Analytics is hot, and it’s being use for everything from predicting when prospects are prime to make a purchase to when customers are likely to jump ship. Indeed, Gartner (News - Alert) believes predictive and prescriptive analytics will attract 40 percent of enterprises’ net network investment in analytics and business intelligence by the year 2000. Interest in analytics has led to at least a handful of acquisitions and partnerships in the customer care arena.
That includes Calabrio’s new partnership with Interactions, NICE’s purchase of Nexidia, and Verint’s acquisition of Contact Solutions.
Matt Matsui, senior vice president of products, markets, and organizational strategy at Calabrio, says the Calabrio-Interactions solution enables customers to record a conversation in the contact center, transcribe it, and identify phrases to flag callers that might be at risk of churn.
Brendan O'Kane, CEO and managing director of marketing automation outfit OtherLevels, says analytics have also invaded marketing and are now expected to be every part of the marketing mix.
For example, he says, Fruit Ninja creator Half Brick Studios is leveraging analytics to understand in detail how players of its games are engaging with its products. That kind of knowledge, he said, can help the company decide when and what in-app purchases to offer its players.
Infer Inc. now offers a predictive ad targeting platform that helps businesses identify and reach out to their highest-potential accounts and fuel deeper engagement. The company’s partnership with account-based marketing platform Terminus enables it to extend predictive analytics to business-to-business advertising.
“Predictive scoring and profiling technologies add tremendous value when it comes to sales and marketing workflows for account or lead prioritization, inbound marketing, and demand generation, so it’s a natural extension to bring these advanced techniques into your advertising strategies,” said Vik Singh, co-founder and CEO of Infer. “The most successful approaches are those that combine proven, best-of-breed platforms, as opposed to force fitting a one-size-fits-all solution that applies predictive to both advertising and automation. They are two different sides of the coin, each deserving dedicated focus and depth to do proper justice and to achieve significant gains in marketing and sales. That’s why we developed an open architecture that intelligently feeds our insights into your stack to make CRM, marketing automation and adtech systems all infinitely smarter.”
Vendor Adds Browser Push Feature
OtherLevels has added to its marketing automation solution with browser push functionality. As a result, its clients in the gaming, wagering, hospitality and retail sectors can reach customers who opt-in for notifications via desktop or mobile web browser.
CRM Giant Adds Snap-In Capability
Salesforce has introduced Service Cloud Lightning Snap-ins to help companies provide connected, personalized service across any device. As a result, organizations can quickly deploy a contextual, modern service experience by just snapping-in capabilities such as Cases, Knowledge, Live Chat, SOS (News - Alert), and Tap-to-Call to their mobile and web apps. Additionally, the Salesforce SOS Snap-in now has two-way video chat, empowering agents to quickly see and resolve customer issues.
SAP Helps With Customer Understanding
SAP Digital Consumer Insight is a new service from SAP now delivers more accurate understanding of physical consumer behavior, helping determine the demographics of people coming through a store or point of interest. Insights are based on near-real-time mobile data, providing details on where consumers are coming from, age groups and gender, comparison with other locations and/or competitors, and the devices they are using. “A crowd can change from night to night. We want to be able to customize the overall experience as much as possible – from music to menu to drink specials,” says Emma Matthieson, director of marketing for Brooklyn Bowl. “SAP Digital Consumer Insight lets us see the mix of people coming in for each event. We can also tailor our advertising to bring in similar people who will love the experience.”
Kitewheel Adds Features
Kitewheel 2016 has new features to make it easier for brands and their agencies to plan, execute, and optimize intelligent customer journeys. Kitewheel's Customer Journey Hub manages the cumulative experience of a customer across all touchpoints to build longer lasting relationships with greater value.
Talkdesk Addresses Customer Sentiment
Cloud-based call center software provider Talkdesk now offers Customer Sentiment Score. This allows companies to understand customer sentiment as well as predict potential customer unhappiness and proactively address it. "Today's companies need to do so much more than simply allow customers to connect with them on a basic level," says Tiago Paiva, founder and CEO of Talkdesk. "With the help of our Customer Sentiment Score, our users can go beyond simply handling customer concerns and proactively address and improve the customer experience."
Big Blue Leverages Cognitive Technologies
IBM in May announced an expanded set of solutions and features including cognitive technologies that allow brands to help deliver relevant customer experiences. Real-Time Personalization understands that a person's preferences change over time and addresses this through its Cognitive Rule Adviser, which learns, advises and suggests the offer and message should be shared with each visitor. It then discovers which segments are responding best to each variation (broken down by factors such as age, geography, etc.) and through self-learning algorithms and analytics fine-tunes the experiences over time.
Azure Supported by ServiceNow
ServiceNow’s Cloud Management solution now supports Microsoft Azure. This gives enterprises comprehensive visibility and control of their Microsoft cloud infrastructure. “Leveraging a cloud environment like Microsoft Azure for rapid application development provides enterprises tremendous agility to foster innovation,” said Dave Wright, chief strategy officer at ServiceNow. “However, this ease and speed can quickly overwhelm an IT organization. Our mutual customers now have the tools to quickly deploy their cloud resources while also maintaining control and compliance across all public, private and hybrid clouds.”
Adaptilytics Offers Predictive Analytics
ConnectLeader has launched a predictive intelligence engine called Adaptilytics that analyzes, prioritizes, and scores sales prospecting lists. “Adaptilytics is like using a metal detector, it instantly pinpoints the best opportunities from thousands of prospects in our database by analyzing characteristics such as technology deployed, organization details, and specific product interest,” says Gary Hudiburgh, business development representative team manager at Salsa Labs. “This accurate information helps us prioritize our lead scoring to get noticeable results fast.”
SaaS Platform Helps Manage Customer Conversations
LiveWorld Inc.’s SaaS platform is now available for brands to manage customer conversations across social media and messaging apps in real time for customer service and engagement. The new software combines analytics, elastic search, natural language processing, and sentiment for smart conversation detection, which can be configured to specific business structures (stores, regions, brands, products). Conversations are processed through a case management framework, which is optimized for social media and messaging apps.
OpenSpan Gets Enveloped by Pegasystems
Pegasystems in mid April announced it has acquired privately held robotic process automation outfit OpenSpan Inc. The acquired company’s technology, which is running on more than 200,000 desktops today, automates the routine desktop tasks that have traditionally been done by customer service representatives. Pegasystems says that complements its business process management and customer relationship management solutions.
Altitude Targets Agents with Social Network Challenge
Sounds like omnichannel solutions provider Altitude Software (News - Alert) is drinking its own Kool-Aid. The company is inviting contact center staff around the world to post a photo about the best part of their workday and tagging it with #MyCCDayAltitude and @altitudesoftware, and it’s awarding prizes for the best posts. Travel gift cards will be awarded for the photo with the most likes on Instagram and for the photo considered by Altitude Software staff as the best. “Hundreds of thousands of agents use our solutions in 80 countries worldwide to provide customer service, help desks, emergency services, public services, telemarketing, debt recovery etc. to millions.” Says Altitude CMP David Romero.“This fun initiative aims at knowing a little better this reality and contribute to build a community of what is a very diverse group of people but that have quite a few things in common by way of their daily work at contact centers.”
The newest generation of Mitel's MiContact Center offers a view into a customer's profile, which can tap into advanced skills-based routing capabilities to find an expert that can deliver to the customer the best customer experience. And MiCloud, Mitel's cloud communications solution portfolio, now natively intersects with more than 20 leading cloud-based CRM platforms; with productivity applications like Microsoft Office 365 and Google (News - Alert) Apps; and with cloud-based application environments for HR and recruiting, dealer and franchise management, financial management, and more.
Marketing Company Launches Apio
Valassis Apio is a new solution from Valassis that enables marketers reach highly accurate audience segments with the most relevant promotional messages. This is possible due in part to the company’s relationship with Dstillery, which provides billions of quality data signals daily from online and mobile app behaviors as well as locations. As a result of this integrated audience data, direct mail media and marketing services company Valassis will be able to identify new areas of opportunity and ensure brands stay connected to key prospects anywhere they go.
Edited by Stefania Viscusi