Forward-thinking companies like Amazon aren’t just responding to the needs of their customers – they’re anticipating what customers want and providing offers and products based on customer sentiment, transactional trends, and lifecycle status.
Customers share truckloads of information about themselves – including behavioral, attitudinal, and transactional. Some of this information is shared intentionally through social media sentiment, as well as through survey responses and the like.
But some of the data such as channel behaviors is gleaned without customers’ knowledge. And that makes many consumers uncomfortable about the amount of information that companies have about them and are using to tailor offers and messaging.
Still, because customers have such high expectations for receiving great experiences from the companies they interact with, a growing number of organizations are using customer data and analytics to predict what customers want – sometimes before customers themselves can articulate those yearnings.
For example, one way in which companies can use customer data and analytics to better anticipate what customers might want is by analyzing unsolicited customer sentiment from forums, social media posts, and contact center interactions.
Although customer surveys and other forms of customer feedback can be useful in gathering responses and opinions about consumer interests, the responses can be biased if consumers answer the questions the way they believe the questioners would prefer. Analysis of spontaneous customer sentiment can offer a more accurate picture of the types of products or services that customers are most interested in.
Meanwhile, business leaders can also apply predictive analytics against various sources of customer data to determine what matters most to customers, such as their top preferences for in-store experiences or other aspects of the customer experience.
For instance, an analysis of customer feedback in user forums and website behavioral data may reveal that a high percentage of customers are abandoning websites if they can’t easily find the information they’re looking for or aren’t provided direct access to a customer service rep.
Website managers and other decision makers can use these insights to design the types of experiences that customers are seeking and ensure that customers are provided access to live agents through click-to-chat or other options.