Analytics to Predict Customer Behavior

August 27, 2014 in Big Data, Business Analytics

For 60 years, marketers have been building products that anticipate the needs of consumers. The difference now is that we have the data and tools to understand these needs in various contexts. Customers have been segmented by groups for more than 10 years, but Big Data allows us to classify individual customer needs and act in real time.

In order to get all the information, you should focus on big data rather than your customers. When it comes to understanding and predicting consumer behavior, your big data analytics reports will have better answers than your customers. That’s for sure.

Predicting customer behavior can make your life less stressful by seeing trends ahead of time that you can prepare for, can make customers feel attended to by having customized options or recommendations, and is most likely something you can implement to start out with using your existing data even if you’re not doing it yet.

Google Now’s Google Cards are a great example of how data is already being used to understand customers’ needs before they search. Google Cards works on Android phones to search existing user content, in addition to other data patterns including geographic location, to anticipate what the user will need.

Most companies already have what they need, but they’re either not capturing it or aren’t using it in the correct way. Businesses have access to customer behavior data as well as social and transactional data. This gives them the tools to understand their customers on a much deeper level.

It reminds me a complete Big Data ecosystem that we have implementation for a large toy and game manufacturer enabling them with improved understanding of customer preferences and buying habits. Read more…http://www.bodhtree.com/analytics-predict-customer-behavior.php

Now, who said a good business couldn’t get better?

Success mantras for new-age CMO

August 20, 2014 in Business Analytics

The Future of marketing with respect to digitization and the complexity of analytics that are required to make sense of the data are already dominating our lives. A number of examples come to mind when I think of how the art of classic marketing is changing with time and transforming itself to leverage technologies and drive a clear business benefit as well as customer engagement.

My Favorite example is one of the early engagements that Starbucks launched online called “My Starbucks Idea”. It was a continuous engagement for co creation where customers and prospects propose ideas for new products, packaging, marketing etc. These are rated by others and best ones are awarded as well as the company uses them to transform business.

Changing customer behavior has made CMO’s role much more diverse. Marketing, in its new avatar, focuses on developing customer relationships and encouraging inter-personal or reference based promotion. Hence, customer information management, segmentation, digital and analytics have emerged as the key focus areas for marketers. Technology helps them identify prospective customers and build relationships with them. At another level, technology is increasingly creating the fear of being left behind in the marketers’ mind.

Nasscom defined six successful mantras for new age CMO

  1. Develop a technology mindset – Don’t get sucked into the technology- vs-creativity vortex. It’s now technology + creativity. Technology is a powerful enabler of larger business benefits. A new-age marketer is tech-friendly.
  2. Leverage your own CIO - Marketers today have a deep understanding of technology’s role in marketing, but lack the skills to access it. Engage in healthy and regular interactions with your CIO and his technology network with an open, positive mindset.
  3. Really understand your consumers’ technology needs – Today, there are a plethora of new-age technologies to choose from. Precise insights into your consumers’ need should guide which ones you choose.
  4. Take baby steps before the sprint- Invest in technology by all means, but with a bit of caution. Start with small, yet focused initiatives before investing in larger marketing systems.
  5. Can they walk the talk? Most agencies have a tendency to promise and project much more than what they can actually deliver. Take these claims with a pinch of salt and keep an eye out for the new breed of agencies that have a deep understanding of how technology & creativity merge.
  6. Be a keen observer of the technology landscape- Innovative technologies like mobile, analytics and personalization are fuelling the development of new-age applications and devices. Identify industry-specific frameworks and applications that can be calibrated to enable easy and efficient deployment.

How Big Data and Analytics Can Reshape Healthcare

August 12, 2014 in Big Data

In a bid to deliver high quality healthcare care and improve patient satisfaction, public and private sector hospitals are today looking at streamlining workflow processes, integrating healthcare related data and securing information exchange. Like many developing nations, India too is exploring all ways and means in providing good, cost effective healthcare to its citizens. In doing so, healthcare organizations are increasingly realizing that IT solutions can actually help them meet this challenge by optimizing resource allocation and plugging inefficiencies that cause delay in treatment. One of the technology solutions that can be leverage quite effectively by healthcare organizations is big data analytics which can go a long way in reducing the cost of healthcare care and improving patient outcomes which in turn could pave the way for a new age in healthcare.

The data resides in multiple places like individual EMRs, lab and imaging systems, physician notes, medical correspondence, claims, CRM systems and finance. Getting access to this valuable data and factoring it into clinical and advanced analytics is critical to improving care and outcomes, incentivizing the right behavior and driving efficiencies.

 

Today, a significant proportion of the cost and time spent in the drug development process is attributable to unsuccessful formulations. By enabling researchers to identify compounds with a higher likelihood of success, Big Data can help reduce the cost and the time to market for new drugs. Also, by integrating learning from clinical data into the early stages of development, researchers will now be able to customize drugs to suit aggregated patient profiles.   Currently, information privacy concerns are the single biggest obstacle to Big Data adoption in healthcare. Another is the absence of an analytics solution powerful enough to gather massive volumes of largely unstructured health data, perform complex analyses quickly, and trigger meaningful – read life-saving – action in real-time; a solution that could, for instance, gather all the data from ICU monitors which today goes un-stored, put it on the Cloud, decipher significant medical patterns that are yet undiscovered, and trigger a medical action instead of merely an alarm.

 

Some of the ways in which healthcare vertical could leverage big data and analytics for providing high quality of patient care both for inpatients and outpatients.

-           Remote patient monitoring

-           Tapping into clinical and genomics research data for personalized treatments

-           Build sustainable healthcare systems

-           Collaborate to improve care and outcomes

-           Increase access to healthcare

 

No-where is the transformative power of big data analytics more meaningful than in the health care sector. The need is to identify the potential that big data analytics holds in itself to transform the way healthcare vertical has been traditionally responding to the patients needs, so far.

Businesses are making enormous investments in big data initiatives

August 5, 2014 in Big Data, Business Analytics

As per Gartner the cumulative big data spending for the period 2011 through 2016 will reach over $232 billion. As of 2013 nearly two thirds of organizations have invested, or expect to invest, in big data technology in the next 24 months.

The topmost big data concerns of these organizations are:

• Improving customer experience

• Improving process efficiency

• Getting value from big data

After knowing these facts i was curious to know how Government organisations are getting benefitted by Big Data. While reading through some of the articles on the web I found an interesting piece of information that talks about how “Big Data analytics can help Beijing cut through the smog”. To tackle the air pollution problem China government has implemented new policies and laws such as the Beijing Air Pollution Control Regulations that provide guidance to technology vendors developing smog control solutions.

The city wants to show the source of pollutants and how they will disperse across Beijing a couple of days in advance — but that doesn’t do anything to reduce the smog itself. Rather, the key to reducing air pollution is changing how China consumes energy.

Government could use big data analytics to:

Optimize factories’ energy consumption. Asset-intensive industries like steel, cement, and chemicals face challenges in analysing the vast amounts of data generated by energy-monitoring sensors and devices.

Predict the amount of available renewable energy. The two largest suppliers of electrical power, State Grid and China Southern Grid, are prioritizing the development of alternative energy sources, especially renewables like wind and solar.

Bodhtree & Salesforce are bringing new level of innovation for Cement companies

July 30, 2014 in Cloud services

India is the second largest producer of cement in the world; globally renowned cement companies operate in India through local group of companies. A heavy investment by large cement manufacturers in expansion or inviting FDI in Indian companies shows it is among the best cement markets in Asia. Doubling its manufacturing capacity by 2025 and scaling new heights with an investment of close to US $ 50.1 Billion.

With such a huge market, it places enormous pressure on sales reps by their respective companies to tap their share of pie. Today sales engines at Cement companies are looking at adopting technology innovation to accelerate their sales and improve dealer network.

Bodhtree, a Salesforce partner in India is helping cement companies to adapt Cloud CRM to achieve best of Sales automation and improve dealer network. Some of the tactical business challenges faced by cement companies are poor visibility into customer and business performance, collaboration between departments, no proper reporting and analytics, poor dealer network, no mobile and offline support to sales reps on the field etc. The dynamics of trade and no-trade barriers are bound to change over the time. Companies are aligning technical teams as a separate entity to generate business. They require a robust sales automation to track and monitor the entire sales cycle. Unlike the other micro verticals, dealer network and retailers play a crucial role in cement business.

 

Bodhtree helped a large cement company in India which has 40,000 customer touch points daily. With Salesforce CRM cement companies are bound to engage with new customers in a whole new way. Bodhtree’s Solution is helping companies to adopt Cloud CRM and empower sales reps, Managers and Dealers to improve sales with great transparency. Each size of the company has their own set of business problems. Recently we have unplugged some of the biggest challenges for a largest cement company in South India. Our solution has reengineered their sales and aligned them to their sales vision. Sales reps are fully empowered with mobile devices; they can access the dealer information on the fly, they can view order info, credit limit, and competitor analysis on their mobile devices. While dealers are fully connected with the sales reps there is a complete visibility into the dealer network, sales cycle, trade and non-trade channels etc. This is a greater testimony as how age old cement companies are turning to Cloud CRM to save cost, improve sales and expand their market share. Truly, Bodhtree and Salesforce.com CRM are bringing new level of innovation for Cement companies in India.

The customer Analytics & segmentation are the key drivers today to retain online customers on B2C portals

July 23, 2014 in Big Data, Business Analytics

The changing landscape of BI is truly attributed to new generation analytics to understand customer behavior and segment them based on defined parameters. The role of OLAP and OLTP in a large scale enterprise where customer data & transactions are incessant to emergence of new generation analytics to customer behavior has changed the entire landscape of BI ecosystem.

Bodhtree has provided various Analytical solutions to global customers for more than a decade. We have expanded our Analytical solutions to new domains and meeting the demands of our customers to enable them so that they understand their customers and increase customer lifetime value. Today it’s all about creating differentiators and out- of- the box thinking. We would like to share our experience in implementing a simple yet an innovative Analytical solution to a leading conglomerate for their renowned international cricket portal. The objective is to provide accurate data to the visitors using robust technology.

Business Challenges                                               

The portal has a million visitors every day, they had experienced drop in traffic. The conventional approach by using analytical tools had failed either to know the customer behavior or increase traffic. The big question is ‘how to trigger interest and engage visitors’ for a longer period of time on the portal.

 

Solution                                                                                      

The Analytical team at Bodhtree have understood the business challenges and provided a solution that displayed live updates and stats (Nuggets). We understood the web traffic and what information the visitors are looking at the portal and accordingly provided a web-service to insert all the nuggets before the match starts and also during the match in- progress. Web-service interacts with JSON and MySQL to generate a nugget. We predominately used ‘R’ language.

 

Benefits

With our solution, real time updates and stats are possible. This is demarcated by match and player. A Player performance analysis and historical trending is available for visitors. The traffic has significantly increased after incorporating the new features. Now the company is in a position to forecast the future traffic, segment and understand the visitor’s behavior.

World’s Largest PC Company increased customer lifetime value with Tableau

July 15, 2014 in Big Data, Business Analytics

Today, business analytics have transformed to track, understand and monitor customer behavior. The challenge is to procure most granular details across the regions in the form of dashboards to interpret and understand customer lifetime value. Designing effective dashboards is a challenge of design, usability and efficient insights. Today organizations are looking at increasing customer lifetime value and at the same time invest wisely.

In the recent times, Our BI experts had helped a no.1 Global PC company, to increase their customer lifetime value by leveraging Tableau.

Business Challenges

The business challenges faced by the company were increasing customer lifetime value, formulate customer experience strategy & sell more content: impact multi-platform ownership, content consumption mix and frequency. Invest wisely in customer acquisitions & retention, channels, products & content engagement. They do have a mature BI landscape but data was trapped, not trusted, not intuitive to interact and data is hidden. They needed to understand as how they can benefit from Big Data enablement within their organization.

Solution & Benefits

Bodhtree’s BI experts had leveraged the functionality of Tableau dashboards that offered a descriptive and statistical metrics and helped in creation of segmentation model to predict customer behavior. As a part of our solutions we created Hadoop infrastructure internally and configured the Tableau infrastructure in a secured manner. We prepared the data using HIVE and created Meta models to reports on the sales data. Further we have come up with eight dashboards showing both the leading and lagging performance indicators across the regions and time periods.

Thanks to the functionality of Tableau dashboards that offered a descriptive and statistical metrics and helped in creation of segmentation model to predict customer behavior. As a part of our solution we created Hadoop infrastructure internally at the client’s end along with the R-Lang infrastructure. We also have evaluated, installed and configured the Tableau infrastructure in secured manner. Additionally prepared the data using HIVE and created Meta models to reports on the sales data. Further we created 8 dashboards showing both the leading and lagging indicators across regions and time periods.

Our solution not only compliments their business model, but also empowers their team to generate business performance reports from real time transactional data using Tableau. Data Infrastructure enables the business users to perform their own analysis and find insights in the data. Predictive models are deployed in a fashion where the business users are able to quickly see the trends and projections.

At the end of this pilot our customer was delighted to visualize his business performance in the form of metrics and KPI’s (customer lifetime value, ARPU, drop rate, retention rate, tie ratio) and has decided to work with us to formulate a Big Data strategy to increase customer lifetime value and customer experience strategy.

If you would like to know more about our BI services or share your experience, write to us at business@bodhtree.com.

HADOOP’S MOMENTUM IS UNSTOPPABLE

July 7, 2014 in Business Analytics

Divide and conquer: That’s the simple truth of Hadoop. At its core, Hadoop is a distributed file system and distributed MapReduce processing framework that both stores and processes data by dividing workloads across three, five, or thousands of servers. Forrester defines a big data Hadoop solution as:

A distributed data platform that includes, extends, and augments Apache Hadoop (Common, HDFS, YARN, MapReduce) as a core component of the solution, supports Hadoop-related projects, and adds differentiated features that make it attractive to enterprises.

Hadoop is unstoppable as its open source roots grow wildly and deeply into enterprise data management architectures. Its refreshingly unique approach to data management is transforming how companies store, process, analyze, and share data of any size and structure. Forrester believes that Hadoop is a must-have data platform for large enterprises, forming the cornerstone of any flexible future data management platform.1 if you have lots of structured, unstructured, and/or binary data, there is a sweet spot for Hadoop in your organization.

Hadoop Is a solution to the problem Of Big Data

In a recent Forrester survey, technology executives and decision-makers ranked data-related projects at the top of their list for importance and investment.2 Why? Companies seek deeper insights from the massive amount of structured, unstructured, semistructured, and binary data at their disposal in order to dramatically improve business outcomes. Hadoop can help here by:

Capturing and storing all data for all business functions. Most firms estimate that they are only analyzing 12% of the data that they already have, leaving 88% of it on the cutting-room floor.3 Repressive data silos and a lack of analytics capabilities are key reasons for this.

Supporting advanced analytics capabilities. Traditional business intelligence (BI) tools can benefit from big data, but firms also want to use advanced visualization tools and predictive analytics to explore data in new ways and discover new patterns.

Sharing customer data quickly and generously with all those who need it. Organizations can use big data to dramatically improve virtually every function of the business, including product research, design, and development; advertising and marketing management; sales; and the customer experience

Continuously accommodating greater data volumes and new data sources. Your internal   applications as well as public sources like social media, mobile platforms, and data services are generating an onslaught of new data.

Best Practices for Securing Hadoop

June 30, 2014 in Big Data

Historically, Apache Hadoop has provided limited security capabilities, and most Hadoop implementations to date have been deployed with little thought given to security. To protect sensitive data being stored and analyzed in Hadoop, security architects should use a structured approach to security as recommended in one of Gartner’s recent research report.                                                           

Take a Life Cycle Approach to Securing Data in Hadoop

Data has a life cycle within an organization. It is typically created within enterprise systems, and during its life cycle, it may go into and out of Hadoop and other big data repositories, as well as into backup and archival systems. Viewed in this way, the Hadoop protection strategy cannot be limited to the protection of only the data within Hadoop discussed thus far.

A best practice is to take a data life-cycle-centric approach to the security within Hadoop that considers these issues:

  • How and when is data loaded into Hadoop? Which users, groups and systems have rights to do this? If the data loads are programmatic, what controls (such as certificate-based authentication) protect programmatic access? What steps are taken to ensure the integrity and authenticity of the data being loaded?
  • If sensitive data is loaded, has it been anonymized where necessary?
  • Are end-user or automated extracts from Hadoop prevented? Or, if allowed, how is the extracted data protected? At a minimum, these activities should be logged using DAP solutions described in this research.
  • Is data backed up from Hadoop? Is so, are these backups encrypted? Who has access to the backups?
  • Is data archived from Hadoop? If so, how are these archives protected?

Learn more about what’s new with Big Data and visit the Bodhtree’s Resource Center for more info.

How a leading real estate firm transformed its customer experience strategy with Salesforce’s service cloud

June 17, 2014 in Cloud services

Henry Ford once said, “a business absolutely devoted to service will have only one worry about -profits. They will be embarrassingly large”. It may sound a little simplistic but there is certainly a truth behind this observation.

Good customer service is the lifeblood of any business or organization.

This reminds us about our recent Salesforce implementation for a leading real estate firm. The company had outgrown their customer service support system and needed a solution that would take their call tracking to a next level. They wanted to streamline their sales and marketing processes, optimize ticket management and enhance the efficiency of their customer support team to provide excellent customer experience.

Customer service team was assigned with customer queries and other issues related to payment status and status of particular project documents. The sales team would track number of inquiries and sales conversions in order to measure their performance whereas the customer service team required real time reports to monitor the number of calls attended by the agents, number of issues resolved and the issue resolution time.

Having in-depth experience in deploying customized Salesforce Service Cloud, Bodhtree’s service cloud experts understand the critical success factors in enhancing revenue generation with a customer experience strategy. We helped several customers in deploying Service Cloud, which allowed them to provide revolutionary customer service from anywhere, anytime and on any device. In fact, Service Cloud enables you to embed one-touch service directly into products. Your customer service agents can be fully empowered by Service Cloud.

Some of the benefits they enjoyed

1. Healthy Competition & Real time visibility – Multiple queues can be viewed at once, so there is a healthy competition between agents to resolve their cases faster

2. Increased Collaboration – With Chatter, agents can quickly escalate cases to experts to provide accurate solutions and close them faster

3. Knowledge & custom dashboards – Quickly search your knowledge base for relevant answers. Or make it easy for customers to do it themselves. View customized reports to increase performance efficiency

Yes, it’s a new world out there, and we expect to see many more organizations dramatically reshaping their sales, marketing and customer support functions like this real estate firm did.