Marketing, customer satisfaction and loyalty
Satisfied customers will follow you everywhere
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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Get control on tracking with Google MyActivity. True or not ?
Jul20

Get control on tracking with Google MyActivity. True or not ?

It’s now official. Companies went too far as far as data collection is concerned. How can I make such a bold statement? My argument is that Google made a very important move which is a sign that something is changing. Google now gives you the right to see which data it collects on you and to oppose data collection methods. This is made possible through Google MyActivity. Screenshot of my Google activity as displayed in Google...

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Innovation at VRT : Appiness “Spott” keeps growing
May15

Innovation at VRT : Appiness “Spott” keeps growing

Last week I was invited by the innovation division of VRT (Belgium’s Dutch-speaking public television) for their creative circle III. It consisted in a series of presentations and testing from startups incubated in VRT’s “sandbox” department. Presentations and demos were given by 5 startups : Fisheye, Limecraft, Moovly, Appiness, Kiswe. Buy what you see on TV with the Spott mobile app The demo which very much impressed me was given by...

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The Financial Times found the most perfect KPI’s to measure success
May11

The Financial Times found the most perfect KPI’s to measure success

The success of any marketing action needs to be measured with the right KPI’s (Key Performance Indicators). The Financial Times found a unique KPI that allows outstanding predictions of their churn rate. Read further to learn more. KPI’s are difficult to set The very definition of those KPI’s is a crucial part of any project. If you take the wrong KPI’s you’ll get a biased perspective on what you are doing. If you chose the right...

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Will banks sell your data to retailers?
Apr20

Will banks sell your data to retailers?

Your bank knows a lot about you and, as a matter of fact, the banking sector has been investing huge amount in Big Data for years. Similarly retailers know also a lot about you through the purchases you make. Is the next step a merger of data from both world to enhance behavior predictability ? This is the subject of an article on Visionary Marketing. However, unlike you may think, the idea of using banking data for other aims is not...

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Insurances : towards the end of the risk sharing principle ?
Apr18

Insurances : towards the end of the risk sharing principle ?

There is one very important underlying principle of any insurance : risk sharing. Good drivers cover a part of the risk of bad drivers; people in good health pay for those who fall ill. Americans call this a “socialist” way of doing business. But until now insurances in Europe have always favored a group approach vs. an individualistic one. The data revolution may be the end of this. Here’s why. Customer data will enable user-centric...

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Mobile Me : your car has no secrets for Mercedes
Apr11

Mobile Me : your car has no secrets for Mercedes

Nowadays cars can be connected with your smartphone ; not only to make calls but also to control your car at distance. The Mercedes Me application enables the owner to monitor basic and more advanced functionalities of the vehicle through his smartphone. The presence of a SIM card transmitting the information to the smartphone is the enabler of this enhanced connectivity ; but it may also enable Mercedes to become a data provider....

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Service quality : the next retail challenge after Big Data
Apr08

Service quality : the next retail challenge after Big Data

Algorithms have become instrumental in retailers’ strategies to increase loyalty among customers. We don’t know of any major retailer not having a Big Data team working on a.o. predicting churn, couponning, increasing loyalty, new segmentation, … Yet, what we also notice is that all retailers more or less all use the same tools, the same techniques for the same goals. It’s all about Spark, Hadoop, real-time...

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Are smart boxes the future of car insurance?
Mar25

Are smart boxes the future of car insurance?

Telematic units, also called black or smart boxes, are devices installed in a car to monitor a driver’s behavior (speed, acceleration, deceleration, …). They are increasingly used by insurance companies to develop a pay-as-you-drive pricing. Such pricing may be especially interesting for young drivers who are hit by high insurance premiums. Young drivers are victims of their youth One metric sums it up all: 25% of accidents are caused...

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How can third-party data support your Big Data strategy
Mar21

How can third-party data support your Big Data strategy

Collecting and integrating third-party data will be the subject of a talk I’ll give at the Big Data conference of the European Broadcasters’ Union in Geneva on 22-23 March 2016. I’ll present three very interesting use cases of companies which have used third-party data to enrich the knowledge they had of their consumers : TAM airlines (which we already discussed on this blog), Realo (my thanks to them for the great interactions we...

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Big Data : 4 points to understand your legal responsibilities
Mar09

Big Data : 4 points to understand your legal responsibilities

I recently attended a workshop on the legal aspects of Big Data and IoT (Internet of Things) that was organized by Impulse in Brussels. The presenter, Philippe Laurent, had a very clever and clear way of presenting the problems posed by Big Data and I thought it might be interesting to share his presentation and conclusions with you. In particular he proposed a 4-category framework that is easy to understand and will give you...

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Real-estate prices predicted : latest news of startup Realo
Feb26

Real-estate prices predicted : latest news of startup Realo

Last year we reported on the scandal that followed the launch of Realo, a website predicting real-estate prices. A Belgian initiative, Realo has European ambitions and is based on a business model that has proved its efficacy in the US : Zillow.com The scandal was due to the nature of the data used in the algorithm to predict prices : unemployment rate, multiculturality, education levels, … Although all data used was public (and...

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Algorithms : is our freedom threatened?
Feb22

Algorithms : is our freedom threatened?

If you follow the news you may have come across this news : a deep-learning algorithm has defeated the European master of Go. This news was such a milestone in artificial intelligence (AI) that it was featured in the Nature issue on 28 Jan 2016. Big Data scientists believed indeed it would take another 10 years for a computer to beat a human player at Go. The least we can say is that it went much faster than expected. AlphaGo...

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From 7 to 3 degrees of separation
Feb17

From 7 to 3 degrees of separation

In 1969 Jeffrey Travers and Stanley Milgam conducted an experiment on degrees of separation between people. You all have heard about the results: human beings are separated by 6 degrees of acquaintances. Some forty years later Leskovec and Horvitz (2007), both from the Microsoft Research center, concluded that human beings were separated by 7 degrees of acquaintances. 6 or 7 links between Human beings ? The difference comes from a...

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Facebook case: towards more Big Data transparency ?
Feb12

Facebook case: towards more Big Data transparency ?

No later than Monday we were announcing the next Big Data revolution : algorithms will become more transparent in the future. We argued consumers will become increasingly aware of how sensitive their data is, eventually demanding information on how it is used and Big Data transparency. On Monday evening (08 Feb 2016) the French data protection authority (CNIL) together with the fraud authorities (DGCCRF) confirmed that trend. They...

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Big Data : here’s the next revolution
Feb08

Big Data : here’s the next revolution

This is the beginning of the next Big Data revolution. However it remained confidential. A bill was passed in France mid-January that will force the fiscal authorities to reveal the variables in algorithms used to take individual decisions (article in French). In other words, if you are picked up to get your tax declarations scrutinized, the fiscal authorities will have to reveal how you were picked up. Big Data: when ethics comes...

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How radio consumption is changing among younger generations
Oct07

How radio consumption is changing among younger generations

I recently gave a speech on Big Data and Data Mining at the Radio Days of the EBU in Riga (Latvia) and met other fellow marketers and head of European broadcasters from all over Europe. There are two big lessons learned that I want to share with you : Radio consumption has been stable for more than a decade, whatever the country Usages are shifting among new generations (Y and Z) Statistics on radio consumptions across Europe The...

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Facebook new patent for credit rating through social networks
Sep08

Facebook new patent for credit rating through social networks

Have you heard about Facebook’s new patent to evaluate your credit rating based on your social network ? Everyone refers to it but despite all my efforts I’ve been unable to find a new such patent application filled in by Facebook in the US Patent and Trademark Office database. How curious … Yet, many articles refer to an official document. My guess is that few journalist have actually taken the time to read what they referred to. The...

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The one thing to do to handle complaints on public forums well
Jan14

The one thing to do to handle complaints on public forums well

Complaint management is an Art some people say. And it’s true that given the number of recommendations (sometimes contradictory) that exist about how to handle complaints, firms must be very agile to know what to do at the right moment to ensure customer satisfaction. What to do when customers complain on online public forums ? The challenge posed by online forums is huge. They can damage a brand reputation and be the starting...

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12 years dedicated to protecting consumers … voluntarily
Dec19

12 years dedicated to protecting consumers … voluntarily

I had the pleasure to meet two weeks ago another customer satisfaction hero, the destiny of whom was tightly linked to that of Frédéric Klotz (read his interview). The man I met is Joël Guillon, someone I’ve indirectly known for years through the complaint resolution forum he launched in 2002 : LesArnaques.com Joël is one of those knights who fights against bad companies’ practices and who shares his knowledge and his time to help...

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Must-read : interview of a customer satisfaction champion
Dec15

Must-read : interview of a customer satisfaction champion

We are publishing today a very special post. You’ll find below the interview of someone I consider to be a customer service hero, a champion of customer satisfaction. Frédéric Klotz had worked for RueDuCommerce (one of the most renown e-commerce website in France) for 10 years and became known on forums, blogs, social media for his outstanding qualities. He kindly agreed to give us an interview where you’ll learn what he learned in...

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Serving unfair customers: here’s what you should do
Dec08

Serving unfair customers: here’s what you should do

When a customer is unsatisfied, he/she sometimes engages in an interaction with the company to obtain redress. At that point frustration may combine to dissatisfaction and result in aggressiveness and outrageous behavior on the part of the customer. Marketing specialists are unanimous to say a firm should apologize and accept the responsibility. But doing so has also consequences for the employees. How would you feel, as a service...

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Politeness matters: iOS 8 helps you to be polite
Dec03

Politeness matters: iOS 8 helps you to be polite

First of all my thanks to our client Florence for bringing this to our attention. A while ago I wrote with my colleague Laurence Rosier an article entitled “Politeness strategies in firms’ answers to customer complaints“. We made an argument that politeness strategies developed by firms help increase customer satisfaction and analyzed which leviers to activate to effectively make your unsatisfied customer more …...

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Complaint managament: the power of apology
Dec01

Complaint managament: the power of apology

Let’s finish the week with a video and a few lines on complaint management best practices. A recent article was brought to my attention by Dr. Sandra Rothenberger. As we explained in an earlier article, we spend a lot of time observing and analyzing firms’ complaint handling practices and measuring customer satisfaction. This allows us to make some correlations between what is responded by a firm and how the customer reacts. On the...

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Complaint management: an example you should NOT follow
Nov26

Complaint management: an example you should NOT follow

As you may know our agency is working a lot on complaint handling and complaint management practices. To offer recommendations to organizations we study actual complaints and their answers and explore how answers may be perceived by complainants. We would like to offer you today an example of such interaction. To avoid infringing privacy rights, we have chosen an example taken from the online forum Les Arnaques where interactions...

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