Data to boost growth

JM Tieto, which is part of Alma Media, has boosted its sales figures with business intelligence (BI) technologies.

Big data and business intelligence haven taken a more central role in customer relationship management and customer experience. JM Tieto, which operates with Kauppalehti and was acquired by Alma at the beginning of 2015, has developed a model for managing customers' sales and marketing using systematically gathered and constantly updated data. 

"We facilitate the growth of sales. We help companies to identify and reach the best customers and to allocate their resources so that the best results can be achieved," says JM Tieto's Senior Consultant Riikka-Maria Lemminki.

"We carry out analyses to find the right direction, i.e. the most profitable customers; we use information service solutions to build a solid foundation for sales and marketing operations, our marketing services create movement and visibility among the target customers and the system helps to manage the entire package. Direction, foundation, movement and management."

Growth potential as basis

At JM Tieto, the process typically starts with helping a company to identify its current customers, who they are and what they are like, and what share of the market the company holds. The analyses combine the customers' invoicing data with data generated by Kauppalehti Tietopalvelut. With this information it is possible to classify the existing customers according to their potential in euros, and not by what they currently bring in. This is also the time to identify any background variables that affect the customer's potential and which can be used for selecting a group of customers that matches the targets.

lahti_uutishuone

Specialists from both JM Tieto and Kauppalehti's Tietopalvelut, including JM Tieto's Executive Director Marko Viljanen, at the Lahti office. From left: Riikka-Maria Lemminki, Tuire Viljanen, Mervi Hyvönen, Marko Kekäläinen, Tomi Kaitarinne and Timo Puolakka.

"There may be a customer that is only invoiced for 5,000 euros while the potential could be 25,000 euros. In other words, this customer is not getting enough attention. We help the sales team to direct their efforts on the right customers and take the right action," Lemminki explains.

"We help our customers build the customer relationship they're aiming for, and our marketing and sales operations constantly support these efforts. It's vital to remember that data becomes outdated, which is why we need to create a solution where customer data is updated automatically. We talk about information service solutions, which means integrating Kauppalehti's Päättäjät ja vaikuttajat database with the customer's CRM system or introducing our own CRM system. Sometimes we choose the latter option if the customers' systems are inflexible or if they need to update their IT systems."

Once the foundation is in order, JM Tieto starts discussing the required marketing and marketing communications operations with the customer – such as what kind of messages they want to send, and to whom, and how to reach customers through digital channels, how they can be activated, and how to handle contacts over the phone. 

konekesko__uutishuone

Konekesko's Sales Manager Urho Voutilainen and Riikka-Maria Lemminki have met up several times.

"We help them integrate their marketing with sales. We provide them with a model that they can use and develop themselves," Lemminki describes the process.

If the customer has insufficient resources, JM Tieto's call centre in Tampere and the digital marketing unit in Lahti can help them in finding sales leads. 

Long-term targets

It was only five years ago when companies still had numerous different systems: separate systems for email, CRM, ERP, an online store, the first automated marketing solutions and so on. According to Lemminki, we are starting to understand how expensive running all these separate systems can be and how they create gaps between organisations.

"We have quite a few competitors, actually: advertising agencies, technology companies, data services companies and call centres, to name a few. But very few of these can offer a similar package that can be adapted to the customer's existing systems and business processes," says Lemminki.

JM Tieto wants to be a strategic partner in improving its customers' businesses. The sales team receives new leads quite soon after the launch, but it usually takes about six months before any results can be measured. With some customers, future operations can be planned up to five years ahead.  

JM Tieto Oy

Founded in 1996

Staff: around 30 in Helsinki, Lahti and Tampere

Key customer groups: industry, wholesale sector as well as ICT and specialist services

JM Tieto was acquired by Alma Media Oyj in 2015.

Date: 26 January 2016

Text by Diana Törnroos

Photos by JM Tieto