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Text Analytics Divulges First-Person Intelligence

Consumers are typically seem by businesses as those who buy or use a product or service. The term conjures a one-way relationship between seller and buyer.

Customers however, extend upon that finite definition to being consumers that get involved in the marketplace via competitions, chat rooms, blogs, quizes, polls, press etc.

These 'customer' interactions are often referred to as 'engagements' or 'events', each of which represents an additional opportunity for the marketer to build an additional link to the customer through a positive brand exposure or product experience.

The smart marketer uses these events to learn more about the customer, and what they think of their offerings. The challenge is to capture some additional tidbit of information about a single customer with every interaction, and to use that event as a trigger to do more for your customer.

With approximately 75 to 100 million blogs and 10 to 20 million Internet discussion boards and forums in the English language alone, thats a lot of missed opportunities if business owners are NOT capturing, and using this data.

Customer surveys, focus groups and interviews have not proven reliable channels in the past to obtain unbiased feedback. Customers only give you answers to what they’re asked, with opinions and insights overlooked in scripted surveys. The more formal the channel, the less reliable the information.


There are numerous technology solutions available attempting to tag, sort, search, organize and manage much of this unstructured data. However, the key is to extract validated insight about the customers behaviour, desires, trends etc

The best place to capture this invaluable information is during service calls and from analysing online entries, where customers offer more truthful information, directly related to their own needs. The power of the voice has never been louder than since the www provided a global, unsolicited platform for individuals to rant and rave.

It is well known that customers find peer reviews are more influential than advertising. Extracting structured logic from unstructured data is the next wave in data warehouses and business intelligence systems, to truly understand the customer.

This information is then leveraged across the entire organisation efficiently and effectively. Customer analysis is becoming a core, strategic part of the business. This requires:

Analysis of unstructured components of feedback and reports of specific service or product issues.

Processes that automatically understand and analyze the detail of the information found in this unstructured data, combine it with structured data to give a comprehensive information base upon which business decisions can be made.

Feedback to intelligence contains the details behind product successes and failures. It helps marketers answser questions such as:

  • How well is the product launch doing?
  • Which marketing messages resonate best with which market groups?
  • What are the most sought after features of our products?
  • Are there any emerging product issues?
  • Where should we invest our product development budget?
  • Which products and services fit best with which market segments?
  • Are our customers happy with our products, and why?

Traditional databases and business intelligence software is unable to parse such first person feedback, let alone transform it into any useful, actionable data. The solution that does provide this capability is text analytics.

Proper analysis of first-person feedback using text analytics enables enterprises to extract, categorize, structure and integrate data from unstructured information to directly improve their products, services, brands and profits.


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