Strong B2B CX relies on the extraction of insight from customer data


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The ability to deliver a first-class customer experience grows more important by the day. There is more competition than before, and customers have so much choice that if the CX doesn’t match their expectations, they can easily and painlessly take their business elsewhere.

This is something that B2C organizations know only too well, but the truth is that it applies just as much to B2B as it does in B2C. I’m not suggesting this is something you do in your organization, but it’s easier to be more complacent about CX in B2B. Yet the consequences of such complacency can be huge.

Focusing on the customer
Being a customer-centric organization sounds obvious – what company wouldn’t be focused on customers and their requirements? But it can be overlooked. Doing so is a major oversight, as every organization needs to be customer-centric to thrive in modern business.

But the sheer volume and breadth of data that comes from interactions between organizations and their customers can be overwhelming. How can they manage this data and use it to deliver a first-class customer experience? The way for organizations to achieve this is via the extraction of actionable insight from that data.

However, their data is siloed and/or unstructured for many organizations, making it harder to manage and analyze. This is true even for a CRM system as powerful as Salesforce. This is one of the world’s leading CRM platforms but is mainly used to work with structured data.

For an organization to become truly customer-centric, it needs to look at the unstructured data – the emails, call records, external news reports, and more – that hold the real insight.

Unlocking the insight within unstructured data
The key to providing a powerful CX is dependent on organizations unlocking the insight found within unstructured data. And this requires the right platform to do so.

Armacell is the inventor of flexible foam for equipment insulation and one of the world’s leading providers of engineered foams. It held extensive customer data in Salesforce but needed to turn it into valuable insights that changed the way it makes decisions and allowed it to adopt a more customer-orientated approach.

It needed to connect all the different sources of information and data within the organization. Not only would this mean it could identify opportunities and be agile enough to make the most of them, but it also meant it could start tapping into broader industry trends and anticipating customer requirements, and keeping aware of places where it wouldn’t ordinarily see a threat and detecting any trends, first moves, and new opportunities.

Working with a Squirro application, instead of Armacell’s account managers spending hours and hours poring over data in an attempt to gain insight, the insight was now presented directly to them. Teams could benefit from a 360-degree view of a particular customer, outlining every interaction that has taken place. This includes quality of relationship analysis and sentiment analysis, which results in deeper and more intimate customer insights.

Increased customer satisfaction
There is also a Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats (SWOT) option each day so that account managers can have current and meaningful conversations with those customers. Information is presented visually, in a graph or map, so it is easy to spot trends and patterns, and opportunities are not missed.

This approach substantially impacted Armacell, which used the insight to increase customer satisfaction. Their solution also features sentiment analysis, so account managers could look at all instances of positive or negative activity – presented in simple graphs and visualizations – and use that insight to address issues or maximize opportunities.

Good CX is just as relevant in B2B as B2C, and it relies on organizations extracting actionable insight from unstructured data. This enables you to anticipate trends and opportunities and have more meaningful conversations with customers – qualities very much at the heart of successful B2B CX.

Dorian Selz, Dr
Dr. Dorian Selz is co-founder and CEO of augmented intelligence solution provider Squirro. A seasoned entrepreneur, before Squirro he founded the Swiss search platform and made it the market leader in four years.


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