Co-Founder Yair Holtzer Talks Como Sense® — How the Cloud Platform Harnesses CRM, BI, and Loyalty to Turn Customer Engagement Into Revenue

Co-Founder Yair Holtzer Talks Como Sense® — How the Cloud Platform Harnesses CRM, BI, and Loyalty to Turn Customer Engagement Into Revenue

TL; DR: For organizations operating in today’s increasingly competitive online marketplace, engaging with customers the right way on their digital journeys has become a recipe for success. And, since 2005, Como has been helping businesses assemble the ingredients. The company’s expansive CRM, businesses intelligence, and loyalty management platform, Como Sense®, transforms actionable data into smarter approaches to marketing, giving businesses the capabilities behind the online giants. This cloud-based toolset allows organizations to discover exactly who their customers are and what they buy, and then deliver personalized, relevant communications that encourage them to come back. We recently sat down with Como Co-Founder Yair Holtzer, who told us how the company’s comprehensive engagement platform has businesses lining up in droves to boost customer interaction and revenue streams.

Before the rise of computerized point-of-sale (POS) systems, gathering sales and customer data was a tedious ordeal, with retail managers having to pull and aggregate numerous reports from every chain. Even with the modern POS, actionable data is rather limited, as standard sales receipts lack any real insight into customer demographics or habits. As a result, many businesses must resort to more advanced methods of gathering data and, in turn, earning repeat customers.

That’s where Como steps in. The company’s flagship product, Como Sense®, allows businesses to make the most out of customer engagement. Unlike loyalty punch cards, paper signup forms, or occasional emails, Como Sense grants retailers the tools and information to have a direct and personalized line of communication with customers via push notifications, text messages, emails, and marketing automation.

As such, these businesses are able to reach customers on the go and engage them with instant promotions, coupons, and reward program updates. The platform is also cloud-based, allowing for easy access and management across devices and optimal data security.

Yair Holtzer's headshot and the Como logo

Como’s Yair Holtzer told us how the company helps build customer engagement strategies through a cloud-based toolset.

“All of our products are cloud-based,” said Como Co-Founder Yair Holtzer. “Meanwhile, we’ve seen a lot of brick-and-mortars using old POS.”

And Yair told us some of these POS systems were outdated by five to 10 years.

“We found these POS systems needed some kind of add-on to keep them updated with the latest industry needs and trends,” he said.

Using Como Sense, companies can quickly roll out new information and incentives to customers without the laborious and time-consuming work of mailing coupons, sending email blasts, or performing lengthy updates to each individual POS. Used by a wide range of retailers, Como Sense has also partnered with a number of popular POS brands, including Par, Revel, Omni, and Bleep.

Leveraging Actionable Data Leads to Good Business Intelligence

By storing and analyzing data from a store’s POS, Como Sense gives businesses important insights regarding sales trends. This can be as simple as identifying the highest-performing products and campaigns, or as complex as analyzing specific customer habits.

“We capture insights from the POS and turn it into actionable data that is hosted in the cloud,” Yair said.

Como Sense provides actionable data such as sales volume and customer habits. For example, the dashboard can display peak sales times at which the retailer can plan time-sensitive promotions. Likewise, slow times can be supplemented with incentives to draw in more customers, and infrequent customers can be encouraged to shop with incentivized promotions, as well. Additionally, businesses can send targeted promotions based on buying preferences, shopping habits, personal details, and more.

“We’ve built a system where you can track customers from purchase to purchase and we adapt the content based on things like customer experience and purchases,” Yair said.

Manage Customer Info Anywhere With a Toolset Sitting in the Cloud

Como Sense provides a wealth of information that is also easily accessed from any authorized device in any location. Because the platform is cloud-based, users need only a web browser and internet connection to view a wide range of sales, loyalty, and trend-related data. This ensures that actionable data is readily available to decision makers.

“Cloud technology can change and enhance existing technology, and that’s exactly what we’re doing with these POS companies,” Yair said. “We are empowering them with the cloud without the need for them to develop new software or upgrade to a new POS.”

Como Sense’s empowers the POS with next-generation customer engagement and provides a centralized view of activity and insights for all retail locations. On Como’s platform users can organize and filter customers according to various actions and attributes, making it easier to target specific customer segments.

Users can also create personalized loyalty programs and automate sending rewards and promotions to specific user groups. Businesses can launch a wide variety of engaging promotion types such as punch cards, scratch cards, spending level tiers, cross-promotion, and social sharing campaigns. Promotions can be scheduled ahead of time, or triggered according to customer behavior or location.

A Fully Integrated System With an API Allowing for External Add-ons

Como Sense is designed to help businesses meet their goals through a well-rounded combination of actionable insights and customer management. Data-wise, the Como Sense dashboard provides detailed reports, real-time analytics, and a data wizard that helps identify opportunities for growth and customer targeting.

Como Sense also empowers companies with a branded mobile app that makes it easy to integrate digital rewards and personalize the experience with geo-targeted offers. Aside from apps, businesses can interact with customers using marketing automation and a variety of channels — including SMS messages, push notifications, emails, social media sharing, feedback surveys, and more. While businesses have many options for data analytics, CRM, and loyalty program management, Como Sense offers all of these tools rolled into one easy-to-use suite.

In addition to its already expansive toolset, Como Sense can integrate with a number of external systems, including eCommerce platforms and ordering services.

“We make sure to have a very open and comprehensive API,” Yair said. “We give partners our platform to use and we allow them to integrate with it.”

Most often, Como Sense gets integrated with POS systems and payment processing platforms, as these are directly involved in each individual transaction. Como’s partnership with a wide variety of POS brands — coupled with its open API — makes integration simple and easy.

New Partnerships Hold Potential to Cover 50% of US Brick-and-Mortars

Originally founded in 2005, Como has been a major innovator in business-related mobile and cloud technology — even becoming Israel’s first billion-dollar internet company. The original Como product was a mobile development platform that has since been used to create more than 1 million apps, including officially branded NFL and European soccer team apps.

Conversely, Como Sense is connected to over 75 POS brands and is used by large chains such as PAUL, Burger King, and Benihana. Because the restaurant and retail niches rely so heavily on customer satisfaction, using a comprehensive CRM and loyalty platform like Como Sense is essential for maintaining customer engagement.

Since its inception, Como has helped businesses stay competitive by keeping on top of trends at both the business and industry levels. In 2015, Como acquired Keeperz — a multi-million dollar mobile customer loyalty platform.

More recently, Como has announced plans to partner with more US-based POS companies.

“We are very successful in other markets like the UK, EMEA, and Latin America,” Yair said. “In 2018, we’re planning on a few major integrations with leading POS companies that cover 50% of the brick-and-mortar businesses in the US.”

The massive size of the US retail market shows promise for Como Sense and the businesses that choose to integrate it.

With Como Sense, businesses can simultaneously leverage the power of actionable data, customer management, automated loyalty programs, and integrated services. This enables businesses of any size to grow and scale in multiple ways — by increasing sales and ensuring customer retention and satisfaction.

“We are providing them with tools that were previously only available to the giant online players,” Yair said. “They have the option to personalize the way they engage with their customers the way big players like Amazon and Google do.”

Sean Garrity

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