Two weeks ago I attended the Customer Insight & Analytics Exchange in London, in which I participated as a speaker. See Maz Iqbal's account of these two days here:
One of my personal highlights from day 1 was Suresh Vittal's presentation (Forrester). He distuingished three stages of maturity towards customer-centricity in today's organisations: (1) Functional intelligence (2) Marketing Intelligence and (3) Strategic intelligence.
According to his research the first group accounts for the largest part (54%). Silo's are common in these organisations and data-based insights are delivered on an ad-hoc basis. About a third of organisations fall in the second category (34%). They are characterized by bringing structured and unstructured information together. Qualitative and quantitative data are used jointly in some analyses and decisions, but not in a recurrent or automated fashion. Finally, only 12% of the organisation are customer-focused, learning organisations that actively manage interactions across all touchpoints.
Interesting, but not surprising, about the last category is that these organisations are more technology-driven, and have found a way to structure and automate the delivery of insight.
And this is why, according to me, BI is hot again in Marketing.
Enabling a broad user group to explore customer behavior, customer satisfaction and the outcome of marketing interactions by means of visually intuitive and interactive tools is a necessary condition to challenge the status quo and stimulate innovation in larger companies. Add collaboration and a managed innovation process on top, and an important milestone agile marketing is taken.
It's clear but not easy - as Maz describes on his blog:
"there is huge gulf between the theoreticians and the practitioners. The theoreticians – analyst, technology vendors – make even the most complex sound so easy. The practitioners are finding it difficult to get even the simpler stuff done. One practitioner summed it up nicely when she stated that whilst it sounds easy, it is anything but easy to generate useful actionable insight and get this acted upon effectively and rapidly by the various players in the organisation who have their own agendas/priorities. "
Couldn't agree more.