How to achieve mature data analysis to attract and retain customers
Since the pandemic the hospitality and events sector has been dealt a tough hand at almost every turn. The UK is currently experiencing a national energy and cost of living crisis and one of the worst labour and skills shortages in recent history, which has left 9% of jobs in hospitality unfilled. This string of events has forced many businesses in the industry to close their doors, with restaurant closures rising by 60% last year, at a faster rate than during the pandemic, as consumers are forced to tighten their budgets and reevaluate their spending habits and behaviours.
Some hospitality businesses have managed to weather the storm though. A recent study from Kantar found that many restaurants have bounced back to pre-pandemic levels in terms of value. However, footfall remains at about 80% of 2019’s levels.
With less people walking through the door, any venue – whether it’s an event, pub, café, hotel or restaurant - must make the most of every customer that enters their premises. And one way to do this is through the power of data. By implementing intelligent data capture, venues can build a single view of their customers, which can be used to engage with their needs directly and strengthen customer relations.
Why is data important?
The value of a business often resides in its data, yet few realise this. Some of a business’ value comes from the brand, image and reputation, as well as any contracts in place, but for any events or hospitality business, the most important thing is getting people through the doors. This is a much harder task without quality, mature data.
By properly leveraging the data you hold on your customers, you can be much more powerful in the way you remarket to them. You can be more targeted and personalised in your approach, helping to strengthen loyalty and encourage them to revisit.
Data allows you to understand your customer, which can help shape almost everything your business does. It’s unbiased, and unemotional, giving you a black and white picture of what your customer wants, and what your business needs to do in order to reach and engage them effectively. So how do you effectively harvest and analysis your data to the advantage of your business?
What is data auditing?
It starts with a data audit, which takes stock of all a business’ data, interrogating it to determine how valuable it is, and whether it is fit for the required purpose, whatever that may be. Data audits help you to understand the quality of the data, what information is missing, and what more the data could be doing for the business.
Undergoing a data audit is the first step to truly knowing where your data is, what it contains, and how it can work harder for you.
From here, your business can begin to build a single-view of the data, pulling in every source such as website analytics, or previous booking data, to one easy-to-navigate place, to give a comprehensive overview of the information. It allows the business to profile its data, segmenting customers into various groups based on behaviours, age, geography and even more intricate metrics such as whether they like to pay for their festival ticket up front, or spread the cost, for example. At this stage the volume of data has grown and matured, and selling is personalised to each customer.
What is mature data analysis and why is it key?
Mature data analysis means you now have clean, secure and segmented data, assertive collection processes, large data quantities, and your communication and selling are specific to the customer’s individual needs.
Reaching this level of data analysis is critical for any business to remain competitive. Customers today expect high standards of service. They expect you to understand their individual needs, and solve their problems, and they want to be responded to quickly. Anything less and they are likely to take their custom elsewhere. Mature data enables a brand to get a drilled down, single view of their customers which is a must; ‘how do they like to be contacted? What deals are they interested in? When do they like to visit? How do they spend their money? What is it about the brand that they like? What don’t they like?
This level of insight can help mould the company’s entire business strategy from its marketing and customer service decisions to its technology and growth plans Whether you want to know which items to include in lunchtime offers or to automate the ordering system using self-service kiosks, or where to expand your business in terms of additional locations; mature data will give you the knowledge to make these important decisions.
Data maturity can be a long process without the correct support or expertise. However, with the right solutions in place the journey to this stage of data can be much faster and easier to achieve.
If you’d like to know more about our data services, check out the Data Services page here, or get in touch!