Customer Data Platforms Are Unlocking the Future of Personalization. Here’s How.

May 21, 2020

Eighty percent of shoppers are more likely to buy from a company that offers personalized experiences, according to marketing data and services company Epsilon. 

Marketers in 2020 know that feeling connected to a brand makes all the difference for customers. That’s why they’ve turned to personalization techniques to reach their target audience. But how do they get to know their individual customers in the first place? Customer data platforms. 

In a world with dozens of customer interactions and touchpoints, CDPs offer marketers unique, consolidated insight into the minds of customers, helping them meet consumers at the next logical point in their customer journey. 

But marketers are only able to create personalized user experiences if they have access to fully fleshed-out customer profiles. If user data is inaccurate or incomplete, it can’t be used to generate effective personalized marketing efforts. Profiles are built by aggregating data from sources like data management platforms, social media activity, CRMs and website behavior. Oftentimes, this data is housed in disparate, siloed sources.

CDPs help marketers collect disconnected data and house it in a central location, giving companies a full scope of who their users are and how they act. From there, it’s up to marketers to determine how, when and where to best reach their customers. 

 

Simon Data employee
Simon data
Michelle Schroeder
Head of Marketing

Michelle Schroeder, head of marketing at enterprise customer data platform Simon Data, said data centralization allows marketing teams to create personalized user experiences. When teams have tools that don’t relay data to one another effectively, it can create holes in customer knowledge that prevent personalization.

 

What is a customer data platform and how does it help marketers? 

A customer data platform takes all of the ways in which a customer interacts with a brand — like first clicks on a webpage and mobile app usage — and turns it into unified, accessible data marketers can use. 

The biggest mandate for marketers in recent years has been to personalize the customer experience every step of the way. We believe that the only way to make this personalization happen is through a CDP that combines a complete and accurate picture of the customer with the ability to orchestrate the customer journey on any channel. We work with many enterprise brands that put us at the heart of their technology stack to build cohesive and delightful customer experiences.

Lots of customer journeys don’t get prioritized or connected.”

 

How can marketers leverage insights from their CDPs to improve personalization?

There are so many obstacles to true personalization, which is why so many of our inboxes don’t reflect marketers’ drive to do this well. It’s essential to know customers, which is a technically complex thing. Tools that deliver messages to customers need to be connected to customer knowledge, and also to each other. 

The problem with personalization for brands is that the people responsible for it don’t have easy access to a customer identity model they can use. All of the tools they use are based on siloed data points that don’t talk to each other. There are deeper issues with this lack of communication as well. For instance, many customer journeys don’t get prioritized or connected. But CDPs that can solve this problem can be the foundation for personalization and a great customer experience.

 

What results have your company and customers seen by creating a more personalized customer experience?

Some of our customers have seen a 200 percent lift in email revenue by solving the problem of knowing who should receive certain messages and when. Marketers can be impactful when they know their customers and can center an experience for them that spans several different tools, teams and goals.

One interesting result we’ve seen is the ability for marketing teams to do more while relying on fewer tools. Many of our customers have been able to cut down on their technology expenses, which can account for 30 percent of their budget. They can also cut the time it takes to manage all of these tools. We recently saw one of our customers reduce their cost per message by 98 percent while increasing their email deliverability. It was a win-win-win.

 

Pico team member working
pico

Marketers at audience engagement platform Pico use the company’s own plug-in to source the user analytics they need to generate personalized experiences. CEO Nick Chen said the tool’s low level of technical overhead makes it easy for marketers to employ without the assistance of developers. 

 

How is your marketing team using Pico’s proprietary technology to enhance personalization?

We’ve had the opportunity to “dogfood” our product for our own customer engagement needs. By installing the Pico plug-in on The Byline, our company blog, we’ve been able to offer visitors an engaging reading experience. Once they’ve subscribed to our newsletter, they never see another pop-up asking them to subscribe, even if they come back to the blog in a new browsing session months later. Since our software allows visitors to subscribe to a newsletter with their Facebook or Google account, we can even acknowledge them by name throughout the blog. Our marketing team is able to accomplish this personalization without asking for help from any of our developers because the features are made available with only a few lines of copy-and-pasted code.

The Pico plug-in is able to associate critical analytics with specific individuals.”

 

What are some valuable insights your CDP has unlocked and how have you leveraged those insights in your work?

The data we gather from Pico empowers our marketing team to make smarter decisions about the content we create and even helps our sales team reach out to prospects more effectively. That’s because the Pico plug-in is able to associate critical analytics with specific individuals. For example, it tags and categorizes the blog posts a person reads the most and marks the date of a person’s last visit to the blog. Pico has the ability to keep a visitor logged in to a website, ensuring a source of data that is both persistent and predicated on user consent from the start.

 

What results have your company and customers seen by creating a more personalized customer experience?

We’ve seen companies use Pico to create a range of personalized experiences for their customers, like fan clubs giving their members an easier way to manage their newsletter preferences and yoga studios enabling different levels of access to live video streams based on the customer’s profile. These companies are employing our toolkit of user interface building blocks that make it easy to put data into action without much help from developers.

 

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