Clients are always looking for the same thing. They don’t want to learn how to actually program; they need a business solution.
Karim Marucchi is CEO and Co-Founder of Crowd Favorite, a client services firm specializing in enterprise-grade digital strategy and elite open source software. Over the past 20 years he has taken companies public, managed mergers and acquisitions, and led professional service organizations across the globe.
In this episode of Velocitize Talks, Marucchi discusses what the future holds for data collection, the benefits of WordPress, and the role of open-source software.
Collecting data the smart way (2:41)
The larger the enterprise, the more the data is distributed among different systems. Clients are having a hard time bringing that data back together.
Customer data collection can happen in a variety of ways, but a brand’s data is only as good as its ability to interpret that data. In other words, it needs to be used in a way that leads to business growth. Information about customers, providers, partners, and staff can produce beneficial data. But over half of the data collected by companies is known as “dark data”—data collected but not used.
Having data siloed in all these disparate systems can make it hard to manage. As a result, silos can result in all sorts of data problems, blocking a brand’s business growth. Brands can make the most of their data by using software like the cloud-based Integration Platforms as a Service (iPaaS) solution.
Open source policy (3:52)
We’ve been bolting on other open source products to create an overlay UX that is very familiar to WordPress users to take them through the entire digital experience so they’re not tied down to the traditional architecture.
In Marucchi’s opinion, open source is the reason the web is changing. In the WP Engine documentary make|SHIFT, he shares the story of this digital transformation. He also stresses the importance of open-source software in collaborating within the digital community.
Crowd Favorite has found that companies of all sizes work with open source-based platforms due to its flexibility and customization. In WordPress, anyone can access the source code for the system. This makes it easy to download plugins and themes.
Privacy, please (7:28)
We’re all familiar with what’s going on with GDPR these days because they’re taking it so much more seriously in Europe than they are here. What you can see happening are innovations around the customer experience of dealing with their data.
Since the implementation of GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) in 2018, European companies have had to deal with user data in new ways. These regulations have led to innovation in UX (user experience) design in how they collect visitor data.
That said, U.S. companies will need to learn how to comply with a number of other state and industry data privacy regulations. One is the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), which was modeled on GDPR.
How may I assist you? (8:57)
The next step is going to be having your voice assistant run through the data it knows about you and not only give you the answer that you specifically asked, but also a lot more than just a buying suggestion.
Digital voice assistants have become commonplace in consumer’s lives. These virtual assistants are a key component of the smart device industry. They’re absolutely integral to the way that consumers interact with their devices.
According to Juniper Research, there will be 8.4 billion digital voice assistants in use by 2024. Good voice assistants will do something when you ask them to. A great voice assistant won’t need asking.
Right now, AI (Artificial Intelligence) assistants are still at this first stage. Users can get the song they want or set a timer, but typically only when explicitly requested. But as people get more comfortable with voice assistants, AI will pave the way to move beyond purely reactive devices to proactive, personalized ones.
Do your research (10:00)
Our most established clients are starting to realize that to keep that market position they need to do a little bit of R&D.
As brands look to the future, they are realizing how important it is to truly know their customers. This enables a brand to maintain ongoing business success, and implement new customer acquisition and retention strategies. It also allows them to make informed customer-centric decisions. For example, Research-as-a-Service (RaaS) is on the rise due to the need to gather human insight—and fast.
For more information on Crowd Favorite, check out their website and follow them on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter at @crowdfavorite. To stay up to date with Marucchi, follow him on his personal website.
This interview was originally recorded at WP Engine Summit 2018 and has been updated accordingly.