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Episode 08

Improving Customer Engagement with Unified Data

In this episode, Pepe Valiente, Senior Management Consultant at IBM Garage, talks about the risks of digital transformations and the importance of personalization, simplicity, and privacy for the customer experience.

Guest speaker: Pepe Valiente

Over fifteen years of program and project management experience delivering complex initiatives within multiple industries including aerospace, electronics, consulting, electrical, software, and retail. In addition, experience in Management of Acquisitions and Integrations for International Companies (Market Research, Commercial Analysis, Financial Analysis, Due Diligence, Negotiation, and Integrations).

At IBM Garage, Pepe is responsible for managing this platform through initiatives that generate value from the early stages of the process to its implementation, ensuring scalability and world-class standards.

Episode summary

This episode features an interview with Pepe Valiente, Senior Management Consultant at IBM Garage. As a competitive dragon boat steerer, Pepe is used to interpreting data from the elements and his team to stay on course. He translates this skill into consulting strategies by breaking down data into valuable pieces. 

In this episode, Kailey and Pepe discuss why digital transformations fail, how our brains react to personalization, and why simplicity is key to customer experience.  

Key takeaways

  • Customers do not expect you to be perfect. So long as you’re improving your strategy day by day and daring to try new things, customers will judge your intention.

  • Digital transformations are risky business, with about 70% of them failing. This happens because there isn’t a clear understanding of why a digital transformation is being implemented in the first place. To be successful, you have to agree on what technology to use, friction points you’re trying to eradicate, and what the customer wants.

  • Personalization, simplicity, and privacy are key to creating a top-tier customer experience. Personalization creates a chemical reaction in the brain that translates to trust within a company. Simplicity helps customers understand that their needs are being met. And privacy compliance ensures that customers trust the brand and will continue doing business with them.

Speaker quotes

“When we include the person's name in our communication, that creates chemical reactions in our brain that makes us feel good. That may create some excitement and unconscious signals that create empathy, trust. The importance of personalization translates into how much we care about our user.” – Pepe Valiente

Episode timestamps

‍*(01:49) - Pepe’s career journey and dragon boat background

*(06:28) - Pepe’s role at IBM Garage

*(11:47) - Trends in customer experience from a consulting perspective

*(24:44) - Why 70% of digital transformations fail

*(26:19) - How Pepe defines “good data”

‍*(32:11) - An example of another company doing it right with customer experience (hint: it’s American Express)

*(37:45) - Pepe’s recommendations for upleveling your consulting strategy with data

Connect with Pepe on LinkedIn

Connect with Kailey on LinkedIn

The views and opinions expressed are personal and do not represent IBM’s point of view.