Excellence in Innovation: How a Stevie Award Winner is Reshaping Customer Experience Preethika Sathyamangalam Kalyanasundaram is tackling the challenges of enhancing the customer experience in the e-commerce domain by advancing e-commerce analytics, intelligence, and automation

By Shlok Sharma

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Preethika Sathyamangalam Kalyanasundaram

Technological advancements are continually reshaping the way businesses engage with their customers in the rapidly evolving Customer Experience (CX) industry. This industry, critical to shaping how businesses understand and interact with customers, is witnessing a transformation driven by advanced analytics, artificial intelligence, and a deeper understanding of customer needs.

Preethika Sathyamangalam Kalyanasundaram is a leading figure in the CX industry, who has made significant contributions to it and has brought multiple products to the market to help businesses across the globe achieve hyper-personalization. She says "hyper-personalization represents a more advanced stage of customer engagement where experiences are not just tailored to broad segments but are uniquely customized for each individual, leading to a deeper and more meaningful connection between the customer and the brand".

Currently holding a pivotal position at Salesforce, Preethika is tackling the challenges of enhancing the customer experience in the e-commerce domain by advancing e-commerce analytics, intelligence, and automation. She is helping build products that will help businesses keep their customers engaged by identifying individual preferences, streamlining the purchasing journey and empowering sellers with tools that will incentivise customers to remain loyal. Identifying who to incentivise and accurately targeting the right segment of customers is a pressing problem in the e-commerce domain. To tackle this problem, Preethika simplified aspects of e-commerce promotional campaigns and pricing discounts through the use of Natural Language Processing (NLP) and Generative AI, a first in the e-commerce industry, enabling businesses to accurately target their promotion campaigns.

E-commerce platforms collect a lot of data from their customers in order to personalize the product to the point of becoming overwhelming for businesses. Data without actionable insights is useless. Preethika attempted to solve this problem by launching sophisticated capabilities designed to equip businesses with deep insights into customer churn, purchasing patterns, and preferences. Some of the capabilities are conversational analytics to summarize crucial metric changes, identification of actionable trends for merchandisers, and identification of friction points to eliminate and increase business agility.

During her tenure at Oracle, Preethika led the integration of AI into CX marketing platforms, addressing the industry's pressing issue of marketing message fatigue. Her patented artificial intelligence system predicts and modulates the frequency of marketing messages based on customer fatigue levels. This strategy garnered widespread praise from industry analysts for its effectiveness and significantly altered marketing communications across industries. One of her other innovations uses machine learning (ML) to predict and optimize email subject lines, and has markedly improved engagement rates, benefiting marketers worldwide. She tailors customer engagement in novel ways, by integrating machine learning algorithms, leading to more intuitive and satisfying consumer journeys.

Preethika's exemplary work in pushing the boundaries of customer experience by leveraging cutting edge technologies, to personalize and enhance user experiences, has been recognized with prestigious awards. At the International Stevie Awards for Women in Business 2023, a premier global business awards competition for women, she won multiple awards for "Most Innovative Woman of the Year" in both the Industry and Technology categories.

With a Master's degree in Computer Engineering from Iowa State University, Preethika's influence extends beyond her technical accomplishments. Speaking regularly at conferences on product management and technology, Preethika is deeply engaged in the CX community. She advocates diversity and inclusion, especially emphasizing women's role in technology. She mentors and inspires the next generation of women tech leaders by volunteering at events like Grace Hopper.

With expertise in the niche hyper-personalization domain of the CX industry, Preethika anticipates new and unseen challenges the industry will face in the upcoming years with AI advancement. Though customers will expect personalization as a basic necessity, businesses will have to ensure they don't become too invasive. A brand's top priority is to build trust with its customers. Ethical challenges may arise if the personalization engines used by businesses are biased and not equitable. Preethika believes that the next decade is an exciting time for the industry and there are tremendous opportunities for innovation. Irrespective of the challenges she faces, Preethika remains focused on empathetic and user-centered design as her guiding mantra. Preethika says, "Embrace curiosity, collaboration, and continuous learning. Stay true to your vision and values, forging your unique path to success. You have it - believe in yourself!"

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