Vancouver customer intelligence platform provider Vision Critical has launched Stories, a new feature of their cloud-based Sparq platform, allowing marketers and companies to organize and share content extracted from their existing customer insight communities across an organization, for the purpose of facilitating decision-making processes.
The aim of Sparq is to help companies to build secure, branded insight communities, and to help leverage insights and provide the tools for asking customers the right questions at the right time.
The emphasis of Stories also promises to shift the business value for customer intelligence from the kind of in-the-moment customer engagement more typically associated with social media to longer-term insights.
“We have seen our customers continuously prove that building communities of customers they can engage with on an ongoing basis provides better quality insight than traditional research methods, which are rapidly losing their effectiveness,” said Divesh Sisodraker, Executive Vice President, Product at Vision Critical. “Now, with Stories, every piece of information remains accessible and can be easily recalled and built into new narratives, producing a cumulative effect of richer, deeper insight as time goes by. The ongoing investment a company makes into its community and engagement activities creates real value that can produce a distinct competitive advantage in fast-moving business environments.”
The way the platform works is that a manager can look at past results supplied by customer activity and compile that into a new Story, building a narrative that can be leveraged to provide information quickly and efficiently, generating ongoing insights created from the process can then be fed into the larger narrative of the ongoing Story.
This means deeper insights for the company and for marketers while lessening the time and effort spent babysitting individual campaigns for community managers.
Early customers for Stories have been women’s clothing and accessory company The Limited and the Sacramento Municipal Utilities District.
Head of client insights at The Limited, Victoria Laivins, uses Stories to engage the company’s customers in conversation for product and concept testing and for promotional purposes.
“Stories makes it easier for us to use timely customer insight to support quick business decisions,” said Laivins. “For example, for an upcoming buy review, I was able to search for all of our recent insight on dresses, engage our community for additional information we needed, and then create a Story that recommended the right type and style for our clients’ needs.”
The Sacramento Municipal Utilities District is the sixth largest community-owned electric service provider in the United States.
“Efficiently gathering customer feedback and learning more about what our customers expect from their energy providers is a primary goal of ours,” stated Susan Corbelli, the service provider’s principal research specialist, who used Stories to help analyze the company’s customer experience for its online billing system, and to design and launch a new energy product.
Traditional market research is typically built around slow-moving, expensive and time-consuming standalone projects. So an easy-to-implement customer intelligence platform that can be constantly updated and augmented is de facto a better value proposition in terms of leveraging insights over a longer period of time.
Stories is available now for new and existing customers of Vision Critical’s Sparq platform.