Friday Jun 20, 2014

Big Data for Social Requires Fast Data…So Oracle Did That

We know the goal.  Acquire big data, then use it to deliver just the right messages to customers and prospects at just the right time, in just the right place, in just the right way. Easy, right?

Of course not. If it were easy, all brands would be on their game, delivering these perfect and profitable customer experiences every day. If I had been browsing guitar amps lately and I was near a guitar store this weekend, I’d get a social message to the effect of, “Hey, we saw friend x recommended brand y guitar amp to you. Swing by and we’ll give you 20% off on it. Rock on.”

That kind of experience rarely happens to me (maybe because I don’t play guitar). For those to happen, social big data, combined with other public and enterprise data, needed to “learn” what I was seeking and which brand I was leaning toward due to peer-to-peer recommendation.

Then, it had to retain and “know” that info so that when a real-time location signal came through, that knowledge could be tapped and leveraged to create and deliver the message before the moment is lost. It not only requires big data, it requires fast data.

All social marketing ecosystems are not created equal. Few are capable of the size and speed of data gathering, processing, filtering and delivery that makes a social enabled enterprise even possible. A social marketing platform that can tap into the kind of size and speed Oracle can serve up would position you exceptionally well against your competition.

On June 10, Larry Ellison announced the Oracle Database In Memory Option, an add-on to the Oracle 12c database that super-boosts real-time analytics and transactional workloads. How much of a super-boost? Real-time analytics queries that are 100x faster and online transaction processing that’s twice as fast. It’s possible because your most important info can be held in dynamic random-access memory (DRAM) for instant access. And data can be stored in both the columns needed for analytics and the rows used for transactions.

Big data that lags behind the customer’s speed of life doesn’t do you much good. They’re out there right now, researching and buying on mobile. Half of all local searches are performed on mobile. eMarketer estimates mobile commerce sales should go over $113 billion by 2017. Mobile use continues to explode and digital payments are only getting easier to do.

The future of the enterprise is this: a massive shared customer data pool continuously pulling from multiple data sources, available to all business functions for insight and action in perfect alignment so customer interactions aren’t carried out in department silos, generating metrics that inform against varied business goals and can be turned around for real-time, on-location customer engagement and conversion. Wowsers.

Will you be able to handle that coming big data volume as well as the need for speed?

6 Ways to Modernize Your Customer Experience

If customers have changed, if the way they research and shop have changed, if their expectations have changed, if their ability to act on dissatisfaction has changed, but your customer experience has NOT changed, what was once “good enough” may now be crippling.

Well, the customer has changed, and why wouldn’t they? You’ve probably changed too in your role as consumer. There’s more info available, it’s easier to get, there’s more choice, you’re more mobile, you’re more connected, it’s easier to buy, and yes, it’s easier to switch brands if experiences don’t meet your now higher expectations.

Thanks to technological advances, we as marketers can increasingly work borderline miracles. But if we’re still not adamantly adopting customer centricity, and if we aren’t making the customer experience paramount amongst business goals, the tech is wasted. A far more modern customer experience is called for. Here are 6 ways to get there:

1. Modern Marketing:

Marketing data is aggregated and targeted to the right customers, who are getting personal, relevant communications. In return, you’re getting insight that finally properly attributes revenue to your marketing efforts.

2. Modern Selling:

Demand is being driven across all channels with modern selling tools. Productivity is up thanks to coordinated communication and selling, and performance is ever optimized using powerful analytics.

3. Modern CPQ:

You’re cross-selling and upselling more effectively since reps and channel partners have been empowered with the ability to quickly, automatically generate 100% accurate, customer-friendly quotes complete with price controls and automated approvals.

4. Modern Commerce:

You’re leveraging data and delivering personalized, targeted digital experiences to everyone. You’re attracting more visitors, and you’re able to scale and keep up with the market and control the experience.

5. Modern Service:

You’re better serving your customers by making it easier for them to engage with your brand, plus you’re lowering your costs by increasing agent and tech support efficiencies.

6. Modern Social:

You’re getting faster, deeper, more accurate insights from social and turning content around faster, which then goes out to the right people at the right time in the right place. You’ve also gotten proactive in your service, and customers love that.

For far too many brands, the buying journey of Need, Research, Select, Buy, Use, Recommend across the multiple connect points of Social, Mobile, Store, Call Center, Site, Ecommerce is a disconnected mess. Oracle’s approach to CX is to connect every interaction your customer has with your brand, avoiding the revenue losses lousy customer experiences bring.

How important is the experience to customers? 94% are willing to pay more of their hard-earned money to have better ones, while a meager 1% say they get the good, consistent experiences they expect.

Brands, your words aren’t as loud anymore, so your actions as they relate to customer experience are going to have to do the talking.

Oracle becomes the second largest Cloud SAAS Company in the World!

REDWOOD SHORES, Calif., June 19, 2014 -- Oracle Corporation (NYSE: ORCL) today announced that fiscal 2014 Q4 total revenues were up 3% to $11.3 billion. Software and Cloud revenues were up 4% to $8.9 billion. GAAP Cloud software-as-a-service (SaaS) and platform-as-a-service (PaaS) revenues were up 25% to $322 million, while non-GAAP SaaS and PaaS revenues were up 23% to $327 million. In addition, Cloud infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) revenues were up 13% to $128 million. New software licenses revenues were unchanged at $3.8 billion. Software license updates and product support revenues were up 7% to $4.7 billion. Overall hardware systems revenues were up 2% to $1.5 billion with hardware systems products up 2% to $870 million, and hardware systems support up 2% to $596 million.

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