IBM has agreed to acquire Tealeaf Technology, which markets customer experience analytics software to large corporations and organizations. The deal's financial terms were not disclosed.
Tealeaf's patented technology can be deployed into any business's current environment with no additional modifications required, said Tealeaf Technology CEO Rebecca Ward. "So they can begin capturing customer data and delivering optimal experiences immediately."
IBM's acquisition, which is subject to customary closing conditions, is intended to bolster Big Blue's smarter commerce initiative, which promises to give companies greater visibility into their supplier relationships. The goal is to provide clients with new insights into customer demand that enable companies to respond faster to opportunities as well as potential problems.
"With these new capabilities from Tealeaf, we can not only provide chief marketing officers and other marketing leaders the qualitative insights into how customers actually experience their brands, but show them how to react in real time across marketing, sales and service," said Craig Hayman, general manager of industry solutions at IBM.
Getting the Customer Experience Right
To truly manage customers' experiences, large enterprises and organizations must understand their customers' needs, how they intend to meet those needs, and how they are performing currently, said Forrester Research analysts. They must also "have people, processes, and tools in place to use that insight in order to design and deliver the right experiences and continuously improve them over time," the firm's analysts wrote last August in a blog.
Tealeaf and other analytics software providers such as Adobe, Medallia and RightNow help clients with various aspects of the management process such as experience insight and delivery. "But they can't replace the overall discipline and activities required for a company to get customer experience right," Forrester's analysts said.
By adding Tealeaf to its smart commerce initiative, Big Blue intends to improve the extent to which it can help large enterprises and organizations develop the best methods for pursuing the requisite additional activities for getting the customer experience right -- and in a coordinated way.
Where Tealeaf's technology fits in to Big Blue's smart commerce initiative comes by way of the analytic software's ability to provide a more granular and richer view of any customer's experience by capturing and replaying his or her past Web and mobile interactions. The technology is expected to complement the smart commerce initiative assets that IBM has already acquired through its prior deals for Coremetrics, Unica and DemandTec.
Targeting Web and Mobile Experiences
Through the data delivered by Tealeaf's analytic software technologies, marketers are provided with the opportunity to learn more details about why customers interact with online Web and mobile resources in the ways that they do. Web commerce on a global basis is expected to reach $1 trillion by 2014 and with mobile commerce reaching $200 billion by 2015, according to a report cited by IBM Wednesday.
Chief marketing officers will be able to use the information delivered by Tealeaf's software to ensure that their future online and mobile marketing efforts deliver a more optimized online experience that boosts customer satisfaction -- even as it improves clients' customer service productivity.
"Marketers must continuously deliver a better customer experience on both the Web and mobile devices to meet the expectations of today's empowered consumers," Hayman said.
Once the acquisition closes, Tealeaf Technologies will be integrated into IBM's enterprise marketing and management group. IBM also said Wednesday that Tealeaf's existing clients -- which include Best Buy, Dell, DirecTV, Expedia, Geico and Wells -- would continue to receive support and enhancements for Tealeaf's customer experience analytics software.
Image credit: iStock/Artist's concept.
Posted: 2012-05-04 @ 3:14am PT
I know Tealeaf for many years. Good for them. About the agent-less solution, I prefer the Clarisite EyeView approach.