Let’s back up: Who is the connected customer?
Today’s digitally savvy individuals are closely associated with organizations that provide them with goods and services – in traditional retail settings and in other industries, such as health care. Blue Hill Research says the connected customer collaborates with these organizations not only through recent transactions, but over a period of time and in several ways. And they connect with multiple facets of organizations – data, results, decisions and staff.
Organizations are ready to extend this intensely personal connection and transform it into a more deeply personalized, long-term relationship where the customer sees them as a trusted partner. But Blue Hill Research says it requires investing in closely networked IoT and analytics to gain an additional layer of environmental and contextual insight.
The three Cs for building a connected customer model
Settings for today’s customers are many and complex. to optimize the connected customer experience, organizations need to use the right combination of technology and processes. This enables them to adapt to the customer’s real-time needs, lifestyle, technology preferences or existing services.
Blue Hill Research recommends that customer-centric organizations pursue an IoT model based on these “three Cs”:
- Connected decisions. Organizations’ customer decisions must be collaborative, based on social technologies that include insights from the full range of documents involved in the many ways customers spend with the organization – tickets for service, social media, reviews, analysis and more.
- Connected data and analysis. To take into account all available customer information, organizations must unite enterprise, third-party and IoT data and then analyze them as a whole to get a complete profile of the customer.
- Connected devices. Data from both fixed and mobile devices can be collected through the cloud to inform a more seamless, bespoke experience. Connected devices often help deliver the customized experience while providing real-time streaming data that enables customization.
As Blue Hill Research explains: “Af build analytical insight from data streams Created by connected sensors, equipment, vehicles and other ‘things’, organizations can differentiate based on a variety of quality measures that customers readily recognize and appreciate. “
An industry example
Consider an example from health care. Let’s say a patient – a “connected customer” – wears a defibrillator with a location tracking that uses a Bluetooth gateway and a mobile connection to send data to the healthcare provider. The provider uses this data to keep an eye on the patient’s health by suggesting timely treatment and notifying him of any risks. Aggregated data can be shared with a wider team of medical professionals, and decisions can be communicated quickly through pager alerts, texts, and geotracking visualizations.
Blue Hill Research cites several industries that can benefit from using IoT as a technology framework that supports the connected customer. These include tools that use smart meters to streamline service delivery and reduce customer costs; hospitality companies that integrate customer, inventory and situation data from multiple locations to provide highly personalized visits; and transport companies gathering vehicle tracking information to optimize supply chain logistics and supply.