Most consumer businesses contend with a tremendously difficult competitive environment. Consumers have more options and information than ever before. As a result, they can switch vendors easily. Consumers are also overloaded with marketing messages, so ineffective direct advertising can be worse than no advertising at all.
Fortunately, new software tools and applications have emerged over the last few years that enable business owners to employ actionable, analytically driven decisions to improve targeted marketing, increase sales, and create a superior customer experience.
Actionable analytics is not a report or dashboard, or "business intelligence," neither is it a "rearview mirror." Rather, it drives decision management forward. Following is an outline of an actionable analytics process:
1. Software automatically mines customer data to predict future customer behavior.
2. You define personalized actions, or a "decision strategy," for marketing campaigns or customer service through your different channels of customer interaction.
3. A forecast of expected results of your decision strategy is presented for your review.
4. When you’re happy with your decision strategy, it can be automatically put into production across all your customer interaction channels.
5. The software continuously monitors results and enables you to adjust and improve.
In the past, large companies like Amazon (
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