Marketing departments are experiencing ballooning pressure to deliver profits in today’s “Age of the Customer,” where consumers’ tastes and subsequent shopping behaviors evolve as quickly as the online outlets available for them to peruse products and services.
Staying Two Steps Ahead of the Customer
It’s imperative for marketers to be able to visualize customer data to stay ahead of these increasingly common changes in behavior. That’s according to a new research report from Aberdeen Group, which notes that marketers who use interactive visualization tools are 78 percent more likely to improve the speed of decision-making than those not using the tools.
“Interactive visualization provides ways to slice and dice data in order to better understand a certain segment of customers,” according to the report. “This is opposed to static visualization, which often includes prepackaged spreadsheets or reports with flat images and minimal available underlying data.”
According to Aberdeen’s survey of 101 marketers, 34 percent use data visualization, which may include data collection, data validation, and quality control; integration with other tools like databases; and simulation of marketing data in a visualization tool.
Tools are Tied to User Engagement
These tools empower users to generate clusters, maps, or diagrams so marketers can identify and target customer segments with similar behaviors. The report also finds that marketers who adopt interactive visualization forge stronger user engagement.
Moreover, a recent article in McKinsey & Co.’s McKinsey Quarterly details the ways in which senior executives from companies including AIG, American Express, Samsung Mobile, Siemens Healthcare, TD Bank, and Wal-Mart Stores believe visualizing data with analytics could help their businesses.
Retailers tap data visualization to identify opportunities to cross-sell consumers and optimize locations for new stores or map product flow through supply chains. Insurers could use data analytics to predict features that will help them expand product lines and pinpoint emerging areas of risk.
“Companies need to operate along two horizons: capturing quick wins to build momentum, while keeping sight of longer-term, groundbreaking applications,” McKinsey notes. “Many believed that the real prize lies in reimagining existing businesses or launching entirely new ones based on the data companies possess.”