Information that used to take months or years to garner about your customers can now be done in simply days, minutes or seconds.
"The amazing computational power we have today is fascinating," says Rucha Nanavati, GVP of information technologies at Boise, Idaho-based Albertsons. "You can get personalized so fast."
Data also allows brands to discover where to find new, young recruits. For example, younger people aren't driving as much, so the convenience store may no longer be the best way to target them. April Carlisle, VP of shopper marketing for national retail sales at Atlanta-based Coca-Cola North America, said the company has instead found that young consumers are gaming more and using ride-sharing apps, so it can tailor the message to these platforms.
The customer experience
Data is only as good as how retailers and brands use it. This is where in-store experience, driven by personalization, can soar above the competition when done right.
Carolyn Tastad, group president at Cincinnati-based Procter & Gamble, weighed in on consumers' new, higher expectations. "Technology enables us to serve customers better," she said. "It reduces a learning cycle from months to days. High tech isn't enough; we need to become high touch."
Glamsquad, a New York-based on-demand beauty service company, has ultimate personalization and customization at its core, according to CEO Amy Shecter. Customers can receive their services wherever and whenever they want them — in the home; at a CVS, with which the company has partnered; at the office — but the experience is always highly curated, appropriate and educational.