In this edition of Interviews With Brilliant People, we are joined by Jaime Brugueras, founder and CEO of Mineful, a company that helps businesses retain potentially lost customers through analytical analysis and data without “actionable insight” reports. Jaime’s expertise and experience with data and analytical measurements has brought the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Allstate Insurance, and Starcom Worldwide to his door asking about his services.
Retaining customers, or convincing dissatisfied customers that your product or service deserves another chance, can be extremely hard. While we were brainstorming ideas to solve this problem, Jaime had already proven his Mineful system worked. That’s definitely the sign of a brilliant thinker.
Q: What is Mineful and where did the idea originate?
Jaime Brugueras: Mineful helps companies use data to retain customers, with no reports. It’s an analytical application that takes action when it identifies patterns of disloyalty and dissatisfaction. Mineful integrates with major CRM and e-commerce platforms, uses its algorithms to detect customers at risk, and then provides the communication tools needed to entice customers to buy back from you. If customer retention is important for your organization, Mineful is right for you.
As marketing analysts, we’ve realized there is a huge gap between analytics and actual benefits to a company. Part of the problem is that the output of business intelligence solutions is usually a chart or report. Just looking at charts simply won’t help your business. The idea partly came from our clients when we were consulting. They would ask for alerts when a metric hit a threshold or when a customer rated their product poorly. Clients just kept saying the word “Alert.”
Alerts are the future of how we will digest information, if it is not here already. When using your smartphone, you get alerted from different applications. Twitter alerts you when you get a mention, a game alerts you when it’s your turn, and banks alert you when your balance is below a certain level. You see, already, we want to digest information on a “need to know” basis because time is very valuable. Businesses can take this alert approach to monitor many parts of their business including: customer loyalty, marketing ROI, inventory levels, and employee satisfaction.
Q: How is Mineful different than the standard analytics program?
Jaime Brugueras: Dashboard reports are a thing of the past. Data on reports gets lost in the aggregate and no one has time to check these reports every day. Mineful uses PhD-level data mining algorithms to determine which customers are likely to leave or need your attention. There are no charts or reports; just a list of customers that are at risk and tools to do something about it.
Many business intelligence tools talk about “actionable insights.” We provide action based on insight. We give our users buttons to act on their data, not just a chart. Our tool is also very intuitive that anyone from a brick and mortar retail store to Target can find it useful.
In summary, Mineful is different in five ways:
- Takes action
- Individual engagement with the customer
- Alerts of important issues
- Math-powered: pre-built predictive algorithms that recognizes pattern of bad behavior
- Easy to use/easy to get setup
- Affordable for the small business (Utility-based pricing means the price is based on amount of data)
Q: Your website, newsletter and introductory video use the term “actionable insights” frequently, and often as more of a buzz word than useful feedback. Can you expand on this concept and discuss Mineful’s philosophy on “actionable insights?”
Jaime Brugueras: We make fun of this phrase because everyone in our industry uses it. We do not offer “actionable insights.” Mineful offers actions based on insight. We believe that charts and reports fall short of producing results. So if you’re ready to take your CRM, sales, and customer data to the next level, go to our website to learn more how Mineful can help you Act on the UnexpectedTM and achieve real results.
Q: Without divulging too much, what are some of the most common issues you’ve observed with business intelligence among e-commerce clients, and are there any growing business intelligence trends (good or bad) you’ve noticed?
Jaime Brugueras: There are five common issues I’ve observed with business intelligence for e-commerce clients:
– Data integration – While there has been constant effort in order to streamline various data platforms, the fact is that there is still too much data available in various formats and on different platforms that just do not talk to each other.
– Delivery needs – The delivery needs of different users vary depending on the level and function that the individual is handling. For example, while a sales manager at Arizona may need drilled down data pertaining to his region, the national sales manager would obviously need to see the larger picture that includes sales data from all regions.
– Complicated – Here again, while it is believed that business intelligence tools need to be used by the end user, most of the BI tools available today are relatively complex and require some level of programming knowledge to process.
– Lack of action – Most business intelligence tools are only good to deliver charts and reports without providing any level of predictive data or alerts with regards to trends or events that need to be looked into.
– Too expensive – Last but not the least, the business intelligence software tools that do have solutions to the issues mentioned above are extremely expensive. These solutions are extremely difficult for small and medium sized companies to purchase and use.
Q: Becoming a leader in any industry, especially Internet marketing and business solutions, requires the ability to recognize a problem or trend before it reaches its climax point. What have you learned about your own business intelligence and abilities as a leader through the success of Mineful?
Jaime Brugueras: Like you say, the ability is in “skating where the puck is going” not where it is. What I’ve learned most is that being a “me too” product with better service or more features simply won’t entice anyone to start using your product or change their current solution. The best thing we’ve done is talk to as many leads, clients, and people in our industry in order to figure out where the current solution falls short. Although we started with a good idea, it was this feedback that shaped and currently shaping the future of Mineful.
Q: Who should we interview next?
Jaime Brugueras: Brian Crummy, president FlowerPetal, Mark Lawrence, president SpotHero, and Jessica Kim, president of Babbaco would be great.