Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Becoming the Master of Your Customer Data

In a recent article from Business Intelligence Network, Richard Skriletz discusses the importance of "Mastering Master Data -- How to Succeed with Master Data." Skriletz talks about how really understanding and integrating your customer data is key to building more profitable customer relationships -- and how solving this business problem with help your business reap huge rewards from a profitability perspective.

It goes without saying that in order to effectively compete in todays competitive marketplace, you must truly understand your customer relationships. Skriletz (and many others) have referred to this piece of mastering your data as being customer centric. It is important to understand the transactions that your customers perform with you, however, it is even more important to understand the customer relationship as a whole. Skriletz states it well: "This is the first challenge to becoming customer-centric: recognizing that a series of fragmented customer interactions delivered by separate customer service, account, product or billing business units does not ensure customer satisfaction. Businesses where customers churn are beginning to tackle this challenge in order to keep their high-value customers."

In our work with the telecommunications industry, we've experienced this first-hand. In the late '90s and early '00s, many of the large telecommunications firms were losing as many customers as they brought on to their network. It's really quite astounding to think about this. Those firms that embraced the concept of mastering their customer data and effectively looking at the entire customer relationship, were able to stem the tide of churners and create more loyal -- and long-term customers. Those who didn't -- well, let's just say there are fewer telecom companies out there today, and this is a contributing reason for their ultimate demise.

We've written a white paper (titled Data Management Solutions) on effective customer data integration techniques. We are passionate about this topic because we've seen our customers benefit greatly from utilizing this tool to make their direct and database marketing efforts more successful than ever. Let's all become masters of our customer data environments! We promise it'll make you a hero!

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