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  • admin 9:51 am on December 13, 2017 Permalink
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    Supervised Learning in Disguise – the Truth about Unsupervised Learning 

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  • admin 9:57 am on August 8, 2017 Permalink
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    Myth versus reality: The truth about cloud security 

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  • admin 9:51 am on May 17, 2017 Permalink
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    Discovery, Truth and Utility: Defining ‘Data Science’ 

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  • admin 9:54 am on August 29, 2016 Permalink
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    Is A Picture Worth A Thousand Words? The Truth About Big Data And Visualisation 

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  • admin 9:51 am on May 5, 2016 Permalink
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    What’s Working, What’s Not? The Truth About Marketing Attribution 

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  • admin 9:51 am on March 26, 2015 Permalink
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    The Four Essential Truths Of Real-Time Customer Engagement: The Fourth Truth 

    RET-1008-LDELIVER.

    At this point in our story, we have a connected consumer “damsel in distress” (or “damsel that wants this dress”) interacting with a real-time engagement channel. You know who she is and what she means to you. You know what journey she’s on and what strategic marketing campaigns she’s part of. In that moment of clarity, you have performed real-time rules-based analytics, self-learning predictive analytics and strategic arbitration of our enterprise offers, and you’ve decided specifically which offers to extend and where.

    What could possibly go wrong?

    Well, as much as I hate to stop all that positive momentum, it’s now time for the fourth and final essential truth of real-time customer engagement:

    If you can’t get your message delivered at the right time, it doesn’t really matter how good it is.

    That’s right. If you can’t get your offers delivered to the consumer in real-time, all that work has been for naught.

    This is where the conversation gets channel-specific (and yet more individualized), and as true omni-channel marketers, we should cover all the interactive channels. For sake of argument, let’s consider: customer care, web (paid, earned, owned), kiosk/ATM/POS/self-service, email/SMS, social and mobile.  If anyone thinks I’m missing one, tweet me (@TDjtimmerman) and I’ll publicly issue a mea culpa.

    Customer care: Generally regarded as the best prepared channel for getting a message/offer delivered in real-time. As long as your customer care application supports the real-time selection of customer-specific offers, the agent handling the call can easily read an offer in real-time.

    Web: The channel with the greatest immediate potential, due to the sheer amount of transactional traffic volume online. Of course, the ideal scenario is a real-time customer interaction on an “owned” website where the customer is easily and uniquely identified and the dynamic content of the website is easily managed. Paid and earned websites are somewhat trickier because you don’t dictate the amount of customer identification data that you’re provided in real-time, and you often have to use technology partners to get your content/offers/messages (however limited they may be) delivered in real-time. Even so, the goal remains the same: to return an offer that ultimately drives interaction on an owned website.

    Kiosk/ATM/POS/Self-Service: Essentially, these are instantiations of websites. For the most part, all the applications that drive these devices are web-based client applications, and as such, each may be treated as an owned website. There may be a relatively anonymous “outer layer” to the application, but customer sign-on/identification/authentication must be enabled to realize true one-to-one offer individualization. Therefore, these are the perfect channels to include in loyalty program-based interactional offer decisioning and delivery. With the geo-fencing and beacon technologies available today, you can easily integrate these location-based devices/channels into the real-time customer experience.

    Email/SMS: If the content is relevant, an email/SMS can certainly be incorporated into the real-time customer engagement mix. However, while the initial email may have been marketing-driven or transactional in nature, the specific content of the generated message needs to be recalculated at the moment the email is opened (not static from the time the message was originally created) – just in case something has changed with the customer from the time the message was generated until the time the email/SMS was opened by the customer.

    Social: If you want to engage with consumers through Facebook Custom Audiences and/or have your own social sites with social teams to monitor them, you can certainly implement real-time decisioning and customer engagement tactics across these channels. Much like with paid or earned web interactions, the customer identification options can be more limited. However, that’s nothing that can’t be overcome with the right technology partners and marketing applications that can help you better understand your customers and better determine what journeys they’re on so you can make a real-time offer decision.

    Mobile: Likely the channel with the most future potential. Mobile is here to stay, and it’s only going to get more prolific, with more payment/transactional options. Mobile is, and will continue to be, more than just phones, pads and tablets. Any iOS or Android device needs apps, and when your app is on your customers’ mobile devices, you’ve opened up a brave new world for you… and for them. Apps allow you to push to mobile, which makes them even more interactive and real-time than waiting for someone to access your website from their mobile device. Are all business relationships conducive to a mobile app? Maybe not, but if yours is, you’ve got to be excited about mobile apps for real-time customer engagement.

    Each interactive channel brings its own challenges and each brings its own opportunity. But, if you can’t get your message delivered at the right time, it doesn’t really matter how good it is.

    This is the final post of a 5-part series.  Links to all related posts in the series are presented below. 

    Read the first post in this series: The Four Essential Truths Of Real-Time Customer Engagement

    Read Truth #1: The Four Essential Truths Of Real-Time Customer Engagement: The First Truth

    Read Truth #2: The Four Essential Truths Of Real-Time Customer Engagement: The Second Truth

    Read Truth #3: The Four Essential Truths Of Real-Time Customer Engagement: The Third Truth

    Read Truth #4: The Four Essential Truths Of Real-Time Customer Engagement: The Fourth Truth

    The post The Four Essential Truths Of Real-Time Customer Engagement: The Fourth Truth appeared first on Teradata Applications.

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  • admin 9:51 am on March 14, 2015 Permalink
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    The Four Essential Truths Of Real-Time Customer Engagement: The Third Truth 

    Mobile ApplikationenDECIDE.

    Unless you’re a football fan like I am, the name Vince Lombardi might not be familiar to you, and you might not know that he used to be the head coach of the Green Bay Packers, one of the original teams in the US professional National Football League. In addition to being a winning coach, Lombardi is famous for his many colorful quotes, witticisms such as, “If you’re not fired with enthusiasm, you’ll be fired with enthusiasm” and “Once you learn to quit, it becomes a habit.”

    Personally, my all-time favorite Lombardi quote is this one: “The measure of who you are is what you do with what you have.” Isn’t that the goal of marketing as a discipline? Doesn’t is sum up what marketing is all about – to make the best out of what you have?

    Marketing isn’t about “putting lipstick on a pig.” It’s about “putting your best foot forward” and taking the greatest advantage of each and every chance you have to interact with your individual customer.

    So, if you’re ready for real time marketing (because you know who your individual customers are and you know what journeys they are on), then it’s time for you to face the third truth of real-time customer engagement:

    If you can’t decide which of your offers are most appropriate, you can’t expect your customer to do it for you.

    I know that sounds good on paper, but how does it work in the real-world? How, exactly, can you decide which offers to extend?

    Great question… and if your answer is “just give them everything and let them decide,” you’re not trying hard enough in this relationship.  Remember: This is about leveraging individualized insights.  What’s the point of understanding the customers you’re interacting with and knowing what journey they are on if you’re not going to make some really strategic decisions around which specific offers you want to extend to this particular customer? This when you prove your ability to engage with connected consumers – on their terms, on their journeys, in their moments of need.

    Granted, deciding which offers are the most appropriate will require making some difficult decisions, and you’ll have to make those decisions quickly. That means you simply cannot resort to human intervention. It simply won’t scale as elastically as needed. Instead, you’ll need modern analytics tools, like automated decisioning technology that’s lightning-fast and capable of making determinations based on a number of different rules and attributes.

    Keep in mind where we started this conversation a few weeks ago, with the notion that “not all customers are created equal.” The opportunity that exists at this moment may be very specific to this customer, and there’s nothing worse than a self-inflicted marketing blunder. If you extend the wrong offer, you may lose your chance with this customer. If you extend too large of an incentive to the wrong customer at the wrong time, you may lose margin on the transaction unnecessarily. Plus, you can’t expect your customers to weed through a litany of poorly targeted offers hoping to find one that resonates. These days, your approach can’t be based solely on the results of an A/B (challenger/champion) test. As the old adage tells us, “You may never get a second chance to make a first impression.”

    Therefore, whatever real-time decisioning engine you select needs to be able to arbitrate potential messages/offers based on the strategy to be applied to this customer, specific offer qualification/eligibility rules, statistical likelihood of offer acceptance and overall business impact. That way, you’ll know that you’re not only selecting the best offer(s) for each customer, but that you’re also selecting the ones that make the most business sense as well.

    Read the first post in this series: The Four Essential Truths Of Real-Time Customer Engagement

    Read Truth #1: The Four Essential Truths Of Real-Time Customer Engagement: The First Truth

    Read Truth #2: The Four Essential Truths Of Real-Time Customer Engagement: The Second Truth

    The post The Four Essential Truths Of Real-Time Customer Engagement: The Third Truth appeared first on Teradata Applications.

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  • admin 9:51 am on March 5, 2015 Permalink
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    The Four Essential Truths Of Real-Time Customer Engagement: The Second Truth 

    targetDETERMINE.

    The ancient Chinese philosopher Lao-tzu is often credited for saying, “The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” That’s a beautiful quote. It emphasizes the singular importance of the first step…the directional heading…ambition…impetus…the seminal starting point.

    However, a better translation from the original Chinese text is this: “The journey of a thousand miles begins beneath one’s feet.”  That’s just as beautiful as the first version, but the emphasis is on a completely different part of the journey.

    In the second version of the quote, the attention isn’t on the first step at all – it’s on the moment immediately before the first step, that moment of decision when you know something needs to happen. The journey truly begins “beneath one’s feet,” when you’re compelled to get up, to go, to launch, to begin the journey, to make that proverbial single step.

    Therefore, I could argue that a journey of a thousand miles is actually made up of a series of these moments. There has to be motivation to take not only the first step, but each subsequent step after that.

    Have you ever gone on a family vacation? Oh the best laid plans… I can’t think of any journey I’ve ever made with my family that didn’t require a “reassessment” of our itinerary, destination, dining options, entertainment plans, survival skills, parenting skills or general sanity somewhere along the way.

    Looking back, many of those journeys could have easily ended with me turning the car around and going back home (as I unconvincingly threatened to do multiple times).

    But they didn’t. The journeys continued and ultimately, became a series of critical journey moments. Those are the moments where we stand, right now, at this second, comprised of all that’s happened to us thus far – and all we hope for as the journey continues.

    So, the second of four essential marketing truths is about recognizing the journey for what it is and trying to guide it when and where you can. The second truth is:

    If you’re not managing the journey your customer is on, someone else is.

    Marketers always hear about customer experience management, and it’s very important.  But, even more important is to remember that you don’t have to control the first step in order to dictate the path. Just as Lao-tzu implied, the power to influence, empower and affect the customer journey lies beneath your feet…where you stand, right now.

    It doesn’t matter who started the customer journey. What matters is who engages in real time marketing to manage the customer journey. If you are not engaging in the customer journey already, it’s time to get started. You need the analytics tools to be able to recognize the individual customers you’re interacting with and determine which journey they are on. Why? Because if you’re not managing the journey your customer is on, someone else is.

    Read the first post in this series: The Four Essential Truths Of Real-Time Customer Engagement

    Read Truth #1: The Four Essential Truths Of Real-Time Customer Engagement: The First Truth

    The post The Four Essential Truths Of Real-Time Customer Engagement: The Second Truth appeared first on Teradata Applications.

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  • admin 9:51 am on February 23, 2015 Permalink
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    The Four Essential Truths Of Real-Time Customer Engagement: The First Truth 

    biz-1031-lDETECT.

    Let’s face it: Not all customers are created equal. Some customers are your lifeblood; others seem to drain the life out of you. Different customers drive different degrees of revenue, just as they require varying costs to serve. Understanding these distinctions, and adapting your interactions and the offers you extend, can determine how much incremental revenue/profit you’re able to realize from each customer engagement.

    In fact, the issue of distinctive customer value is at the crux of many “connected customer” predictions, and it serves as the foundation of my first essential truth of real-time customer engagement:

    If you don’t know who you’re talking to, it’s almost impossible to be relevant.

    I was first exposed to this concept in 1996 with the release of Frederick Reichheld’s quintessential tome, The Loyalty Effect.  More recently, Reichheld wrote that 2015 should be the year that companies should fire bad customers. What? Fire your bad customers? Isn’t that heresy to a marketer? We spend all this effort on marketing campaigns designed to attract and retain customers, and now Reichheld says we should intentionally eliminate certain transactions and transactors? But his philosophy is sound. It actually makes perfect sense, if the cumulative effect of transacting with a specific customer is negative in the strategic long term.

    If that is indeed the case, not knowing who you’re interacting with might create a competitive disadvantage to you. You could be neglecting to put your best offer forward to good customers, or interacting with “bad” customers in a way that minimizes their profit/margin potential.

    So then, this first essential truth is ultimately about being able to detect whom you’re dealing with at the point and time of customer interaction. Unfortunately, though, just as all customers are not created equal, all interactional channels are not created equal. The challenge of detecting or uniquely identifying customers varies across paid, earned and owned interactional opportunities. Let me explain…

    To gain individualized insights about the customers you’re interacting with in the “paid” channel world, you have combine digital profile “demand-side” data with digital consumer data in a data management platform (DMP). But, depending upon the depth of your DMP, it may still be quite difficult to identify specific customers beyond visitor and cookie data. Still, with the right analytics tools, much can be done to individualize the engagement and learn from that device-level customer interaction.

    “Earned” channels (like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn) are easier because you have the option of consuming account profile data as customer identifiers and personalization attributes for offers, treatments and messages.

    Finally, “owned” channels – where you’re in complete control of the customer identification quandary – offer opportunities to detect exactly whom you’re interacting with. Then, you can treat them in ways that are commensurate with their standing as one of your Known and Appreciated customers… or banish them to the barren hinterlands of the voice-response unit if they fall into the category of the Known and Unappreciated.

    You have to face the same dilemma across all interactional channels; you just have to face it in different ways. You need to detect specifically whom you’re interacting with, because if you don’t know that individual, it’s almost impossible to be relevant.

    The post The Four Essential Truths Of Real-Time Customer Engagement: The First Truth appeared first on Teradata Applications.

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