Data monetization: Are you sitting on a goldmine?

in WebFOCUS, Consumer Products, Finance, Insurance, Manufacturing, Other Services, Publishing, Retail/Wholesale, Technology, Transport, Utilities, analytics, Big Data, big data, Business Analytics, Business Intelligence, Business Intelligence, CRM, Customer-facing, data, data integration, data integrity, ERP, Customer Relationship Management (CRM), Customer-Facing BI, Marketing, Sales
January 08, 2014

Photo credit: M4D Group at Flickr 

Companies like Facebook and LinkedIn make their money from the value of their data. Through the richness of consumer information that they have, targeted advertising to their databases is in high demand. 

But it's not just social media and e-commerce sites that have the ability to turn customer details into tangible business benefits. To be clear, we're not talking about selling customer lists to marketing firms for a quick buck – quite the opposite.

For example, a bank has a detailed view of the financial information of their clients – where they shop, how much they spend each month, whether they have a family and/or pets, when and where they go on holiday, even their eating habits (i.e., whether they go out to eat more than they go to the supermarket). Manufacturers have insights into the production cycles and product types of customers. Most B2C and B2B companies collect myriad data from customers’ online, mobile, social, and in-person transactions, surveys, and other activities.

Without violating peoples' sense of privacy, it's possible to use this information to create new value-added services and offerings tailored to each individual. Amazon's suggestions are a prime example; users implicitly understand that Amazon is going to look at what they've purchased if it means they get genuinely interesting suggestions for other products that they might like in return.

Achieving this requires two key elements. The first is the understanding of your customers and the second is a way of easily and automatically finding, mining and analyzing the relevant information.

Getting buy-in is vital to success, especially as concerns about data privacy continue to grow. The best way to ensure customer acceptance is by highlighting the value that this type of approach has for everyone involved. Everyone likes a good deal, so being able to offer tailored solutions to customers – ones that adapt to them as their life changes – is a great way to promote loyalty and retention.

As well as direct offers, mining diverse customer and business information can help the development of innovative strategies for winning new business, boosting the value of existing clients and sustaining profitability.

But none of this is possible if the business can't effectively harness the fragmented customer information that exists in customer relationship management (CRM), enterprise reporting (ERP), help desk and other back-office systems, as well as the increasing volume of information being generated via social media.

In order to harness all this information, the business needs a platform that can effectively analyse, integrate and verify all of this data. When the organisation can do this across its multiple data sources, it has the potential to create up-sell and cross-sell opportunities and even new revenue streams.

An integrated platform for business intelligence, analytics, data integration, and data integrity gives businesses of all types the tools they need to tap the corporate data goldmine and turn it into business value.