Analysts often say uncovering customer insights is like finding a needle in a haystack. However, customer data can’t be burned or blown away—as many inventive haystack conquering solutions suggest. Customer data has to be thoughtfully organized and cared for no matter from where it stems.
Organizing your data haystack
Many companies have started to look for ways to harmonize diverse data sources by feeding them into cohesive analytics programs which help provide tailored datasets and custom support metrics at the press of a button.
In 2014, ESL Education, the international language specialists, had disparate customer data in its CRM, accounting system, and various in-house tools. According to Clément Duay, ESL’s assistant product director and business analyst, it was difficult for any analyst or employee to mix data on the fly, learn from their analysis, and answer a customer problem,
Before ESL Education could even begin to uncover customer insights, they had to break down these data silos. They did so by making the move to a business intelligence tool that would allow for more advanced analysis, bypassing the need for a data warehouse.
“This move not only enabled us to access all our customer data in a structured manner, it also gave us all the freedom to perform the customer analyses we wanted to do—in a product that’s easy for anyone to use,” Duay said.
Finding the needles
Paul Bugryniec, head of business intelligence at Miniclip, followed a similar path as Duay, in his pursuit to organize and aggregate customer data to better understand how their gamers buy and use their products.
But for Miniclip, the analyses each department wanted to do was different. The product team was interested in gaming behavior. The marketing team was interested in how their online ads drove purchases, while their community team wanted to analyze all social engagement.
To help each department find the customer insights they were looking for, Bugryniec gathered key departmental stakeholders to assess what metrics each wished to track and how they wanted to consume the data. From there, Bugryniec and his team created a central place for everyone to access core business metrics that mattered most.
“We are now collecting data and measuring the numbers we want,” Bugryniec said. “We’re going to get more granular to dive deeper into our business drivers and start being more proactive in how we handle churn.”
The right tools for the job
Organizing data and performing relevant analyses has been traditionally difficult because of restrictions many analytics tools place on its users—making customer data inaccessible to most within an organization. But this is quickly changing, according to Nicolas Raspal, CTO of Analytics at Zendesk.
“Honestly, it does not matter what strategy or architecture you decide to take, as long as it’s one that makes data open and more accessible,” Raspal said. “It does not matter if you use a private cloud built around a single data center or a public one such as Google or Amazon. What really matters is finding the right mix of tools for your business and the people who want to access the data.”
To learn more about how to organize, analyze, and take action on your customer data, check out Zendesk Explore and sign up for early access.