By David J. Blumberg, founder & managing partner, Blumberg Capital

One of the biggest challenges that companies face is understanding customers and meeting and exceeding high expectations.

Customer satisfaction and loyalty are important factors in the long-term success of a business. It’s critical that organizations of all sizes can deliver on the evolving needs of their customer base.

This looks different depending on the industry. In marketing, customer success means continuously deepening the relationship and providing additional value. In an increasingly data centric world, customers demand insights based on better analysis of the data. For financial services, customers have high expectations and almost no room for error, so it’s essential cybersecurity vendors can continuously authenticate users throughout the transaction.

Leaders from our portfolio companies Braze, Parse.ly and BioCatch shared their thoughts on the industry challenges they’re facing and the fundamental need to understand customers:

Bill Magnuson, co-founder & CEO at Braze:

“Competition for customer acquisition, engagement, and loyalty is fiercer than ever. Time and attention is an increasingly scarce resource, and each year we find that humans are demanding more from the brands that they welcome into their lives.

To engage customers, earn their loyalty, and create valuable long-term relationships with them, you need the right team, technology and data infrastructure to gain a real-time understanding of your customers and act on it. When done well, this combination allows brands to deliver relevant and memorable experiences that exceed their customer’s expectations, creating valuable relationships along the way.”

Learn more about Braze.

Sachin Kamdar, co-founder & CEO, Parse.ly:

“We are a data and analytics company, but data actually is one of the biggest problems out there. There’s not a shortage or dearth of data – in fact, there’s more data that you could look at than ever before and it’s growing at an exponential rate.

The problem isn’t data, the problem is answers – how do we get the right answers to the core questions about how I can reach my customers? How can we make sure that they resonate with my core messaging, my core content, my core branding? How can I turn that into something that I can repeat again and again and again?

The biggest path forward to overcoming those challenges is applying machine learning. What machine learning has the capability to do for this industry is take that vast amount of data and unearth the regular patterns that show ‘hey this is a pattern that is actually working, we think that it’s repeatable in this way, shape or form and here’s how you can work with that time and time again.’”

Learn more about Parse.ly.

Howard Edelstein, CEO, BioCatch:

“We have an industry that is emerging and we have an industry that we’re used to. The banking industry, the financial services industry has been around for a long time. It’s very binary. You have a password or you don’t. They know you or they don’t. You have an SMS code or you don’t. In this new world things are much more about managing risk. In order to manage risk, you have to have other parameters – you can’t just be reliant on a phone or a password.

Knowing how someone behaves and deploying behavioral biometrics in a financial institution or an eCommerce or credit card company is really important because otherwise, you have no sure way of authenticating somebody. The hurdle is getting the existing population of technology and mindset to embrace this.

Financial institutions need to come to grips with the fact that behavior is a layer of defense that they haven’t used before and it’s also an opportunity through which they can enhance customer service and give a digital experience that’s very meaningful.”

To truly understand customer behavior and serve customers across industries, businesses need to know what drives them on a basic level.  What are their actual needs now and into the future? This offers a baseline understanding that companies can then build upon to provide great experiences to customers, increase customer success and grow revenue.

Learn more about BioCatch.

To hear more from our portfolio companies on the challenges they’re facing, watch our latest video here.