Digital transformation can be a complex process, but if done well, it can give companies a huge advantage over their competition. Take these transformation initiatives for example:
Keller Williams (KW) is the world’s largest real estate franchise. The company’s sales results and the number of units sold make it the no. 1 real estate franchise in the USA. Keller Williams’ digital transformation journey started in 2015. That was when KW decided to build proprietary software on their own, which diminished the need of depending on third-party solutions. As a result of this decision, an innovation hub – KW Labs – was launched in 2017. It was dedicated to transforming Keller Williams into a tech company.
KW owns a huge collection of data and the company uses it to help agents all around the world make informed decisions by empowering them with AI-powered apps like a virtual assistant (a Siri for real estate agents), CRM system, or brilliant property search engine. These solutions support agents in their daily work and enable them to do their job the best they can by providing hyper-local market analysis, suggesting right offer parameters, or estimating the probability of closing a deal.
Unilever is one of the biggest providers of household goods and groceries has 2.5 billion daily customers. Unilever employs 161,000 people, runs 300 factories in 190 different countries, and owns 400-plus household brands. Their digital transformation started when the company realized their customers become more and more tech-savvy, and they expected the brand to meet their expectations by moving presence, attention, and communication into digitized channels.
Unilever decided to build data analytics infrastructure and an advanced platform to facilitate communication with its consumers and make it easier to build connections and relationships by conversations. To make sure this process was effective and efficient, the company needed to gather a vast collection of data – in 2019 it amassed 900 million individual consumer records, up from 200 million the year before.
Then, Unilever leveraged machine learning technologies to segment consumers based on their preferences and use programmatic, data-driven marketing to target them with a relevant message in digital channels.
The Home Depot – In 2017, the largest home improvement retailer in the United States committed to a bold digital transformation strategy. It planned to optimize its in-store and online shopping experiences, creating a seamless experience for customers across all channels. The company employed 1,000 new IT professionals to complete the transformation and leveraged data analytics to gain greater customer insights.
In two years, Home Depot’s revenue grew by over $17 billion, and the company was able to make cost savings by analyzing local trends and optimizing inventory levels.
Microsoft – Increasingly aware of the competitive pressure from its rivals, Apple and Amazon, Microsoft transformed its business from the ground up. The company implemented a customized data analytics solution, Microsoft Sales Experience (MSX), to help sales representatives calculate the probability of winning or losing an account. This allowed employees to tailor their offers more effectively and focus on the most promising accounts. The data from MSX was also integrated with the company’s CRM system, providing insights to departments across the business.
Nike – When the sports giant felt it was losing its competitive edge, Nike implemented a range of transformation initiatives. The company made changes to enhance its supply chain, improve its brand, understand its customers better, and strengthen its company culture. Data analytics provided the insights that led to the opening of concept stores, improvement in customer experience, and the creation of more membership opportunities. In two years, Nike’s stock price had risen from $52 to $88. Over the same period, the company’s revenue increased from $33.5 billion to $39.1 billion.