We live in a digital era. In today’s business ecosystem, most marketers already struggle to keep up with the torrent of data that websites, CRM, email, and mobile apps capture about their customers. The challenge will only worsen as the Internet of Things (IoT) continues to proliferate consumers’ lives and bring with it a deluge of additional data as billions of new devices and sensors are deployed globally.
According to research by IDC, the average connected person will interact with a connected device 4,800 times per day. Despite the myriad of new challenges that are being brought upon by IoT, there is also plenty to for them to gain. IoT gives marketers in certain industries, such as energy and healthcare, the first direct information they’ve ever had from their customers, and in other cases IoT enriches existing customer profiles.
Overall, IoT will be able to generate an unimaginable amount of data, which in turn creates new opportunities to interact with customers based on real-time insights on their preferences and needs.
Here are four potential tips by Tom Treanor, Global Head of Marketing at Arm Treasure Data on marketers can form deeper connections with customers by leveraging IoT data:
- Data-driven customer insights: By analysing IoT data, marketers are able to gain an understanding of how their customers behave, spot product problems or opportunities and identify areas where greater customer support is needed. Based on the insights gleaned, companies can personalise their approach, such as recommending a complementary product or service for an existing customer or offering an incentive to a potential new customer. To gain these insights, companies need to convert raw IoT data streams into useable events through parsing, classification and tagging.
- Combine data sources to learn more: By combining IoT data with data from other, often digital sources, marketers can gain information that isn’t visible in isolation. A runner’s behaviour as captured in a fitness tracker combined with their shoe purchase history can provide valuable insights into when they may need new shoes. A smart thermostat reading compared to outside temperatures could help identify customers who might need upgraded insulation or new windows. By linking vast amounts of IoT data, companies can gain unprecedented insights into their customers.
- Connect with customers through devices: Many IoT devices provide an opportunity to communicate directly with customers. This can include recommendations for getting better results from a product or ways to upgrade. Understanding what information to share and when is crucial though. Marketers can gain this understanding by connecting data from the IoT device to a marketing system that can combine it with other information, apply appropriate selection rules, and draw from a library of approved content.
- Leverage IoT to expand your reach: IoT data can also contribute to communications through other channels by helping to uncover customer needs or interests. This is only possible if the IoT data is combined with other customer data in a unified database and then shared with other marketing systems. This makes it possible for the data to then be leveraged in other forms such as through email or social media campaigns.
Organisations that are able to overcome the huge challenges that IoT brings to the table, will be able to unlock the insights found in this data can obtain new possibilities for understanding and interacting with customers. This makes it worth the additional effort required to capture IoT data and convert it into formats that marketers can use.