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Most retailers have tons of consumer digital data with little idea of how to use it. Of course, they want to leverage it to boost sales, but few know how to use it to build customer equity.

If you are wondering what is ‘Customer equity’, it can be summed as the total lifetime value from all current and potential clientele, according to Harvard Business Review. In fact, it has surpassed brand equity as the most important factor in a company’s valuation. Companies are now using the digital data on hand to augment customer lifetime value (CLV), which is termed as customer centric behavior.

However, this is an ongoing process, and one where companies have to first understand their customer inside-out. Only then can they craft a customer-centric experience that will boost loyalty. Here are some steps to help them get started:

  1. Listen, listen, listen

Most data in any company is often in silos and pulling it out from these compartments to share with the relevant teams can be akin to looking for a needle in a haystack. Hence, it is important to keep in mind what will be ultimately done with the information. Having open-ended goals for information collection will only end up in creating a data lake.

  1. Personalize as much as is possible 

Think from your customer’s perspective to see how you can reduce friction across various touchpoints while collecting data and yet have a smoother experience. Rather than using homogenized solutions, try to opt for customized options that allow for personalization so you can map what you want from the technology. Take a closer look at your resources in hand before creating a data framework, so that you don’t end up biting off more than you can chew.

  1. Keep things practical

Often, data has many errors, which is usually because those creating the framework lack clarity about why it is being created or gathered. Get your own people on board, before you embark on a customer-centric journey.  Once they better understand how the data sets being gathered will help in creating and fostering customer relationships, it will better assist in building customer equity.