuously improve your business.
  5. A CRM system can be a powerful marketing tool, helping you segment and target your marketing efforts more effectively.
No two companies will have the same CRM strategy, but every company can benefit from implementing this tool.

How CRM and ERP Integration Can Benefit Your Business

  • Communication. “Customer data in the CRM platform is a goldmine of information that informs much of the business’s back-end. Opening CRM data to the rest of the organization promotes transparency and empowers cross-functional collaboration among employees to solve problems.”
  • Planning. “ERP that integrates customer relationship management helps improve business planning. Based on CRM data, a business can better anticipate ebbs and flows in production, delivery needs, and the people and materials required across the supply chain.”
  • Product/service quality. “Integrating your CRM solution with your ERP system helps your business improve product or service quality, based on salespeople’s interactions with clients. When accounting data shows unprecedented returns or when the same complaint gets registered in the CRM, a good ERP system will alert management and point to a bigger internal issue. Effectively addressing product or service issues will reflect happier customer data in the CRM.”

Hansen concludes when your ERP and CRM solutions are integrated, your business can greatly improve with a streamlined data process driven by both systems.


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5 Ways a Good CRM Strategy Can Improve Your Business

Gartner predicted over 5 years ago that customer relationship management (CRM) would become the fastest (and largest) growing software market, making it the ‘norm’ for having a system in place for every business. That prediction was right because managing customer relationships is a key factor to a company’s survival. Now more than ever with the COVD-19 pandemic switching us to a more digital landscape, CRM systems help manage and maintain customer data and retention. However, even though CRM isn’t new, many managers don’t know how to effectively strategize their CRM system for a successful business plan. Cheri Beranek, President and CEO of Clearfield, shares an article on Newsweek of 5 ways where a good CRM strategy can improve your business.

  1. A Well-Calibrated Team Does Better Work. “Without a well-defined CRM strategy, you’ll probably have a poorly calibrated team. A CRM strategy goes hand-in-hand with a well-defined sales process and is just as critical as any other sales, marketing or customer service endeavor.”
  2. Well-Planned Contact Makes for Healthy Relationships. “With a CRM strategy, the whole team is on the same page about keeping customer relationships thriving, but without one, your team is left to guess. Without the right follow-up with your customers, interactions can go stagnant and acquisition opportunities are lost.”
  3. You Can Only Optimize What You Have. “The complexity of evolving CRM technology will drive competition for improving the experience at every possible customer touchpoint. With defined CRM throughout the sales process, you can leverage marketing automation platforms to manage what you tell customers and when.”
  4. A Digital Future Demands Elevated Customer Experiences. “In an increasingly digital world, businesses without a CRM strategy will struggle. COVID-19 spurred an even faster pace of digital adoption, so to stay competitive, the focus must shift to digital customer management, especially for companies like ours that previously depended on high-touch models.”
  5. A Matter of Dollars and Cents. “Having a CRM strategy in place brings economic benefits. Along with the appropriate upgrades and improvements, a focus on the customer can boost customer satisfaction by up to 30% and employee satisfaction by up to 20%. It can also bring up to 50% higher economic gains.”

If you haven’t already, you need to start defining your CRM strategy with your sales leadership and analysts. Beranek concludes that when done right, a sound CRM strategy will put your organization ahead of your competitors.


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How can CRM software help me improve customer relationships?

One of the biggest goals in almost every business is to build strong connections with their customers. Luckily, customer relationship management (CRM) systems provide all the necessary tools to do just that. The best CRM software puts the customer first, so you can optimize your marketing and sales processes to drive conversions and boost revenue. With so many CRM tools provided, where do you even begin? Business and technology expert Paul Maplesden shares an article at Tech Radar providing helpful information that will improve customer interactions, optimize your processes, and increase your bottom line. Maplesden notes the right CRM technology platform will provide you with the framework, measurements, and tools you need to transform customer relationships.

  • Understand the importance of improving customer relationships
  • Realize that building better customer relationships is about optimizing customer-facing processes
  • Focus on improving one area of customer relationships at a time
  • Understand the specific CRM processes that fall into each improvement area
  • Use CRM metrics to create a baseline for customer relationship processes
  • Understand the user-led, data-driven changes that will most improve specific CRM processes
  • Make necessary changes and measure improvements
  • Continue to track CRM metrics so everything runs smoothly

Improving customer relationships is an ongoing job. Repeating these steps will continue to optimize customer relationships and lead the path to business success.


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5 Best Practices for Maximizing Your CRM Capabilities

Having the right tools is essential for any job. What if you have all the right tools, but don’t know how to use them? Or worse, you didn’t even know you had the tools to use. This is what happens to businesses who do not see the full potential and resources that customer relationship management (CRM) systems provide. Being able to fully analyze your CRM data will help your business immensely. Thanks to the cloud, data can be updated and reported in real time, so people expect information to be accurate at all times. Your CRM needs to do this well. That starts with knowing your CRM’s capabilities.

Mark sales expert and president of Sales Xceleration, shares an article on Destination CRM highlighting five best practices to to optimize your CRM’s capabilities.

  1. Include a Salesperson in the CRM Selection Process. “By involving your sales team, you ensure that your CRM elevates their current operations rather than impedes them. Plus, you’ll automatically get more buy-in when the most relevant people—those who will work most directly with the CRM—are involved in the process. They’ll feel a sense of ownership and know that their input is valued.”
  2. Balance Sales Reps’ Time With Getting the Data You Want. “Considering leadership has invested resources in the CRM, they will want to see key data from the technology. That said, you need to strike a balance when asking sales reps to gather and enter that data; you don’t want your sales team entering information at the expense of business development.”
  3. Set Clear Expectations Surrounding Data Entry. “Optimizing your CRM starts with timely data. If your sales team is responsible for maintaining prospect and customer records, they need to use only the most up-to-date and relevant data. Data can’t be accurate if it isn’t updated regularly, and leaders can’t rely on any data that doesn’t reflect the most current reality.”
  4. Customize Your CRM to Fit Your Company. “An off-the-shelf CRM is easy to set up, but it’s not truly effective until you’ve updated it to match your company’s processes. Without CRM optimization to fit your company’s precise terminology and process, your sales team will view the CRM as obsolete and default to their own systems that are consistent with the proper terminology and tracking methods.”
  5. Build Custom CRM Dashboards That Reflect How You Do Business. “Create reports and dashboards that match the way you do business and deliver the style of reporting your leadership team expects. The CRM contains information, but you need to harness that information correctly for it to be actionable. The right dashboards will provide critical business insights, allowing your sales and management teams to understand where they are on forecasting and goals. Once the right data is in the tool and represented the right way, it becomes a valuable resource to understand pipeline status while seeing whether your team is on track to meet goals, overcome roadblocks, and solve sales challenges.”


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Is Artificial Intelligence the future of CRM?

Artificial intelligence (AI) is quickly becoming a hot topic, especially in customer service. Another area in a business where AI should shine is in customer relationship management (CRM). Virtual assistants are the future of customer service and will change how we interact with customers.  More and more companies are investing in AI because they for its potential for increased productivity, better quality work, and reduced costs. David Thompson at The Science Times shares an article listing the benefits of combining Artificial Intelligence with CRM.

Increased productivity. “AI allows employees to spend more time focusing on value-added activities while customer relationship management system chatbots handle repetitive tasks like answering FAQs and helping customers with problems that are easy to solve.”

Better quality work. “Replacing human interactions with artificial intelligence can improve the overall experience for businesses and their clients because it removes any frustration or confusion caused by miscommunications between employees and customers.”

Reduced costs. “Implementing AI into customer service is a lot cheaper than hiring new employees or outsourcing agents, saving businesses money in the long run.”

Thompson mentions how Ai can be used within marketing beyond customer service. AI can also be used to help marketing teams gather insights and analyze customer data for better decision making. With the continued growth and innovation of the digital age, artificial intelligence is here to stay. It will play an increased role for companies big and small in the coming years, especially in customer service and CRM applications.


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CRM and the Three Pillars of Data Management

Customer relationship management (CRM) systems not only help a business understand its customers, but stores important data about them and their buying trends. The data in CRM systems is vital to understanding the customer. CRM expert and Validity’s Jeff Foley shares an article (and video) on Destination CRM and CRM Magazine of the three pillars of Data Management within your system that are critical to business success. CRM data, like all data, should be as accurate as possible. Though with human error (and even machine error), there will be problems along the way that can harm data. Foley’s three pillars of CRM data management are:

Data quality – “That’s the profiling, the standardization, the deduplication, the enrichment, the automation of monitoring.”

Data governance – “The idea of the people, the processes, the technologies that come together to give you a plan, and give you a strategy for taking care of these, and give you standards so that you know what good looks like, and you know what you’re trying to achieve.”

Leadership support – “If you’ve got that buy-in at all levels, cross-functionally across the organization, and that trust in this process and the need for these this governance and to achieve this quality, then you’re less likely to run into challenges.”

Foley has found that companies with higher-quality CRM data had three traits he mentioned above. This is something you should consider when handling the precious data in your CRM systems.

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8 Steps to Create an Effective CRM Strategy

Customers are the lifeline of a business. Keeping them happy is key. A CRM, or customer relationship management strategy put in place will keep your customers connected and boost your sales. Sumit at ScoopByte shares and article with 8 steps to create an effective CRM strategy to keep both your business and customers satisfied.

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