Get the Most Out of Customer Intelligence for Better Insights

If you’re sitting on customer intelligence in your CRM or database — is your marketing team making the most of it?

Customer intelligence allows marketers to understand leads and current clients more in-depth, and gain better insights. It’s essentially an analytical collection of customer activity, which can enhance the customer journey.

This type of intelligence doesn’t necessarily bring large quantities of leads, but it helps target better quality leads.

But without prior planning, gathering and using these insights can get obstructed by misaligned sales and marketing teams and unorganized tech stacks.

What is Customer Intelligence?

Customer intelligence refers to gathered data used as actionable insights for current and potential customers. It’s a collection of customer analytics to understand possible customer behavior, which makes it a great addition for creating 360 customer views.

Pinpointing behavioral patterns makes it easier to find new business opportunities and personalize campaign messaging. Keep in mind that 83% of consumers are willing to share their data to enable a personalized experience (as long as businesses are transparent about how they are going to use it and that customers have control over it).

Let’s say your office equipment company launches a new virtual meeting system — it’s essential for your team to ponder:

  • Who would want to purchase your system?
  • What do they want from your system?
  • When is it best for them to use it?
  • Why do they want it?

The answers may already be in your CRM, or other existing data storage solutions.

Customer intelligence, not to be confused with relationship intelligence, can be found from form fills, email replies, surveys, and webinar registrations. And if there’s not enough data there, there’s always third-party data providers. 

What is a Customer Intelligence Platform?

Well, the easy answer is: a platform for customer intelligence

But it’s basically a solution to store customer and lead information, and they come in various forms. 

One of the most popular platforms for customer intelligence are customer relationship management (CRM) systems. There are also customer data platforms (CDPs) and data management platforms (DMPs).

Since the digital solution market is ever-expanding, there are customer intelligence platforms (CIPs), specifically for collecting and organizing customer intelligence.

CIPs are more streamlined versions of other platforms, and join real-time data from all data solutions to complete customer views. 

Whichever platform you use for customer intelligence depends on your company’s size, industry, location, and budget.

How Can I Maximize Customer Intelligence?

With your existing customer intelligence, you can make the most of what you have, gather some more (or both?)

Whichever way, data-driven insights (which is an umbrella for all sorts of data and intelligence) accelerate efforts in maximizing ROI.

Here are areas to maximize your customer intelligence:

  • The buyer’s journey – Both sales reps and marketers can go deeper, considering that 70% of the buyer’s journey is complete before a buyer speaks to sales.
  • The sales funnel – Engage with leads at every stage (after audience segmentation).
  • Campaigns – Make campaigns more customer-centric, as opposed to product-centric.
  • Content – Tailor messaging for a more personalized customer experience.
  • Personas – Create in-depth personas so your teams know exactly which kind of lead is in your market.

But don’t forget to create a solid strategy so marketers have a blueprint to work off of.

Steps to Build a Customer Intelligence Strategy

When putting together a customer intelligence strategy, remember to centralize technologies used by your teams. Since real-time data comes from so many sources, marketing teams need to decide what to use for collection, storage, analysis, and action.

With that in mind, here are steps to build an actionable customer intelligence strategy:

  1. Expand your data collection efforts (consider first and third-party data).
  2. Decide which data points to look out for and act on.
  3. Assemble a data science team to handle the backend of data.
  4. Invest in customer experience solutions and strategies.
  5. Expand and organize your teams’ tech stack.
  6. Align with your content marketing team.

Get More Out of Data Insights with Customer Intelligence

Utilizing customer intelligence gives marketers a greater chance to hit their goals with their existing data.

But in order for it to be worth it, intelligence (of any kind) must be actionable and accurate. Consider things like validated phone numbers, industries your organization can sell to, decision makers, newly funded companies, etc.

Even if you don’t already have sufficient customer intelligence, you can easily invest in more. Find your data, create a strategy, and get better leads.