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Here in Asia we are on the cusp of an explosion in the use of artificial intelligence (AI) for business applications. Whilst most companies already leverage analytics for a wide range of functions, powerful tool that leverage AI are already available which have the potential to transform customer intelligence and the way we work.
Yet as with all new technologies there also comes a lot of hype about what is possible. So to help demystify this topic, we contacted the experts at SAS, IDC and OCBC Bank to learn, not only how AI will revolutionise customer intelligence, but also what organisations need to do to effectively incorporate AI into their business processes.
Customer Intelligence and Analytics Today
In the current disruptive business environment, markets have become saturated and ultra-competitive, meaning that organisations cannot expect to succeed based on their current products, services or even price. Instead, organisations need to differentiate themselves with outstanding customer experiences by truly know their customers and by providing a consistent experience across all channels.
As a result of these trends, according to research by IDC, transformation that focuses on enhancing the customer experience has become the crux of enterprise digital strategy in Asia Pacific. However, enhancing the customer experience requires better customer intelligence and it is here that the core challenge lies. Whilst the quantity and varieties of data being captured by enterprises is growing exponentially, the ability to scale existing enterprise analytics capabilities to derive actionable insights from that data is limited.
Several reasons for this exist including data silos, unstructured data and that in many organisations, analytics has largely remained the responsibility of a single department of highly trained staff conducting lab work. Consequently, as the customer journey has become more complex, organisations have not been able to identify or respond to customer activity with sufficient speed or relevance, often leading to negative customer experiences rather than positive ones.
But this is all about to change thanks new machine learning and data mining techniques which can be applied to structured and unstructured data. According to Chwee Chua, VP Big Data Analytics & Cognitive/AI Computing Practice at IDC Asia Pacific:
"The latest technology incorporates near-real-time ingestion of data using advanced machine learning models to deliver highly personalised customer engagements. Some of the most common applications are for marketing, customer loyalty, cross-selling or up-selling actions. Businesses will be able to increase insights and predict customer behaviour in shorter cycles. This enhanced customer intelligence will be applied to relevant touch points, consequently improving the customer experience, brand perception and loyalty."
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