‘The Customer Data Platform’- A New Term in the Digital Hype Cycle

A decade ago, marketing was more of a manual job with technology to do a little in it. Today, with the advent of thousands of software and technology solutions, marketers are puzzled as to what could be the best platform to deal with customer data and how to integrate the same with various other processes like the CRM, Sales, and Marketing amongst others. Though technology has opened up a huge arena of opportunities for marketers around the world, unifying the revenue accountability and customer experience and get a comprehensive view of the customer, beyond the acquisition stage still remains a challenge.

The New Solution to the Old Problem- CDP

Last year, Gartner included a new industry category to its “hype cycle” for digital marketing – the Customer Data Platform (CDP). According to its report, “CDP is an integrated customer database managed by marketers that unifies a company’s customer data from marketing, sales and service channels to enable customer modeling and drive customer experience.”

The customer data platform aids marketers who face intricacies in maintaining the highest standard for customer experience while being accountable for revenue. It addresses the challenges of those who are in search for a comprehensive view of customers, beyond the customer acquisition stage and do more with customer data throughout the customer engagement process. The CDP acts as a bridge between conventional marketing database and multi-channel campaign execution engines. The solution could be deployed and controlled by marketers to blend customer identity in a privacy driven environment, manage first-party data, and connect execution and implementation across multiple point solutions.

Here are few areas where CDP could significantly enable the marketers:   

1. A Single, Objective Force to Enhance Your Revenue Streams

A CDP can amplify, enable and optimize the existing marketing and promotion strategy and can significantly facilitate personalization, customer attribution, re-targeting, media mix, customer service as well as numerous other marketing and advertising functions.

2. Unified, Unrelenting Database

The CDP must gather data from multiple sources, connect the dots, and put together the information that relates to each single customer.

3. Providing a Holistic View of Customers at Multiple Touch-points

Customers traverse through multiple traditional and digital touch points in their journey with a particular brand. A CDP can help marketers in collecting data intelligence onsite, offsite, and offline touch-points that a customer travels through. This could help in creating relevant customer profiles, create personalized messages for them, and enhance their experience across multiple platforms.

4. Easy Accessibility

The CDPs solely serve the marketing departments, and thus, they can be agile and responsive. The CDPs store data in a centralized system so that it can be accessed on multiple systems as and when needed.

5. Facilitates Real-Time Decision Making

The customer journey is constantly evolving as marketers continue to find new ways to engage with them. Customers these days make quick decisions due to a massive amount of information being fed to them through various media. CPD helps in near real-time data collection and dissemination of actionable intelligence that can be used in optimizing marketing campaigns, lead conversion cycles and facilitate decision making of different kinds.

6. Ability To Integrate With Other Marketing and Advertising Solutions

The CPD should enable marketers to communicate with customers at each touch-point as it can easily integrate with different marketing and advertising technologies, mobile enablement platforms, email providers, video delivery solutions amongst others.

7. Maintaining Data Privacy and Preventing Data Leakage/ Theft

Since a customer interacts with a brand on multiple occasions on different offline and online media, A CDP should have capabilities addressing enterprise level privacy as well as to monitor and control external threats to customer data.

8. Data Visualization Capabilities

The CPD should integrate with or should have its own data visualization capabilities. This would positively influence business decisions across marketing department as well as the whole organization.

The primary job of CDP is to accumulate data. However, many CDPs offer additional capabilities such as predictive analysis, customer segmentation, personalization, revenue attribution and more. The platform for its strong capabilities to integrate with numerous marketing and advertising software and solutions can help marketers do more with customer data and rely on a single source of data for marketing decision making and campaign management.

Author: Robert Duke
Robert Duke is a Marketing Manager at Blue Mail Media. With over 10 years of experience across B2B Marketing, Lead Generation, and brand marketing, Duke has helped several SMBs and large-scale organizations to elevate their marketing strategies.
Samuel Joseph, Sales Head