Unleashing Hyper-Personalization: Leveraging SAP Solutions for Enhanced Customer Experiences
The earlier two blogs in our hyper-personalization series covered the “What” and “Why’s” around hyper-personalization. Today, we will discuss how businesses can personalize the different areas of their ecosystem to realize significant improvements in their customer outreach to generate concrete benefits. Essentially, we’ll dive deeply into the “How” side of things.
Personalization at scale has the potential to create $1.7 trillion to $3 trillion in new value. Capturing this value will require mastering the technologies and addressing the organizational disconnects - Mckinsey
To integrate and accelerate hyper-personalization strategies and derive maximum value from all data assets, organizations need to leverage the right set of technical capabilities. These capabilities will:
- Consolidate pivotal data
- Uncover useful real-time insights for immediate and informed data-driven decisions
- Instigate actions/activities based on those decisions.
Not having the best technology can limit your ability to hyper-personalize. eCommerce, ERP, and Point of Sale are 3 technologies that enable hyper-personalization. Any business that has one or a combination of these can go on to develop the most relevant, impactful, and hyper-personalized campaigns.
Advanced analytics solutions such as SAP Datasphere are ideal platforms to consolidate that pivotal data. SAP Datasphere can extract data from multiple sources in real-time, (Point of Sale, eCommerce, loyalty data, inventory in POS or SAP CAR (Customer Activity Repository), and/or ERP/warehouse systems. It lets you work with the data, provide insights and use the insights as a starting point for Marketing and promotional activities through APIs between SAP Datasphere and HubSpot for example.
Why do SAP solutions matter in your Hyper-personalization journey?
Advanced solutions, such as Datasphere and even SAP CAR make it easier to integrate & unify omnichannel data to uncover findings for personalized messaging. What would have been a cumbersome process of studying a complex data estate is now left in the hands of these solutions that can fetch, visualize, and integrate meaningful insights in real-time, with minimal manual intervention. Just configure it once and unlock relevant insights & relationships from the heterogenous data spread periodically.
SAP Datasphere, S/4HANA, and CAR can automate and simplify data sourcing and analysis, besides improving accuracy, agility, efficiency, and segmentation logic in predicting customer preferences. Equipped with AI, ML, and predictive analysis, these solutions can do a holistic analysis and give a real-time view of the data pipeline, optimizing personalization strategies by enabling data-driven decisions at the speed of business. Furthermore, it can scale to support a growing personalization campaign, by responding quickly to changing customer preferences and market trends.
The value of getting personalization right, or wrong, is multiplying - Mckinsey
With Google leading the way in announcing the discontinuation of third-party tracking cookies in browsers (targeted for 2024), marketers are more dependent upon 1st Level data. Without tracking cookies, collecting age, gender, user behavior, and other details to tailor messaging, it will get harder to acquire this data from external parties.
Innovative marketers are improving interactions with customers through hyper-personalization, future-proofing their marketing, and coping with browser and regulatory changes by turning to alternatives. They are leaning on SAP solutions to channel relevant messaging across the customer lifecycle. Using these solutions, they’ll be able to leverage mass amounts of intricate personal data, capture customer signals, and deliver hyper-targeted contextual messaging at the right time & place. Let’s take a look at these solutions in detail.
How does Datasphere from SAP help with hyper-personalization?
Datasphere, built on the SAP Business Technology Platform (SAP BTP), can provide a holistic 360° view of the entire lifecycle journey of every customer through multiple systems. Allowing you to engage customers through individualized messaging, by acting on their specific insights and delivering hyper-personalized experiences. Such tailor-made experiences guarantee high customer lifetime value as well as the ability to maximize full-margin sales value, even for the outlier sizes.
If you are already running SAP in your business such as S/4HANA, Datasphere already has all the necessary connectors built-in – with an out-of-the-box semantic understanding of SAP Data giving meaning to your data Immediately.
You can use this to bring together stock information from S/4HANA, combine that with store stock information from Point of Sale or CAR for already consolidated stock information, combine it with information from eCommerce or loyalty card information such as size or color preferences, and then run analytics against it. You then can use the result to drive promotions of the items matching customer preferences for the stock or excess stock in place. Targeting those specific customers most likely to purchase can be accomplished through integration with marketing tools such as Hubspot.
Let’s take a look at some of the fundamental capabilities of SAP Datasphere:
Limitless Integration: Datasphere lets you simplify your data needs by letting you combine SAP and non-SAP data across data vendors, cloud providers, and on-premise systems. You can integrate with different data sources and external data products on-the-fly, converging various data sources to draw holistic and informed learnings from your comprehensive business data. No need to extract and export data to a central location. Access business-ready and varied data from all systems in one place, giving you diverse information in your hand about your customer’s likes/dislikes, helping build a more thoughtful and relevant hyper-personalization campaign.
Scalability: Datasphere delivers scalable access to mission-critical business data. It can easily handle large amounts of data without diminishing performance. It will leverage the scalability & elasticity of the cloud-based environment to move resources up or down as needed, plus scale the storage and computing resources to meet the demands of your ever-growing data volume. Leverage Datasphere to extend your existing data investments to the cloud and rapidly integrate SAP and non-SAP data. Higher capacity will make it easier to handle large volumes of customer data, meaning more information to factor in your hyper-personalization campaigns.
Analytic Model: Datasphere lets you harmonize diverse data into a business semantic model of your data landscape. The Analytic Model of SAP Datasphere allows semantically rich and multi-dimensional modeling to answer business queries easily and more efficiently. Complex calculation models can be built while helping with lineage analysis. Build new data models to enrich semantic-type information, preview the data, and even create a story in SAC. A rich analysis of vast amounts of diverse and complex customer data in near real-time supports hyper-personalization campaigns fast.
Catalog Data: Data cataloging automatically discovers, manages, and governs data. It helps to discover, organize, and curate metadata, besides connecting to multiple data sources (such as SAC) and enabling users to maintain, search, classify, and enrich all the organizational data assets with ease. Search and filter capability make it easier to find data, profile data, run data quality rules, improve understanding of lineage & relationships between data assets, define strategic goals, and establish a common understanding of data across the Enterprise. The ability to do all this influence how soon you can get started and execute your hyper-personalization initiatives.
Data Governance: Datasphere governance capabilities help discover data, which includes crawling, profiling, organizing, linking, and enriching the data. This makes it easier to browse and search the data. Datasphere governance capabilities organize the data, meaning you can classify, organize, and understand the data, be it location, quality, attributes, sensitivity, lineage, etc. much more seamlessly. Furthermore, you can curate the data, wherein you get to enforce centralized security and authorization to control data quality standards. All this gets the right data to the right resource to go with the right campaign for the right customer at the right channel to improve the impact of your hyper-personalization campaigns.
Self-service and democratization: SAP Datasphere empowers Line of Business (LoB) users for ad-hoc analysis. Inclusive, seamless, and user-friendly access to authoritative and trusted data, with self-service visualizations and data modeling allows casual users to consume data in an intuitive and actionable format through stories. This elevates self-sufficiency by lowering IT dependency and creating business flexibility to disruptive market changes. New analytical data scenarios can be developed in Data Builder, independent of IT. Improved self-service improves the ability to drive meaningful insights from data assets, leading to accelerated decisions in time-sensitive personalization campaigns.
Relevant and Contextual: Fetch and consolidate trusted data from multiple sources, letting organizations create a unified data architecture, that delivers meaningful insights fast without losing business context. The likelihood of losing critical contextual insights while migrating data between systems or spending countless manual hours recapturing insights through dedicated IT projects, will not be a problem. Datasphere retains original context, helping pull relevant learnings that retain value, reducing the gap between insights and action in your hyper-personalization campaign.
How does CAR help with hyper-personalization?
CAR helps businesses grasp customer profiles through a holistic view – picking up behavioral, demographic, psychographic, and geographic data. This helps businesses connect to customers through contextual messaging to create more value and deliver a more gratifying shopping experience right where they want it. Get more customer-centric using the SAP CAR solution.
Promotion Management: SAP Promotion Management is a comprehensive solution that helps businesses create and advertise the most enticing offers to consumers. This module within CAR helps to accelerate promotion planning and implementation by facilitating seamless alignment between the decision-makers in different teams across the organization. Key features include:
- Support advertising, merchandising, marketing, and administration
- Manage campaigns for different markets in-line with customer preferences
- Create new offers or tweak existing ones including description, offer name, personalized target groups, etc.
- Use the planning workbench to view promotional activities occurring during a specific period
In addition to personalization, CAR can also be used for:
Assortment Planning: SAP Assortment Planning lets businesses finalize the number of products and their corresponding quantities for the sales season based on a consumer’s purchasing history across different product categories and selling locations. Location clustering, assortment listing, option planning, and sales protection functionalities help decide the optimum units for each product.
- Predict sales demand for each assortment product based on historical demand
- Support information-driven planning tightly integrated with your prescribed budgets
- Use real-time analytics to craft assortment plans, powered by the predictive analytic engine
- Acquire Regular sales data and Promotional sales data as per product and locations
- Reduce inventory costs, streamline purchasing, and maximize sales margins
Allocation Management: Retailers get to assign product quantities to eligible stores based on their sales performance and their potential. SAP Allocation Management for Retail provides intuitive tools to support the selection of stores that must receive the merchandise and the appropriate allocation quantities for these stores to cover the consumer demand for a given period.
- Configure customer-specific business scenarios to launch new articles
- Allocate promotional merchandise as per the forecast, store inventory, and capacity
- Simplify, rapidly review, and easily manage the entire allocation process
- Satisfy consumer demands in every location to the highest extent
Replenishment Management: Businesses can leverage the forecasting capabilities of the Unified Demand Forecast (UDF) in SAP CAR to realize precise demand prediction, reduce stock spoilage, ensure optimum product levels at the right time, and meet consumer expectations better. This helps to provide insights into shopper behavior through predictive analytics and generates a unified prediction of future daily demands to enable retailers to cater to customer demand.
- Respond to demand changes with intraday forecast and replenishment
- Use the current stock situation to accurately predict the required quantities of a product
- Calculate required quantities using previous goods movements and sales at instore POS
- Replenish in-demand products on time helps to cater to consumer demands better
Applexus went further and improved the SAP CAR's business value through our 3 add-ons:
Improve reconciliation for various types of transactions and payments, making it faster and more accurate using the Store Reconciliation add-on. Improve payment reconciliation accuracy for credit cards, checks, gift cards & other payment types and reduce costs for third-party reconciliation processors with the Payment Reconciliation add-on. Furthermore, leverage the inherent capabilities of the CAR Analytics add-on such as Price Optimization, Affinity/Market Basket Analysis, etc. to collect Systematic insights, improve pricing strategies, and understand customer purchasing patterns.
How does S/4HANA help with hyper-personalization?
S/4HANA helps organizations gain instantaneous holistic insights about their customers, which then helps to deliver contextual information and create a hyper-personalized experience. Analyzing granular data about your target segment helps to individualize messaging, improve sales, and drive more revenues and profits. Get more relevant with each customer through SAP S/4HANA.
S/4HANA for Service: Brands get to improve brand loyalty and Increase Customer Lifetime Value (CLV) by providing a personalized omnichannel after-sales experience that anticipates and addresses unique needs at any touchpoint. Gather feedback with customer service capabilities and resolve grievances quicker through SAP S/4HANA Cloud.
- Get all the information at your fingertips – customer master data, service history, and more
- Both field service teams and front-line agents get access to holistic customer data
- Perform intricate analytics across the entire portfolio of services
- Use Machine Learning to classify, categorize, prioritize, route, and analyze incoming service requests
- Provide intelligent recommendations to quickly resolve issues and close tickets
S/4HANA Embedded Analytics: Embedded analytics in SAP S/4HANA has the power to deliver real-time data to help decision-makers drive innovation and deliver personalized customer engagement using a complete set of customer-specific variables. Collecting more data helps to know your customers better, and that then results in more personalized service.
- Offers predefined business content - KPIs, reports, queries, predictive, and planning scenarios
- Data access, Data visualization, data persistency, and data modeling
- Features tools to create customer-specific analytics-driven content
- Access real-time transactional data and historical data of every customer
How Applexus can help with Datasphere, CAR, and S/4HANA?
Applexus, as an SAP-certified Expert Partner and Co-innovation Partner, has the right blend of industry and SAP expertise, tools, competent resources, accelerators, and methodologies to help organizations realize hyper-personalization through Datasphere, CAR, or S/4HANA. Our unique approach and deep domain expertise will help future-proof your ecosystem to deliver effective hyper-personalization.
Our superior analytical and predictive solutions leverage Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning to build a data-driven workplace that can derive and act on insights in real-time to make precise predictions that help create an individualized and relevant experience for the target audience. Applexus helps organizations use granular-level data intelligently to realize effective personalization.
Applexus knits together the power of AI, analytics, big data, adaptive processes, and SAP offerings to help businesses tap into customer preferences and anticipate demands. Applexus helps incorporate predictive algorithms and other SAP technologies to improve operational efficiency, improve working capital, reduce wastage, and generate more returns from the marketing dollars. Applexus provides:
- Strong focus on driving low-risk & progressive transformation and value realization
- Continuously develops add-ons and SAP-related cloud-based products
- Thought leadership across various industry verticals
- Immense SAP expertise across the technology landscape to deliver a tailored solution
- Team of industry veterans with end-to-end business and SAP knowledge
Hyper-personalization enables brands to offer a more connected experience to customers across multiple touchpoints and modernization is the key to achieving it. It enables brands to offer a better service in exchange for critical private data. Underequipped Enterprises with minimal tech and legacy processes rarely succeed and very often witness more pitfalls in their customer engagement activities.
Positioning your business to win the hyper-personalization battle requires digital transformation initiatives around ERP S/4HANA, POS-Consolidation through CAR, eCommerce, and Marketing & Analytics. Datasphere will unlock insights into operations, business data, and consumer data. Businesses can opt for intelligent technologies enclosed with AI, ML, and other capabilities to make informed decisions, bridge the gap, and create relevant messaging from their data estate.
Deploying SAP Datasphere, CAR, and S/4HANA are some high-impact & valuable technologies that help build initiatives to gain a deeper understanding of customers to deliver personalized experiences. These solutions lay the foundation for data-driven decision-making and enable organizations to harness holistic and real-time learning from disparate data types & sources, empowering your team to build customer-centric campaigns for higher customer engagement and satisfaction.
Applexus is uniquely positioned to facilitate your hyper-personalization journey with deep Retail and Fashion experience along with our extensive experience in SAP Datasphere and SAP CAR.
1 Flavin S and Heller J, May 2019, A technology blueprint for personalization at scale, McKinsey, https://www.mckinsey.com/capabilities/growth-marketing-and-sales/our-insights/a-technology-blueprint-for-personalization-at-scale
2 Dencheva V, January 2023, Attitudes towards marketing content personalization in the United States, Statista, https://www.statista.com/statistics/808313/personalization-marketing-perspectives/