Rob Walker, Pega’s VP of Decision Management (who joined Pega as part of the Chordiant acquisition), gave a keynote on day 2 of PegaWORLD about next best action. He started with a great visual of the analysis of a particular baseball pitcher’s stats, showing that there was some degree of predictability of what type of pitch (e.g., fastball, slider) will occur after an initial pitch of each type. In other words, if you knew those statistics, you would have a better chance of being prepared for a particular type of pitch once you were smoked by that initial fastball. Sticking to a baseball theme, he moved on to talk about the concepts behind Moneyball: using statistics to build a better team than you can with beliefs and biases. In other words, more data and a lot of analysis can give you a competitive advantage, an idea that holds value far beyond the realm of baseball.
He spoke about adding in all of that extra data and analytics to the customer view as “color” being added to the picture in order to make details more evident throughout the lifecycle. This can, for example, allow you to detect when a customer is likely to defect to a competitor based on their service history and behavior, or what new services that they are most likely to buy at a given time. Bring this next-best-action marketing to the Pega unified marketing portfolio, and you have this capability baked right into your processes and multi-channel customer communications. Instead of using an inside-out strategy of trying to determine the right market to target for a specific product, this allows for an outside-in strategy of maximizing the value of a specific customer through understanding their propensities, and doing it fast enough to make the next best offer in real time, while they are on your website or on the phone with your customer service or sales rep.