The first session of the Retail Jeweller India Forum 2020 dealt with how technology can be used to drive a customer-centric approach.
The session was presented by Rishikesh Trivedi, Digital Transformation Advisor, Suntech Business Solutions. Talking about the trends in the industry, Trivedi said that corporatization of industry players is a major factor in the sector, with the second trend being a significant change in consumer behavior, and the third being an attention-deficit economy. In this scenario, a business person will have three critical goals – engaging with customers in a creative manner so as to get their attention, powering the business through better insights, and boosting efficiency through well-thought-out decisions.
Trivedi had some insights of his own to share. He said business people have lots of cognitive biases based on their prior experiences, and their expertise. These inherent biases can limit their ability to think divergently and innovatively and come in the way of generating new ideas. He observed that this is a problem that is prevalent across all organizations.
He then raised some interesting questions – how to utilize technology to overcome these decision-making challenges and standardize the decision-making process so that more people within the organization are capable of making similar decisions?
Trivedi added that most businesses have similar concerns, similar questions – which are my top-selling products, who are my best customers, and so forth. But the answers to these questions keep changing week on week, month on month and year on year. Not only does the business landscape not remain static, how businesses utilize the existing information is also an important factor.
Today, every organization needs to have a customer-centric approach. Customers want to engage with brands on their own terms, explained Trivedi. Typically, most of the marketing agencies start with a demographic segmentation as a first step, but the more important thing is to have behavioral segmentation. He added that every brand has different segments of customers who need different levels of attention. Marketing needs to become more personalized; brands need to get to know their customers more intimately so that they have advance information about what they will buy next, and when.
Sharing the steps that his company has taken to get to know customer preferences, Trivedi said Suntech has built the right customer analytics and the right customer engagement framework to communicate and engage with its customers. The company has developed the RFMBTC (Recency Frequency Monetary Breadth Tenure and Continuous) model, which it uses for client segmentation. Suntech has also built the Customer Transition Matrix, which is based on the market transition model. Studies of customer behaviour reveal that customers have different life stages. Marketers have to grapple with the task of identifying and predicting a sales opportunity and send relevant and regular communication to the target customer base.
Suntech also undertakes campaign analytics to understand how customers are responding to different promotional offers. It has built interaction analytics which make it easier for customers to search for and buy, products online. But they can also come to the physical store to buy them. Trivedi said that Suntech has technical expertise across multiple platforms, which can help the industry to take better decisions.
He concluded by saying that the important thing to understand about the automation journey is that it’s not that business can’t be done manually, but it takes a huge amount of time. Automation helps you to speed things up with accuracy, and that is the power of technology.