The customer journey is vital to success in the age of the customer, and as technology advances, collecting data can help personalize the experience from start to finish. At MARKETING this week, Antonio Sciuto, CMO of Nestlé Waters, will share insight into the company’s brand new ‘war room’ that displays real-time data showing customer journeys and tracking customer touchpoints.

You don’t want to miss Antonio’s talk on Tuesday afternoon. I had the chance to chat with him to get the inside scoop on how he’s leading his organization with a customer-obsessed mindset, from real-time data to customized customer journeys. Here’s what he had to say:

Q: Some may find it hard to see the applicability of customer journey analysis to a product as "simple" as bottled water. When did you first begin focusing on the customer journey? Why?

Antonio Sciuto: Digital is accelerating and changing several aspects of our lives.  In the US consumers are now spending 52% of total time on digital media channels. This is evolving the consumer journey shifting marketing focus from building databases to fostering communities. We aim to offer a seamless brand experience evolving from “simple” bottle water to healthy hydration solutions across all touch-points, online and offline.

The starting point will always be to develop a deep understanding of the consumer while complementing more deliberate traditional market research with the use of more frequent, real-time social media listening and analysis. It’s critical to understand: conversation topics, share of conversation by social platform, tone, consumer sentiment, roles and customer engagement rules by media touchpoint. This understanding is enabling us to define the right opportunities to engage consumers with the right content and calls to action by online and offline touchpoints. As CMO and digital business leader, it’s my mission to enable the organization to build communities around brands and content based on the real needs of our audience, offering them a truly personalized, omni-channel experience.

Q: You are collecting an abundance of real-time data on your customers. How do you determine which data points actually provide actionable insights? How has your answer to that question changed over the past two years?

Sciuto: In today’s digital world, it can be easy for marketers to become infatuated with shiny new objects and multiple set of available data. Business owners should define what success looks like to win in the mapped consumer journey, setting clear business KPIs and then identifying which solution will deliver against the target.

In the last few years, we have focused on big data: building things like databases, consumer segmentation and predictive behavior. All of these initiatives are still relevant, but we need to shift our mindset towards understanding that the best databases are ones that are available at our fingertips (eg. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, etc.). The opportunity is to leverage this new set of data and available marketing cloud solutions to build an integrated view of the consumers and better satisfy their needs.

Q: What improvements to your customer experience have you seen after launching the Nestle Waters eBusiness unit?

Sciuto: At Nestle Waters North America we were able to step-chance our online performance, disproportionally growing our online market share vs. offline. We have a relentless focus on the consumer journey by managing digital operations end-to-end by integrating digital, social media and eCommerce into an eBusiness organization unit. We are accelerating this effort with the establishment of a consumer engagement center that will allow flawless and integrated execution of Social Listening, Data analysis and consumer engagement providing a better consumer experience across all touchpoints.

Not attending MARKETING this year? Check back next week for a recap with key takeaways from this year’s speakers.