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Indicative 2021 Predictions: Growth in Cloud Data Warehouses heralds a new era for Customer Analytics

vmblog 2021 prediction series 

Industry executives and experts share their predictions for 2021.  Read them in this 13th annual VMblog.com series exclusive.

Growth in Cloud Data Warehouses heralds a new era for Customer Analytics

By Jeremy Levy, CEO of Indicative

Across all industries, marketers and product managers are searching for the best ways to grow revenue as their businesses grapple with the ongoing pandemic and one disruption after another. Whoever has the best understanding of - and ability to leverage - user behaviors will have a significant advantage, as external market forces continue to squeeze suppliers and customer journeys divert from norms.

As we proceed further into unknown territory in 2021, the ability to fully grasp those journeys will be the differentiator that marketing and product teams need. Thanks to recent developments in the cloud, such insights are within reach.

Access to analytics becoming easier than ever

As cloud data warehouses (CDWs) became easier to operate and less expensive, companies' reliance on them has increased significantly. Notably, Snowflake's IPO in September marked a welcome-to-the-mainstream moment for the technology. The proliferation of CDWs underpins every use case of user data, including Customer Analytics. Over the next five years, Customer Analytics can become as ubiquitous as WordPress - a platform so common even web hobbyists use it - because the barriers to operating one's own cloud data warehouse will continue to fall. One-click integrations with now-more-available CDWs will make Customer Analytics platforms as simple to set up, too.

Once they have access to a CDW and a robust Customer Analytics platform, product managers and growth marketers will have everything they need to complete their understanding of customer journeys and feature optimization. 2021 should be the year of no more excuses, as data and Customer Analytics help to demystify buyer decisions and user preferences, uncovering previously inaccessible insights. Companies that lack this understanding of what's driving their business and product usage will be at a significant competitive disadvantage.

Plotting the increasingly complex customer journey

Platforms that can connect directly to a CDW, integrating easily with Google BigQuery, Snowflake and others, will help businesses map out the customer journey's twists and turns with ever-increasing clarity. We will see significant movement toward these sorts of integrations in 2021. And within the next five years, just about anyone will be able to pull analytical insights out of their cloud data.

Too often, marketing and product teams are forced to make decisions based on intuition and anecdotal feedback, with murky or overly simplistic success measures. Customer Analytics will help brand and product managers channel their creativity into better-grounded action plans, ready-made for quick adjustments as new data helps companies evaluate their marketing and product decisions.

Next-generation uses for analytics

It's not yet that easy for business users to move beyond the dashboard and reporting use case. Analytics consumers want to know more than what happened - they want to know why it happened and how data can help them drive better business outcomes. Viewing sophisticated customer analysis will allow companies to see how even the smallest changes can impact the customer journey, but the real game-changer comes when an analytics platform itself can suggest and help product leaders integrate new insights into the product itself. With the assistance of AI and machine learning, Customer Analytics should be able to light the way to a more successful user journey with better, more consistent conversions.

The future of analytics is about automated insights and automated action, and we will see greater disruption from machine learning at all levels of the data stack. The idea of an analytics-enabled product roadmap adjusting to how customers use the product could become a reality as we look a decade or more down the road. Consider the possibilities of providing the analytics platform with your goals and having it set the path to get there.

Customer Analytics should be a revenue-generating tool, not merely the basis of an after-action report. If driving revenue is the goal, the analytics engine can steer the business toward best-performing customers and replicate their user experience across all channels. Cloud data warehouses, combined with other innovations, are making this future possible for brands of all sizes.

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About the Author

jeremy levy 

Jeremy is the CEO and Co-Founder of Indicative, a Customer Analytics platform for product and marketing teams. He is a serial entrepreneur and a veteran of New York City's Silicon Alley. Jeremy Co-Founded Xtify, the first Mobile CRM for the Enterprise, acquired by IBM in 2013. He also Co-Founded MeetMoi, a pioneering location-based dating service for mobile sold to Match.com in 2014.

Published Tuesday, February 02, 2021 7:28 AM by David Marshall
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