Last updated: What is Customer Data Platform? Can it improve CX?

What is Customer Data Platform? Can it improve CX?


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What is a customer data platform? A customer data platform is software designed to make sense of your customer data so you can engage with them on a more personal, effective (and valuable) level. Effectively managing big data, customer data platforms unlock customer insight on an entirely new level. But what does that mean for marketers? Executives? Customers? How do CDPs change their experiences? 

Instead of getting into the weeds of how a customer data platform works, let’s zoom out and look at what it does.

What does a customer data platform do? Use cases and examples

CDPs are meant to be used by different teams and departments, so how they are used varies depending on who’s using them. The impact of CDPs also varies, as their utility across departments allows them to positively influence everything from CX to revenue. Let’s take a look at just a few examples of how different groups benefit from centralized customer data platforms.

What can CDP do for customer teams? It’s actually personalized engagements that sell. Data sets deliver.

Customer data platforms are most often linked to marketing teams, but really every customer-facing department benefits from centralized, standardized customer data. CDPs create comprehensive, dynamic customer profiles that update in real-time as customers interact with your brand – at any touchpoint. 

Sales, marketing, and customer service teams can access these profiles and dashboards to get a better understanding of their customers and uncover patterns and trends in their behavior to drive better experiences.

Customer team use cases:

  1. Marketing: The CDP dashboard gives marketers access to up-to-date customer data from all touchpoints – online, offline, known, and anonymous. The marketer can quickly set up parameters based on known customer behaviors (e.g. customers who purchased in-store in the past six months) to trigger personalized engagements (e.g. emails tailored to feature images from their preferred store and a personalized discount code for their next purchase). 
  2. Sales: The CDP can be integrated with machine learning capabilities that sift through all the user data a company has and identify behaviors that signal strong intent to purchase. For sales teams, that intent is gold. Unlocking it means Sales can prioritize those users most likely to purchase, driving more revenue.
  3. Service:  71% of customers expect companies to collaborate and share information internally so they don’t have to repeat themselves. Customer data platforms do just that, combining historical customer data from all touchpoints and channels. So when they do reach out for support, your service agents can access information from their previous calls, transactions, and other interactions without the customer needing to repeatedly explain it. And with the full context at their fingertips, your agents can resolve issues faster and more effectively.

What is CDP to executives? It’s valuable, real-time, data-driven insights.

Executives across the C-suite are tasked with driving the company’s strategy and empowering their teams to do their best work. For them, customer data platforms provide the clean, high-quality data necessary to make informed business decisions, and even help them identify new revenue opportunities.

Executive use case:

  • Instead of looking at customer data in separate systems (marketing, sales, product, customer service, etc.), executives can access all of it through the CDP. This paints a much more accurate picture of the customer journey, making it easier to identify trends and make informed, strategic decisions. 

What is it to customers? It’s experiences so smooth, they’re invisible.

The best customer experience is the one the customer doesn’t even notice. Chances are, if you’re reading this, you live in the world of CX, and can’t help but notice the exceptional (good or bad) interactions you experience. But most consumers only notice the experience when something goes wrong. When they call customer service for the third time and have to re-explain their issue again, or when they can’t access the same account information on mobile as they can on desktop. A customer data platform enhances customer interaction because as data is gathered in real-time, teams are able to apply the insight for customer experience.

Customer use case:

A customer purchases a product in-store, giving their personal information at check-out to connect the purchase to their account. Later, after encountering an issue, they call customer service and are quickly directed to the right department, and the service agent has their purchase history pulled up as soon as they’re connected. The issue is resolved quickly, and as soon as the customer indicates they are satisfied with the resolution, they are sent a personalized email asking them to complete a customer survey, including a targeted offer for a discount on a related item.

Better data, better insights, better business

Exactly how you set up and use your customer data platform will depend on your company’s goals, priorities, and setup. Marketing automation is best when the customer, and in this case, their high-quality data, are the foundation upon which all actions are built. There are infinite combinations of features and functionality, but no matter who you are, you can stand to benefit from better-organized customer data.

Real-time insights.
Across all touchpoints.
Yes. For real.
Get the details HERE.

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