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“As a Retailer, one Needs to Invest in Building Relationships and Enhancing Customer Loyalty”

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Talisma Corporation, a wholly owned subsidiary of Campus Management Corporation, is a (CRM) software solutions provider. Talisma solutions improve customer satisfaction by integrating the power of e-mail, phone, chat, SMS text messaging, print, portal, and web self-services. According to the company, Talisma has been helping retailers of all sizes deliver a unique customer experience like driving high-impact campaigns to managing customer loyalty and social media engagement. In conversation with IMAGES Retail, Raj Mruthyunjayappa, MD, APAC & EMEA, Talisma Corporation talks about the company’s business and expansion plans. Excerpts…

Talisma’s operations

Talisma Corporation helps global businesses in over 35 countries engage customers through innovative customer experience initiatives that span channels and interactions. In a world where the customer is becoming increasingly powerful, Talisma has been working extensively with businesses to help them offer more powerful engagement options over transaction channels, products and services.
Talisma India is based in Bengaluru, with offices in Mumbai, Chennai, Delhi, and Kolkata. Headquartered in Boca Raton, Florida, Talisma’s global presence ensures access to exceptional personnel and resources across North America and Asia-Pacific. Since its first product release, Talisma has obtained an impressive global customer base across a variety of vertical markets. Talisma’s vertical solutions ensure leadership through key differentiators that highlight Talisma’s multichannel approach, which helps build profitable customer relationships, increase customer satisfaction and loyalty, and reduce operational costs.

Technology aids retail innovations

In South Korea, you can today complete your grocery purchase online during a typical metro ride and have the goods delivered by the time you reach home. Increasingly, retailers are investing in technologies that make life easier for shoppers through a binding engagement experience. At the core of this experience regime lie two things – strategy and technology. Strategy is the driver while technology is what enables translation of the strategy into experience for the customer.

Role of technology in modern retail

The advent of technology has empowered consumers like never before. The rising presence and reach of the Internet along with prolific growth of smartphones, tablets and other unrelated technologies have provided consumers with unmatched access to information on the go, thereby helping them to make informed purchase decisions. The adoption of digital media is redefining consumer mindsets, patterns of purchase, and decision-making. This in turn is transforming consumer behaviour.

Digital technology will step into the “real” retail space to provide personalised and unique experiences. We can expect the retail space to turn into a hub of exploration, interactivity and creativity. Other key trends include growing use of in-store technology, 4G networks, customer experience and economic scenario.

solutions provided by Talisma to modern retailers

“As a retailer, one needs to constantly invest in building relationships and enhancing customer loyalty. Starting with a unified 360 degree of customer dynamics, businesses need to scale all the way to deliver a consistent and memorable online and store shopping experience to customers. If successful, the efforts will lead to a higher wallet share of the customer and a surge in the number of brand and product advocates. We have a unique product line designed to manage the customer experience needs of retailers under one roof. From driving high-impact campaigns to managing customer loyalty and social media engagement, we offer solutions designed to cover the entire lifecycle of the customer,” says, Raj Mruthyunjayappa.

Customising solutions according to each vertical of retail

Mruthyunjayappa explains: ” Yes, we do look at customisation options. We have point solutions around key areas, such as customer collaboration, social media engagement management, customer behaviour , etc. in our portfolio. These solutions are well primed to meet the unique needs of our customers.”

Target group of customers

The company works with clients across verticals and in the retail space they work with both large and small players.

Measuring RoI on the technology

Talking about measuring RoI on the technology Mruthyunjayappa said: ” Without measuring RoI, it will be difficult for businesses to justify investments in technology. The RoI is measured on parameters such as reduced online shopping time, positive social media traction, improved shopping feedback and improved customer loyalty among other options.”

Effect of  economic slowdown on the retail business globally

Despite the slowdown, retailers have managed to maintain consistency in terms of business growth. Looking at the changing contours of the industry, factors like store rationalisation, working capital management, regionalisation, cost optimisation and manpower management are some key issues for retailers in the current economic situation.

Where do Indian retailers stand in terms of technology adoption?

“We have definitely evolved in terms of technology adoption and retailers now understand its importance to keep pace with changing consumer dynamics. Several companies are creating digital strategies for their brand to generate successful business outcomes. A holistic and integrated strategy comprising consumers, the enterprise ecosystem and channels is the need of the hour to cater to evolving demands and behaviour,” believes Mruthyunjayappa.

Expansion plans

Talking about company’s expanison plans he said: “We plan to add more retailers in the coming fiscal (2014–15). With the release of Talisma 9.0, we are now well primed towards helping retailers take their customer experience goals to a new level.”

Services and products.

“Talisma helps a wide range of global businesses build and sustain relationships with customers, strengthen their brand visibility, and stay competitively relevant. Our solutions help businesses deliver highly personalised engagement options and services across marketing, sales, and service functions and offers powerful tools for staging and measuring marketing campaigns, managing the sales pipeline, increasing revenue, and gaining insight into operational performance and customer needs. Our products are backed by our extensive cross-vertical experience and benchmark consulting and implementation and support services,”concludes Mruthyunjayappa.