Many companies are pursuing Big Data with the ultimate aim of better understanding and selling to their customers. After all, it is well-understood at this point that even basic personalization, like using customers’ individual names, can substantially increase open and response rates for physical and digital mail. And Big Data promises a far greater degree of personalization and targeting. But collecting that data can be like handling a live wire: You can wind up having a real bad day if you don’t treat it with respect.
“Consumers don’t necessarily see the value in trading off data with these organizations,” Kohn explains. “What they get in terms of a quid pro quo with those suppliers is not quite so clear. With a bank they can get guidance. A doctor will help you with that information. Consumers are looking for a two-way, value-creating conversation, not just an offer.”
When it comes to collecting and leveraging Big Data for customer communications, Kohn recommends the following data management steps: