I recently published two pieces of research that discuss the use of analytics for customer service operations. I’ve wanted to see these published for years, and I had half hoped that if I wished hard enough that they would materialize on their own. They didn’t, and I spent quite a bit of time listening to clients, looking at software products, and watching some of the projects that were going on. Pretty exciting stuff: matching customer personality to service rep personality, predicting the most likely reason a customer was calling, accurately presenting the correct marketing message that would induce a customer to ask more about an offer or service, or analyzing the efficacy of customer interaction flows – each of these delivered measurable benefit.
Yet despite the compelling case for a focus on analytics at every level of customer interaction, there is less emphasis on projects such as these than there is on Social Media projects. Maybe that is just the way it is – there are so many confidence men (and women!) and shills talking about the amazing benefits of Social Media – who can resist? It’s like a Shell Game played on the IT side-walk. You lay your money down and bet you know under which cup the pea, or nut, or whatever, comes to rest. But you are somehow always wrong, because the people around you are in on the con, and the shell holder is palming the pea to begin with – it’s a no-win.
I am interested in Social CRM and Social Media projects, and we are committed to helping clients build strategies. Hand in hand with these projects is our advice that other, vital, projects such as embedded analytics and knowledge management, not be left to languish. True: no one is hooting and goading you into these high-value projects, but your customers will reward your attention to their needs. Isn’t a part of ‘social’ acting on behalf of the customer?
What do you think?