Q & A – Jamie O’Gorman, Director of Client Services, Exponea
Jamie O’Gorman is Director of Client Services at Exponea, where he focuses on assisting Exponea clients on how to get the most value out of the platform. Jamie has over 10 years’ experience working on the client side of e-commerce, working with 3M, Studio Moderna, Stilago, and more recently, Missguided. Two years ago he moved to the other side, joining Exponea to help other companies grow.
What does your company do? / What is your USP?
Exponea turns customer data into customer experiences. Exponea is a Customer Data Platform (CDP) and experience cloud for B2C businesses. Our CDP core integrates with a company’s data to un-silo, ID, and reorganize it, directing all communication channels to report to a central data hub. On top of the CDP core, Exponea offers a campaign builder and direct campaign execution layer. Exponea also offers layers of predictive analytics, A/B testing, and campaign analysis. What’s truly unique about Exponea is that the software is all home-grown, and every tool and layer runs within the same program, creating an incredibly consistent and flexible experience.
What’s special about the platform and your approach?
Many of the legacy marketing clouds have been built through acquisition: piecing together different parts of their marketing suite, combining software from different teams. Exponea was built from the ground up. The core of Exponea was developed as a CDP in order to truly create a full view of the customer. Many of our largest competitors are only now starting to develop a CDP as part of their platform, whereas Exponea developed this customer-centric database from the outset, and built execution and analytics layers on top of it.
How does a product/service implementation actually look like and how do you measure success?
Exponea is built to be flexible, meaning that specific modules can be implemented and deployed even before the overall implementation process is complete. Implementation of Exponea is therefore handled on a project-to-project basis, generally over a period of 3-4 months (of course this also depends on the size of the client).
We begin each project by setting up a project scope, which defines what all the outcomes should be, and the responsibilities of each side. We measure our success against this scope, and consider an implementation to be successful once the scope has been accomplished in a timely and high-quality manner.
Implementation Agenda (EXAMPLE)
- Audit of current data practices
- Determine customer identifiers
- Establish fundamental integrations
- Set up emailing
- Ingest customer data
- Begin tracking real-time web events
- Integrate purchase data
- Integrate the product catalog
- Set up basic analytics
- Set up agreed-upon campaigns and use cases
- Train client team to use the software
How are retailers using your systems to gain competitive advantage and what does best practice look like?
In a world where customers have an almost limitless number of options, and fostering customer loyalty has become a main priority, retailers use Exponea to become customer experience leaders. Exponea’s data organizing abilities, combined with additional execution and analytics layers, create a potent tool for designing personalized customer experiences for each individual interacting with the brand. Some of the ways retailers use Exponea to push past competitors include connecting online and offline experiences, making real use of their CRM data, creating omni-channel experiences, IDing individual customers, and gathering more precise data for powerful segmentations and targeting.
What advantage does it add?
Exponea’s tools are all available gathered in one program, giving an advantage over competitors who bundled several programs together to create their cloud. Exponea creates a more consistent and user-friendly experience. Beyond that, Exponea was created to address the problem of customer centricity. It was specifically designed to have a customer data platform at its core, in order to help marketers move their focus to customers instead of channels. Many similar marketing suites started with the channel-centric approach, then had to adapt their systems to fit around the customer, limiting their flexibility and creating unintuitive user interfaces.
What challenges and opportunities do you see in UK retail for 2019 / What challenges are retailers facing in 2019?
The name of the game in 2019 is customer loyalty. Acquisition-based growth is not sustainable; with so many customers already shopping online, there are fewer and fewer “new” customers to acquire every year – and acquisition costs continue to climb. In order to create sustainable growth, 2019 will see more retailers focusing on fostering customer loyalty in order to grow through their existing customer base, rather than acquisition. One major challenge for fostering this loyalty has to do with the organization of customer data.
In order to enable the mass scale personalization tactics that are key to loyalty, retailers need to have their data organized around the customer. This can be a challenge for many retailers, as their data is siloed: it’s split up by department, by device used, by channel, etc. meaning it’s difficult to build a comprehensive view of all their customers.
How will you address these challenges and turn them into successes?
In order to solve the problem of disorganized data, Exponea’s core offering is a customer data platform. Exponea’s CDP integrates with a company’s data, reorganizing it and redirecting all data sources to a main central hub, regardless of where the data originates. The CDP organizes all this customer data into customer profiles, which are updated in real-time based on the user’s actions. Now, instead of a bucket of data like “offline data” or “return data,” the bucket is Joe Customer. For every single customer.
Starting with Exponea’s core CDP, retailers can begin to shift their focus towards fostering customer loyalty. The data can now be used to create automated recommendations and offers that are based off the interests of each individual customer. With Exponea, these companies can then work directly with their newly organized data to create and launch campaigns, perform A/B testing, enable predictive analytics, analyse the success of marketing efforts, and more – all within the same program.
What is on the horizon for you as a company?
Exponea will continue to develop new tools to help retailers create remarkable customer experiences. More specifically, we will focus on improving the capabilities of our current channels (web, email, push notifications) while also adding new channels to enable our clients to be present where their customers are present. In addition, we will continue to invest in enhancing our machine learning technology (product recommendations and real-time customer predictions) to deliver consistent and relevant customer experiences to the right audiences, at scale.
To learn more about how Exponea can help your retail strategy visit them here
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