IoT For Better Customer Engagement

Emily Mui

Today, Internet of Things (IoT) technologies are breaking through business dimension barriers. In the past, integrated IoT was mere speculation—the stuff of 1999’s Smart House or Orwell’s 1984. Now, IoT is hitting the shelves in the form of consumer products.

Track IoT’s movement into consumerism

Household names such as Nestle, Philips, and Target helped move IoT into the consumer dimension. These companies are reaping the rewards of integrating IoT into the customer experience (CX). Target, for example, now has Connected Home stores in a few key locations. These stores recreate a home environment using acrylic, giving customers an immersive experience with the brand’s connected devices. Target humanized IoT by showing products in action in a realistic home setting—ultimately boosting CX.

BMW is another company using IoT to boost CX. Many of the company’s cars have trunk motion sensors. Consumers can open the trunk automatically by moving a foot underneath the trunk sensor. The car doesn’t allow you to close the trunk if you shut the keys inside—unless you force it to close, as one of our staff members discovered. In that situation, she called BMW Assist instead of AAA or a locksmith. After answering a few easy questions, BMW unlocked her car doors remotely. In this case, IoT enabled her to handle the situation with ease. That made her an especially happy customer.

Learn how IoT is changing CX

As more B2C companies discover the advantages of using industrial-grade, consumer-friendly IoT to enhance the customer experience, consumers can expect a more connected lifestyle. IoT sensors can collect data and provide custom customer experiences, using capabilities that measure consumer engagement without the need for consumer interaction. Brands can obtain a complete picture of consumers’ cognitive, emotional, and physical reactions to products this way.

These sensors can ultimately improve the customer experience through increased individualization. Today’s consumers want to feel a connection with a brand and that it listens to and responds to their needs. IoT sensors can provide exactly this. Sensors also support gamification and rewards through connected promotion and entertainment platforms. From before consumers interact with a product to retaining them through total customization, brands have the opportunity to optimize CX.

Integrate consumer IoT smoothly

Many consumers embrace customer IoT, but others are less enthusiastic. A company can overwhelm consumers with IoT if it targets them from all angles, all at once, and makes life more complicated instead of easier. Research has shown that companies that use IoT sensors for ultimate customer engagement can be successful with this approach with: offering rewards, providing information and helping with decision making, facilitation, delivering real-time service and innovative offerings through customer feedback.

But how do you use IoT to create customer experience, which in turns leads into better customer engagement?

Get on board with IoT for better customer experience and engagement

IoT has the power to increase customer engagement, strengthen retention, and optimize customer service. Companies that ignore the power of IoT to customize the consumer experience will ultimately lose ground in their industries.

With IoT for CX, you can automatically adjust your marketing based on each customer’s needs. This requires a blend of technology and customer understanding know-how to create a seamless and impactful customer experience. The IoT technology needs to work with a company’s ERP, e-commerce, and CRM systems without it looking like a hodgepodge of toys that don’t even belong in the same era, let alone the same toy box. The right platform will provide powerful integration and real time processing capabilities that will help companies make sense of the sensor data as it relates to their customer base while also enabling frontline employees to take action in real time.

Predicting and responding to consumers’ unspoken needs are every marketer’s dream and is becoming easier to materialize today. As we become more connected, we expect our lives to become easier, not more complicated. If companies integrate connected consumer IoT correctly, they can forge bonds with consumers on a close, personal level—securing loyalty and retention. Controlling customer experience is a delicate craft, but IoT can steady a brand’s hand and make targets more attainable.

Learn more about how to empower business innovation here.

Emily Mui

About Emily Mui

Emily Mui is Sr. Director of HANA Cloud Platform (HCP) Product Marketing at SAP with 15+ years of product management and product marketing experience in cloud computing, business intelligence and analytics. In her current role, she develops high impact awareness content and programs to educate customers on the value of HCP for innovating new business applications. At BusinessObjects and SAP, she led several successful product suite launches, managed number user conferences including key topic areas for SAPPHIRE NOW as well as serve as the lead BI contact with ASUG. Emily was also the SAP lead for the SAP dashboarding solution including building up the user community. Her areas of expertise include analytics, big data and cloud computing. Emily holds a B.S. in managerial Economics from U.C. Davis and an M.S. in Industrial Administration (MBA) from Carnegie Mellon University.