Marketing, customer satisfaction and loyalty
Satisfied customers will follow you everywhere
An interesting example of nudge applied to public safety in Ísafjörður, Iceland
Oct09

An interesting example of nudge applied to public safety in Ísafjörður, Iceland

I’ve developed an interest for the study of nudges after reading the book by Dan Ariely. Nudges can be considered a sub-discipline of behavioral economics (founded by George Lowenstein) and already wrote about it on this blog (see one example here). To define a “nudge” using my own words, I’d say it’s a design that leads a person towards a particular action. That action should be beneficial for the...

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Market research : hot technological trends for future TV experience
Sep25

Market research : hot technological trends for future TV experience

The IBC fair in Amsterdam drives a lot of smart minds together. A lot of market research firms are present to discuss market trends and evolution. This year a debate (“Hot or not: What are the hottest new TV technologies and devices and how will they transform the TV market?“) was specifically dedicated to technological trends that are likely to change the customer experience. Voice recognition was voted the most...

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Dynamic pricing : natural marketing evolution or threat ?
Sep04

Dynamic pricing : natural marketing evolution or threat ?

In a recent article the Guardian recalled the story of John Wanamaker who revolutionized retail by inventing “fixed prices”. As incredible as it may seem, until 1861 prices were set according to the rule of thumb and the perception left by the customer on the salesman. If the latter felt you had money, you’d be charged more than someone else he felt would be poorer. The “one price for all” rule seems...

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RecSys 2017 conference on algorithmic recommendation has started
Aug27

RecSys 2017 conference on algorithmic recommendation has started

I’m on my way to the RecSys 2017 conference, a conference opened to academic researchers and practitioners working on algorithmic recommendations. Such algorithms are widely used on websites to help users find they way and get a better user experience. Search engines are actually very complex recommendation engines that help you find the right content depending on where you are located, what you have liked before. We have...

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How Big Data will influence the future of advertising
Jul25

How Big Data will influence the future of advertising

“What is the impact of Big Data on online advertising” is the question I was asked to answer on the occasion of an EGTA ((European Group of Television Advertising) workshop that took place on 29 and 30 June 2017 in Brussels (my thanks to Yuri Loburets for his kind invitation to speak). Rather than repeating the same clichés about Big Data again and again I chose to put advertising and Big Data back in a historical...

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Defining an ethical framework for collecting, analyzing, and exploiting personal data
Jul05

Defining an ethical framework for collecting, analyzing, and exploiting personal data

After our meetup on Big Data and Ethics at DigitYser we held an executive Lunch with Michael Ekstrand to discuss some important, yet emerging issues related to current practices around data. All participants were obviously mainly interested in dealing with how ethics will affect those practices and we agreed with Philippe Van Impe and Geert Verstraeten that we will address this topic in the upcoming data bootcamp organized by...

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The right to failure doesn’t exist with artificial intelligence. This is terrible.
Jun26

The right to failure doesn’t exist with artificial intelligence. This is terrible.

Artificial intelligence, algorithms based on machine learning, have turned our lives into one of efficiency where failure doesn’t exist anymore. For algorithms an error doesn’t exist ; it’s just a prediction that hasn’t worked because of missing data points. This statistical “accident” will be taken into account to improve predictions a step further. In the field of algorithmic governance failure is...

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Big Data and Ethics : first sucessful meetup at DigitYser in Brussels
Jun21

Big Data and Ethics : first sucessful meetup at DigitYser in Brussels

On 15 June 2017 my friend Philippe Van Impe gave me the opportunity to organize the first meetup in his newly opened Big Data temple in Brussels : DigitYser. And what a success ! The topic of this first Meetup at DigitYser was “Big Data and ethics“, an important topic in data science yet insufficiently covered. The idea for this meetup popped up during my talk at the Data Innovation Summit where people started tweeting...

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GDPR : what does data portability really mean ?
Jun14

GDPR : what does data portability really mean ?

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) enforces the concept of data portability. What it means remains however opaque for most of us as the concept behind data portability can’t be easily applied and doesn’t really correspond to any expressed or latent consumer’s needs. Portability : a game changer for many industries, pushed by the European Commission The concept of portability is at the heart of the action...

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Allianz mobile app for connected car insurance hooks prospective customers
May31

Allianz mobile app for connected car insurance hooks prospective customers

Transforming leads into clients is a challenge for most companies and the heart of the sales process. What if leads could convert themselves into customers ? In that perspective the initiative of Allianz in the field of “connected insurance” is very clever. The promise of “connected car insurances” is to obtain a discount depending on how well you drive. Allianz gives up to 30% discount for good drivers. A...

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New Twitter conditions give you a glimpse into how and which personal data collected
May29

New Twitter conditions give you a glimpse into how and which personal data collected

On 20 May 2017 Twitter sent an email to its users announcing that new terms and conditions apply. These changes largely apply to data usage, personalization and targeted advertising. One can’t really say it’s a revolution, but at least it’s a first step towards more transparency (something much needed in the field of Big Data). And the new privacy parameters give you an idea of how the personalization algorithms of...

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Personalized car insurance has unexpected effects on customers behaviors
May24

Personalized car insurance has unexpected effects on customers behaviors

A recent article in a French magazine sheds light on progresses made by insurance company Allianz in the field of personalized car insurance. Like many other firms in the field, Allianz believes in the usefulness of telematic units (black boxes) to monitor drivers’ behaviors and better evaluate risks. 20000 customers of Allianz have already opted in France; a rather small number that reflects the risks perceived by customers (as...

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Youtube recommendations : user experience and algorithmes better than ever
May15

Youtube recommendations : user experience and algorithmes better than ever

If you are addicated to YouTube, chances are high their recommendation systems play an important role in your addiction. Our deep interest in recommendation engines and algorithms makes us naturally gravitate towards the YouTube app to assess their latest developments. And the least we can say is that the latest version of their recommendation algorithm is extremely good and likely to trigger addiction among users. How YouTube...

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Interview of Edward Vizard on implementing Pay-What-You-Want at Garçonne & Chérubin
Apr12

Interview of Edward Vizard on implementing Pay-What-You-Want at Garçonne & Chérubin

A few weeks ago we discussed an interesting, yet rather unusual, pricing scheme in the retail sector applied by e-merchant Garçonne & Cherubin : the Pay-What-You-Want system. We discuss today the experience of Edward Vizard, founder of Garçonne & Chérubin, on this pricing scheme. IntoTheMinds: How did you come up with the idea of ​​making a Pay-What-You-Want system? Edward Vizard : Being of British origin and particularly...

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Ford builds trust and satisfaction with the Ford video check
Apr10

Ford builds trust and satisfaction with the Ford video check

Ford is currently rolling out a new digital tool that will help build trust and enhance customer satisfaction : the Ford video check. We tested it and it’s just amazing. Read further to see how Ford is transforming the car maintenance experience into a trust building experience that will eventually improve customer loyalty. Car maintenance and repair : a matter of trust If you have already brought your car for repair, you know...

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Education : machine learning for better learning
Apr07

Education : machine learning for better learning

Among the really exciting application of machine learning, there is one that fascinates me : machine learning in the classroom. Recently some very exciting applications have been described to use algorithms to enhance the quality of education and make children smarter. This field of research was cited among the top 10 technologies to follow in 2017. There is hope : data can be used for Greater Good I had been very pessimistic in...

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Data Innovation Summit 2017 : Big Data for Greater Good
Mar31

Data Innovation Summit 2017 : Big Data for Greater Good

The 2017 edition of the Data Innovation Summit is now over and it quickly sold out. What a great success for Philippe Van Impe and his team who have once managed to organize an amazing event. I was kindly invited by the organizer to give a keynote speech on my work at RTBF where I design and conduct the personalization program. Working in a public service environment makes things incredibly different from any private and commercial...

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Virtual Reality : Interview of ArtMyn founder, Loic Baboulaz
Mar27

Virtual Reality : Interview of ArtMyn founder, Loic Baboulaz

After a visit at EPFL in Lausanne we discovered the work of ArtMyn, a startup specialising in Virtual Reality applied to Art. We interwied its founder, Loïc Baboulaz, to understand the genesis of ArtMyn and the evolution of the virtual reality market. IntoTheMinds : where does the original idea for ArtMyn come from ? Loic Baboulaz : ARTMYN is born from the academic project called eFacsimile that ran from 2012 to 2015 at the Laboratory...

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Recommendation algorithms : the myth of filter bubbles at stake
Mar24

Recommendation algorithms : the myth of filter bubbles at stake

We’ve already discussed filter bubbles on this blog, a rather technical term that describes the negative effet of algorithms on our digital life. For more information read this thorough article. Whether or not filter bubbles really exist is still debated and I wanted to compile all scientific results on the subject. There are actually very few of them/ Although Pariser (2011) has claimed the obvious existence of filter bubbles,...

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Big Data : how to build trust with consumers and keep it
Mar22

Big Data : how to build trust with consumers and keep it

With Big Data the digital tracks we are leaving behind us can be exploited, leading to more personalized relationships but also to more fear and distrust. The feeling of being tracked can break the relationship with the customer. This risk is particularly important in the context of public service organizations for which trust is an essential part of the job. “Building trust” was the topic of the first panel discussion to...

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Artificial intelligence: are algorithms biased by nature ?
Mar20

Artificial intelligence: are algorithms biased by nature ?

I attended a workshop at the Maastricht European Centre on Privacy and Cybersecurity where I met Prof. Alessandro Mantelero of Polytecnico di Torino. Prof. Mantelero is well known as a specialist in the protection of personal data, which has become a very important topic with GDPR. In his talk he was discussing among other things the biases of algorithms and highlighted the need to avoid them. Using examples from the insurance sector...

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Twinkind went bankrupt : another startup in 3D printing has died
Mar03

Twinkind went bankrupt : another startup in 3D printing has died

A few years ago we discovered in Berlin a very hot startup : Twinkind. They specialized in 3D printed figurines in a quality never seen before. Their process was based was unique as we explained in this interview of its founder Timo Schaedel. Unfortunately Twinkind filled for bankruptcy in June 2016. The press realease (in German) doesn’t give much detail on the reasons of the failure but our guess is that the market was...

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I finally found a useful Virtual Reality (VR) application
Feb27

I finally found a useful Virtual Reality (VR) application

I have often been disappointed by Virtual Reality (VR) applications. Like IoT (Internet of Things) most VR applications add no or little value for the user. There is an entertainment effect but it’s far from sufficient to make you a loyal and recurrent user. On my latest visit to Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne (EPFL) I had the opportunity to quickly visit the Pierre Soulages exhibition that has held in the Art Lab....

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When will the IoT market eventually crash ?
Feb22

When will the IoT market eventually crash ?

I attended the first day of Unconvention in Brussels in January and what I saw and heard made me reflect on the value of innovation. During the first set of presentation, a speaker explained the current state of an IoT project in Porto where sensors had been implemented everywhere to make the city management more efficient and life more livable. For instance sensors measured pollutants (ozone and CO2) and connected to busses’...

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Visit to EPFL ArtLab featuring leading Big Data projects
Feb20

Visit to EPFL ArtLab featuring leading Big Data projects

I had several opportunities to visit the Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne (EPFL) to discuss scientific and technical collaborations in the field of Big Data. EPFL is one of the worldwide most renown engineering schools/university, with world-class researchers. Big Data is no exception. EPFL (and Switzerland in general) knows how to attract the best brains from the most diverse countries in the world. On my latest visit I...

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Measuring emotions for a better customer experience management
Jan30

Measuring emotions for a better customer experience management

Can we measure customer experience ? This is a topic we already discussed here and the answer was no. Let me come with a new proposal that was addressed by Sensum during the CPDP 2017 conference : can our body reactions be a reliable measure of customer experience (or at least part of it). Please read further to discover more about this very exciting insights into how measuring reliably emotions can help us better understand customer...

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Will Snap Spectacles glasses revive the augmented reality trend?
Jan06

Will Snap Spectacles glasses revive the augmented reality trend?

My brain suddenly made connections between two completely unrelated events : a market research report issued by App Annie, and an announcement by GetNarrative. App Annie predicted that connected glasses will be on the rise in 2017 and GetNarrative announced it was ending business. Read further to understand the link (at least in my brain) between the two events. Connected glasses will rise in 2017 Market researchers at App Annie wrote...

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Customer satisfaction, customer experience and big data
Jan04

Customer satisfaction, customer experience and big data

Improving customer experience is priority #1 of top executives for the next 12 months (Lemon and Verhoef 2016). At the same time Big Data is on every serious company’s agenda. How can Big Data contribute to creating a customer experience that will ensure customer retention ? This is the topic of today’s article where we will question the usefulness of Big Data in today’s digital sphere (yes ! we’ll dare doing...

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The role of Big Data on society : EBU conference
Dec19

The role of Big Data on society : EBU conference

With fellow colleagues of EBU, I organized last week a conference entitled “Big Data and Society“at RTBF, the French-speaking public broadcasting organization of Belgium. As I wrote on EBU website, this event aimed at gathering together professionals from the broadcasting industry to reflect on the impact of Big Data, recommendation algorithms and filter bubbles on society in general, and on users’ behaviors in...

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SIAL 2016 innovations : courgetti nest by Fiordelisi
Dec16

SIAL 2016 innovations : courgetti nest by Fiordelisi

With so many innovations at SIAL 2016 food fair and such a high rate of failure in the food industry, I was often disappointed by products claiming to be innovative. At least one of those novelties really blew me away : Courgetti Nests by Fiordelisi. The product consists of sun-dried zucchinis with a process that has required 4 years of research and development. Producing 10 g of “courgetti nests” requires one medium...

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The best innovations are sometimes the simplest
Dec14

The best innovations are sometimes the simplest

Breakthrough innovations are perhaps the most visible, attract the most media coverage. Yet they remain the exception. Most innovations are incremental. Sometimes small improvements, clever ideas can change the customer experience and be turned into a commercial success. Today we’d like to present you one of those simple, yet ultra clever, idea that is already a huge success on Kickstarter : Frankfurter Brett, a kitchen...

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Amazon Go : this disruptive retail model hides a secret
Dec12

Amazon Go : this disruptive retail model hides a secret

Amazon Go is a 100% connected store where checkout are automated. Amazon Go is the convergence of at least 3 important trends : the first one is the diversification of Amazon into brick-and-mortar store the second one is a trend to decrease costs in the retail sector to increase margins the third one is the dream to put all behaviors into data to better predict what consumers will buy next Trend #1 : Amazon’s diversification...

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A roll to spread chocolate : really a good idea?
Dec08

A roll to spread chocolate : really a good idea?

One at food fair SIAL 2016 featured inovations was a “choco roll”. this product had been selected for its innovative packaging. In light of the debate on the failure rate of innovations in the food sector, we paid a visit to the Israeli company that brought it on the market. The idea behind the “chocolate spread revolution” The company which presented this product at SIAL was “choco roll”. The roll...

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Are we living in the matrix ?
Nov30

Are we living in the matrix ?

Are we already living in the matrix ? That question may seem odd to most of you. Not to some unidentified silicon valley billionaires who are secretly funding scientists to find a way to escape the matrix. I’ve been thinking a lot about freedom and algorithms for a few months now, and would like to share some of my thoughts with you. Background : what was the matrix about ? Let’s remember what the Matrix movie was all...

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Vitality offers Apple watch to monitor your activity : one more insurance into big (health) data
Nov28

Vitality offers Apple watch to monitor your activity : one more insurance into big (health) data

A few weeks ago we were discussing on this blog the trend of the insurance market to collect very intrusive data. I had the opportunity to raise my concerns at several conferences and got the impression that people were not aware of what was going on (especially as far as car insurances are concerned). In particular I gave the example of CSS Insurance in Switzerland which proposed customers to wear a fit band capturing activity data...

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Digitalization : why I will not use my insurance mobile application
Nov21

Digitalization : why I will not use my insurance mobile application

Digitalization in the banking and insurance sectors has led to massive job cuts. In this article I discussed this trend in the banking sector and I debated on TV of this trend in the insurance sector (see here, in French). In light of the dramatic changes that both sectors are currently undergoing, my health insurance company, DKV, recently sent me an email asking to adopt their new digital tool, a mobile application allowing...

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