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It’s very easy for customization to backfire and subtract value instead of adding it.
Consider the troubling fact that we may be coming to a point in the hyper-personalization journey where the most hyper-personalized offering is no offers at all. Nobody likes to be constantly bombarded with content, personalized or not.
And that’s the paradox of hyper-personalization: if everyone’s doing it, then in a sense, nobody’s doing it.
5G and associated technologies such as IoT and edge computing offer businesses the ability to make hyper-personalization even more “hyper” through higher bandwidths and faster processing of larger volumes of data. important.
This means that we are at a very interesting inflection point: where to stop? If the promise of 5G is more data, better data and faster data, and the result is getting to know our customers better to annoy them even more, albeit in a “personal” way, when, where and why let’s say us: “wait, maybe this is going too far. »?
How do you achieve hyper-personalization in a world where everyone is doing it and where customers are increasingly jaded and worried about how companies use their data?
Let’s see what’s wrong first.
Hyper-personalization and bad data
Hyper-personalization is very easy to mess up, and when you do spoil it, it has the exact opposite of the intended effect: it attracts customers a way instead of keeping them there.
Consider an online ad for a product that appears for you on a website a few days after you have already purchased the advertised item. This is what I call “the noise”. It’s just a nuisance, and the company placing this ad – or rather the data platform they use to generate the algorithms for the ads – should already know that the person has already purchased this item and therefore is not presenting not a “repeat offer”. but an up-sell or cross-sell offer.
It seems rudimentary in 2022, but it’s still all too common, and you’re probably nodding your head right now because you’ve encountered this problem.
The noise usually comes from what is called bad data or dirty data. Whatever you want to call it, it pretty much ruins the customer experience.
Hyper-personalization and slow data
The second major problem is slow data, meaning any data that is used too slowly to be useful, which typically includes data that needs to get to the data warehouse before it can be incorporated into decisions.
Slow data is one of the main reasons why edge computing was invented: to be able to process data as close as possible to where it is ingested in order to use it before it loses its value.
Slow data produces not-so-fun customer experiences, like walking half a mile to your gate at the airport, only to find that the gate has been changed, and then, after walking the half-mile to at your point of arrival from, receive a text message on your phone from the airline indicating that your gate has been changed.
Again, whatever name you give it: latency, slow data, annoying— the end result is a poor customer experience.
How to Solve the Hyper-Personalization Paradox
I have no doubt that the people who invented hyper-personalization had big intentions: to make things as personal as possible so that your customers would pay attention, stay happy, and stay loyal.
And for a lot of companies, for a long time, it worked. Then came the deluge of data. And the regulations. And jaded customers. We are now at a stage where we have to rethink the way we do personalization because the old ways are no longer effective.
It’s easy and okay to blame legacy technology for all of this. But the solution goes further than simply extracting and replacing. Companies need to think holistically about all aspects of their technology stacks to find the easiest way to get as much data as possible from A to B.
The faster you process your data, the better. But it’s not all about speed. You also need to be able to provide fast contextual intelligence to your data so that each packet is informed by all the packets that came before it. In that sense, your tech stack should be a bit like a great storyteller: someone who knows what the customer needs and feels at any given moment, because they know what’s happened up until present and how it will affect customer decisions in the future.
Let’s start thinking of our customer experiences as stories and our tech stacks as storytellers or maybe a story generators. Perhaps then our personalization efforts will become truly ‘hyper-personal’, that is, relevant and instantaneous experiences that are a source of pleasure rather than annoyance.
David Flower brings over 28 years of IT industry experience to the role of CEO of Volt Active Data. Flower has a proven track record of creating significant shareholder value across multiple software industries globally through the development and execution of focused strategic plans, organizational development and product leadership. This room is exclusive to Broadband Breakfast.
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