What is a Customer Data Platform?

What-is-a-Customer-Data-Platform

A customer data platform (CDP) is a soultion that is able to integrate sales and various engagement data from all customer touchpoints to automate targeted, personalised experiences throughout a customers life cycle.

There’s no escaping big data. It’s everywhere and being produced at an alarming rate. Take Google searches, Google search per second. But what does all of this data have to do with your business? And does collecting, ingesting and analysing it all make a difference to how your brand goes to market?

Valid questions.

Here’s the thing about data: your business has tons of it and that’s all because you have customers.

For example, if you have a website, your visitors are leaving telltale signs of what they want from your brand. As they search through pages on your blog and website, and download white papers and guides, they leave footprints of all-important steps they take on the road to finding a solution like yours.

Unless your brand is ready to use information like this, you’re missing out. You won’t truly understand who your customers are, what behavioural traits they exhibit, and how to market to them as individuals. You’ll relinquish your brand’s competitive edge.

And that’s why customer data platforms (CDPs) matter. They help brands make sense of unique customer data to develop informed marketing strategies.

In this article, we’ll look at what a customer data platform is, how it works, and most importantly, how it serves your business.

What is a customer data platform?

A customer data platform is a software solution designed to create a unified customer database. This database is capable of allowing access to other systems and pulls important data points from various sources to be cleaned, aggregated, and analyzed for the creation of unique customer profiles.

As you can imagine, the ability to create unique customer profiles presents brands with unprecedented opportunity. The chance to create hyper-personalised and targeted campaigns makes for highly-effective marketing.

And personalisation matters to consumers as much as it does to brands. Research by Retail TouchPoints shows that 36% of consumers want retailers to do more to improve their experiences, while SmartHQ found that 72% of consumers will only engage with personalised messaging.

How customer data platforms empower brands

As the need to provide more personalised experiences grows, brands need to dig deep. They need to learn more about their customers to deliver quality touchpoints that lead to bottom-line results. Here’s a look at three important benefits of using a customer data platform.

1. Access to unified customer profiles

Customer data platforms do the heavy lifting when it comes to data. Through the collection and aggregation of multiple customer data points and channels, you can build comprehensive customer profiles. CDPs are also able to create detailed segments based on contextual information, a function that can aid personalised sales engagements.

For example, have a loyalty program? You can incorporate that data along with customer buying frequency, spend, and information on any recent purchases to find new ways to better-position products for customers. And with greater insight into your customer-brand relationships, you can offer better customer support.

2. Greater flexibility and agility

The ability to respond to customer behaviour is what sets market leaders apart from laggards. Customer data platforms leverage AI and machine learning to offer real-time analysis of customer behaviour, making it easier to always know what’s driving customer decisions.

3. Improved efficiency

CDPs also offer greater interoperability. They are capable of integrating data from various sources and are built to do so without the need for custom development or the ongoing maintenance and troubleshooting that proprietary and in-house platforms require.

For growing businesses, this means low overheads and less time spent trying to get technology to work to drive meaningful business progress.

Become an empowered brand

As important data continues to be generated by your buyers, it’s time to think about leveraging it. Customer data platforms make it possible to peel back the layers of seemingly unconnected information to present more than ones and zeros.

With the right CDP solution, brands can deliver better marketing results. Making sense of who your customers are and how they interact with your brand (in real-time) becomes seamless, allowing you to find smarter ways to deliver stronger and more effective marketing campaigns.

For more information on customer data platforms, get in touch with our experts.

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