Analytics Helps Retailers Improve Customer Retention

IBM recently kicked off its big data market planning for 2014 and released a white paper that discusses how analytics create new business value for end user organizations. The major differences compared with last year’s event:

  • Organizational change. IBM has assigned a new big data practice leader for China, similar to what it’s done for other new technologies including mobile, social, and cloud. IBM can integrate resources from infrastructure (IBM STG), software (IBM SWG), and services (IBM GBS/GTS) teams, although the team members do not report directly to them.
  • A new analytics platform powered by Watson technology. The Watson Foundation platform has three new functions. It can be deployed on SoftLayer; it extends IBM’s big data analysis capabilities to social, mobile, and cloud; and it offers enterprises the power and ease of use of Watson analysis.
  • Measurable benefits from customer insights analysis. Chinese organizations have started to buy into the value of analytics and would like to invest in technology tools to optimize customer insights. AmorePacific, a Hong Kong-based skin care and cosmetics company, is using IBM’s SPSS predictive analytics solution to craft tailored messages to its customers and has improved its response rate by more than 30%. It primarily analyzes point-of-sale data, demographic information from its loyalty program, and market data such as property values in the neighborhoods where customers live.

These changes have demonstrated IBM’s willingness to better fulfill the growing customer demand for big data analytics and hopefully extend them to social and mobile. Marketers at end user organizations should learn new tools to better understand customer intelligence and continue the push toward customer life-cycle marketing. Forrester has established some guidelines to help marketers mobilize three main marketing resources, including tools: 

I’m excited to see Chinese customers starting to use new analystics tools to shift marketing strategies and optimize customer insights. Furthermore, technology vendors like IBM are introducing and localizing tools like social intelligence and enterprise mobility to marketing and strategy professionals in China.