Consumer insights fuel Lenovo’s exceptional customer experience

By Kelly LeVoyer, Marketing Editorial Director, SAS

Editor’s note: In this Analytical Marketing series, learn how a few dynamic executives at top brands have led their organizations into the modern world of data-driven marketing.

The big data movement had a big impact on marketing at Lenovo.

So much so, it helped spur an initiative to centralize its consumer insights to uncover new opportunities and improve the end-to-end customer experience. Lenovo’s Customer Insight Center of Excellence became the initiative’s nerve center and arms the company’s marketers with a new level of data and analysis.

“We’re analyzing the voice of the customer by conducting text mining on our brand mentions to help understand sentiment, identify new customer segments, and test how our messaging is resonating,” explains Mohammed Chaara, director of the center.

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Mohammed Chaara
Mohammed Chaara, Director of Customer Insight Center of Excellence, Lenovo

Consumer insights from text

For the uninitiated, text mining uses algorithms to extract insights from unstructured text that can come from a variety of sources including emails, blog posts, tweets and text from other social media channels. One of the biggest benefits of text mining are that you can automate the mining to reduce decision time and increase message consistency and effectiveness.

Lenovo’s insight center provides the resources that enable the company to full use of its text mining capabilities. “And this is where all customer feedback data is getting captured. So when you layer this data on top of some of the traditional campaign measures, you get a really rich picture of your market. This has fundamentally changed how marketing operates. Now the majority of our product meetings start with customer insights and those insights drive the actions,” Chaara says.

Product innovation from consumer insights

Mining customer data helps provide input into potential new product features – and also helps marketers understand what resonates about current products with their target audiences so the messaging can be refined. “We might discover that a certain series of laptops has a passionate set of gaming users even though that’s not the primary way we market that product. Tapping into that will help our marketers connect emotionally with our customers.”

Lenovo’s approach represents a centralized model that provides analytics services to the marketing organization along with other business units. The Customer Insight Center of Excellence reports into R&D and, according to Chaara, this works for Lenovo “because it gives us the flexibility to draw from a broader variety of technical solutions.”

But this doesn’t mean Lenovo’s marketers are off the hook for knowing about data and analytics: “Marketers must still know how to take advantage of the data, and be able to work iteratively with us, to find new ways to combine and analyze data and make new discoveries.”

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