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Better Collaboration: The Secret to Making Big Data Work Harder for Your Business

Business Intelligence

The deluge of information that is Big Data makes it possible to unlock the mysteries of consumer behavior, including precise habits and preferences – valuable stuff for any product developer or marketer. But when it comes to the strategic growth of a company planning for future success (all companies), Big Data alone is not enough.

As we are reminded every time we attempt to clear out our email inboxes, information for the sake of it is pointless. Making information work for your business is key!

In our post-industrial era, the swift delivery of information is the most essential element to business success – (s)he who holds the information holds the wealth. Enter next-gen collaboration tools like video and web conferencing and Unified Communications, designed with the single goal of facilitating the instant sharing of information across the world.

According to a report produced by the Aberdeen Group , combining collaboration with Big Data produced better customer responsiveness, shortened the business process cycle, improved stakeholder collaboration, and improved both employee and customer retention.

The powerful combination of Big Data and collaboration services is a home run when it comes to product development, market segmentation, consumer profiling, branding, and generally all decisions around business intelligence. Big Data is the invaluable market knowledge needed to engage customers. Collaboration tools ensure that this priceless information gets to the right decision makers as quickly as possible, where it will make an impact on business.

3 Scenarios Where Collaborative Business Intelligence Can Help Your Company

New Product Development

Very, very few businesses can get away with tossing a new, un-examined product into the marketplace to see if it sticks (save for the occasional Apple-esque device. Remember Steve Jobs’ famous quote about consumers not knowing what they want?). The rest of us rely heavily on an understanding consumer buying habits, market trends, profitability projections, distribution models and more. For that reason, the development of products has, since the beginning of time, been based on market demand; hence business’ unquenchable thirst for Big Data.

But again, collecting data is only the beginning. Getting it to your R&D, product development and manufacturing teams in a hurry is the second step, which enables companies to quickly determine which new products, features and services need attention. When it comes to the conception of a company’s goods – be it a product or service – input from all directions is valid and provides direction on the best way to grow business faster. But only if it’s delivered in time! Collaboration tools make sure the exchange of vital data keeps pace with the speed of the market.

New Marketing Campaigns

Similarly to product development teams, marketing departments consume data by the boatload. The important insights that marketers glean from Big Data go into meaningful engagement with customers. The end result is a message that is more on point and that has better targeting. Such campaigns yield a better return on investment and set a higher standard for marketing success.

Unlike product developers, marketing teams interact directly with end users, prospects and clients through a variety of channels, including but not limited to web events like webinars, video communication, campaigns, mobile collaboration and more.

Big Data dictates marketing activities in so many ways – content creation and marketing, content dissemination, messaging, product placement, target segments, vertical industries, and much, much more. But tools for communication and collaboration can be as important as consumer insights, providing marketers with a variety of channels by which to communicate and engage internal decision makers as well as external targets according to audience preference.

Better Customer Retention Efforts

As we all know, lengthening the consumer lifespan is a cost-effective manner in which to boost a company’s outlook. After all, studies say that it costs five times more to acquire a new customer than to retain an existing one. Businesses have historically turned to Big Data to provide the understanding needed to keep customers happy and attrition rates low.

One important data point that is transforming the delivery of such services across the board is the digitalization of customer communication. Analysts point to collaboration tools like video conferencing, Unified Communications and mobile applications as key to delivering a satisfactory customer experience. When it comes to customer service, the technology savvy public is expressing a growing desire to virtually communicate with businesses. The telephone help desk queue no longer cuts it. Online chat, video calls and mobile self-service are no longer client service luxuries but necessities.

Good business intelligence combined with collaborative tools helps companies to make better decision faster and to execute with fewer mistakes. Big Data plus collaboration tools  provides more opportunities to acquire new customers, retain existing customers for longer, and develop exciting new products and services tightly targeted to your customer base. It’s a roadmap for business success.

About the author

Martin Cheyne is VP, Global and EMEA Marketing at the Cloud Communications division of NTT Ltd., working with the leadership team to develop and implement targeted marketing strategies and campaigns. His role includes leveraging sales and market data, and identifying and segmenting key customer/prospect bases, to help the business achieve its critical business objectives. Martin founded the Marketing Operations department in 2010, and has since launched many successful strategic projects covering market segmentation strategy, 360° customer view, and global demand generation. Prior to joining, he worked for 11 years at SAP where he held several marketing and consulting roles, finishing his tenure as EMEA Data Infrastructure Manager.

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