Jonathan Taylor, CTOBeing a lover of sports, Jonathan Taylor, CTO of SmartFocus admires the ambitious goals often set by football managers like Alex Ferguson and Bill Belichick. “Both have a philosophy of helping players build a strong foundation. In the same way, to build a strong foundation for the company it is necessary to innovate strong technology, have great people around, and have a straight forward vision,” says Taylor. Adhering to this philosophy, Taylor drives the technology and strategy with his friend and leader Rob Mullen, CEO of SmartFocus. The philosophy aided Jonathan to craft intelligent Cloud solutions to redefine context-driven marketing and put an end to marketers asking the com¬mon questions, why aren’t our campaigns engaging our customer base? Why is our revenue decreasing when marketing efforts have doubled? Mobile commerce is becoming the norm, how can we keep up?
Headquartered in London, UK, SmartFocus has capabilities to provide context-aware marketing for the mobile world. “Our technology helps organizations truly know their customers and engage them with the right message, at the perfect moment, wherever they are—in store and online, across all of their preferred channels,” says Taylor. SmartFocus is an innovator in contextualized and personalized messages. “Our exclusive platform includes the next generation of “virtual beacon” technology that knows when a customer visits a physical store without the infrastructure overheads,” he adds.
SmartFocus in integration with Hybris allows SAP customers to smoothly and quickly provide personalized omni-channel engagements to its customers. The Hadoop based data store of the company allows customers to interact with all of their data and gain actionable insights. An example of this is Recency, Frequency and Monetary (RFM) value scores to power the rules and algorithms to ensure optimal customer engagements. SmartFocus also has an enhanced solution platform Hybris’ commerce software can use to ensure the Stock Keeping Unit (SKU’s) are modeled against customer profile data (RFM, Propensity and Affinity) to drive the recommendation and personalizations for each and every customer. In addition, the voucher redemption codes from Hybris can be used in the SmartFocus environment to match redemptions across all channels.
We smoothly and quickly provide personalized omni-channel engagements to our customers
For an elaborate understanding of SmartFocus’ solutions consider the example of an SAP customer that wanted to use beacons and the SmartFocus mobile proximity marketing platform to deliver offers, push notifications to their customers and an in-app competition. The customer also wanted a solution that would tie in different marketing channels, providing a seamless in-store and digital experience. The client received a SmartFocus beacon enabled iOS app called Summer Treats, with real-time offers sent to users’ phones via beacon technology. The app included offers, an in-app competition and the ability to push marketing messages. SmartFocus also provided beacons to place in three stores in Birmingham. “We helped them decide on a strategy of placing the beacons, the ranging for each beacon and a plan to target customers wherever they were,” affirms Taylor.
The company uses rules and algorithmic based approach that reads the most up-to-date internal data as well as social data to calculate the optimal engagement to deliver value, foster innovation and helps minimizing risk. “Our enhanced machine learning and natural language processing has the ability to read forty different languages and understand context ensuring effective use of social unstructured data. It also ensures effective and timely engagements based on the usage of accurate interpretation of customer input and that makes SmartFocus completely unique in the market,” notes Taylor.
The next step for SmartFocus is the ability to deliver Virtual Beacons which they believe will change the industry. The company also wants to execute in-door proximity marketing without sensors. “We are also now moving to neural nets to drive our recommendation and our re-targeting engines to an even higher degree,” concludes Taylor.