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Customer Insights: competitive intelligence at your fingertips

Even as organisations continue to collect increasing amounts of data about their customers, gaining a true understanding of the customer can be harder than it seems. 

Dynamics 365 Customer Insights: competitive intelligence at your fingertips

While there are endless avenues of exploration, gaining actionable insight about customers can often be a matter of knowing where to look and when. And, let’s not overlook the complex task of bringing data together from multiple silos in a robust and repeatable way – a task that can take weeks, if not months, and often requires a wide range of technical skills to achieve.

Which is why Microsoft has developed Dynamics 365 Customer Insights – a comprehensive, end-to-end customer, 360 degree solution built using Microsoft’s enterprise-scale Azure technologies.

Dynamics 365 Customer Insights accelerates the time to value for businesses seeking a holistic view of their customer base. Customer Insights provides out-of-the data connectors to the world’s most popular customer applications, along with sophisticated machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI) models to deliver instant, actionable insights for every customer.

The age of the customer

Customers are savvier and more demanding than ever, and they have a world of information and choice at their fingertips. This has given rise to the age of the customer in which customer experience is by far the most important differentiator an organisation can leverage; even more than price or quality.

Customers don’t want to feel like they’re one of many. They want to feel unique, special, and indispensable. And, they want to feel this way regardless of whether they’re interacting with your business in person, via social media, on your website, in a chat, or on the phone. They want you to know them well enough to suggest which products they might enjoy and they want you to value them enough that you’ll offer them discounts on those products or access to other special offers.

It’s a tough ask but it’s essential for businesses to find a way to give customers this exceptional experience. Companies that are succeeding in the race to provide the best customer experience are leading the way in the marketplace.

Customer interactions are complex

Your organisation, like many, probably stores customer data in a customer relationship management (CRM) system, records transactional data in an enterprise resource planning (ERP) system, and tracks multi-channel interactions with customers in a range of other systems. Meanwhile, customers are interacting with your product in different ways, sharing their opinions on social media, and either returning to your business or not, depending on their experience.

Tracking all of this behaviour in different channels and interactions at different touchpoints is the only way to gain a complete understanding of your customer. A complete understanding of the customer is crucial to ensure your business provides an exceptional, individualised experience that keeps the customer coming back for more.

However, achieving this is traditionally cost-prohibitive and complex, requiring significant resources. Hence, it has mostly been done by large enterprises with the capability to invest in customer-centricity. This left many mid-sized and smaller organisations with their noses pressed up against the glass, dreaming of the competitive advantage they could achieve if only they could deepen and improve their customer understanding.

This doesn’t mean that businesses of all sizes haven’t tried to improve their customer-centric credentials. From data warehouses and lakes to advanced CRM platforms, businesses have long been trying to solve the challenge of bringing all customer information together under one umbrella. Unfortunately, the increased complexity of data collection and storage, as well as the velocity at which data volumes are growing, has meant that there has always been a gap or a blind spot somewhere.

Customer Insights and the road to competitive advantage

Recognising the common challenges that many businesses face in aggregating and analysing the vast amount of customer data available, Microsoft has developed Dynamics 365 Customer Insights.

Dynamics 365 Customer Insights delivers out-of-the-box data integration and intelligence to quickly gain competitive insight. Built on the rock-solid Azure platform, Customer Insights provides a low-code platform to source and merge data from across and beyond the organisation into one unified view of the customer. It then leverages sophisticated pre-built Azure machine learning, AI and Power BI services to surface real-time, customised recommendations for every customer.

In a matter of days, rather than months, Customer Insights will allow your business to give customers a consistent, individualised experience regardless of the channel they use.

Get in touch with me today to schedule a free Customer Insights demo and readiness assessment for your business.

Posted by: Travis Barker, General Manager Market Development, Data & AI | 23 March 2020

Tags: Data Analytics, Data Insights, Dynamics 365, Customer insights, #datareimagine

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