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4 Benefits of a CDP in 2023

January 2, 2023 5 minute read
Explore the key benefits of a customer data platform (CDP) and why it’s essential to smarter marketing.

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Customer Data Platform

The uptick of digital transformation permeating organizations has disrupted enterprise status quos and comfort zones. Coupled with evolving technologies and consumers with greater access to information, businesses need to use every advantage they can to get their collective acts together. 

Why? Because people have product options a few keystrokes away, and if you don’t give them good alternatives right away, you lose business. 

Fortunately, all the answers to gaining that business are already captured in customer data. Knowing how to store, organize, and use that data is an essential piece of the digital experience puzzle. Gone are the days of haphazardly collecting data and using it for half-baked marketing strategies. It’s time to be more deliberate about our data. 

This is where customer data platforms (CDP) come into play: a single source to collect and organize customer data to inform strategies and transform digital experiences. A CDP enables organizations to examine customer data at a granular level to better create experiences that fit unique customer profiles. 

Sounds awesome, but CDP benefits run even deeper. Let’s explore a few. 

What are the benefits of a CDP?

Before diving in, it helps to get a brief overview of what a CDP does (or should do). Gartner suggests that any CDP worth your time and money provide the following: 

  • Data collection
  • Profile unification
  • Segmentation
  • Activation

Don’t buy a CDP that doesn’t offer these four pillars. Within these, we can begin to focus more specifically on how their capabilities can benefit your organization. 

Unified customer data collection

Multichannel marketing is great for reaching customers where they are. With the number of channels increasing so rapidly, keeping congruent customer data at every touchpoint is becoming challenging. It's a two-edged sword because organizations want to meet customers at every touchpoint, but keeping those multichannel customer experiences consistent requires customer data to be well organized. A CDP connects those channels to build a unified customer database. 

As customers leave data footprints dotted across your organization's channels, a CDP can collect them and keep them all together. In 2021, organizations around the world used an average of 110 software applications. That’s a lot of potential apps for customer data to fall through the cracks. That’s why the foremost benefit of a CDP is data-wrangling across a wide swath of technologies. 

Unique customer profiles

Piggybacking off unified data collection, CDPs take it a step further by creating single customer views. After data wrangling, a CDP ingests data unique to a single customer and builds a profile based on their behavior, information, purchase history, interest, etc. 

Each time a customer — Bob, let’s say — has purchased a product, read a blog post, emailed support, browsed certain items, logged into your mobile app, or left something in his cart, it’s all filtered into one clean customer profile that summarizes everything Bob has done in relation to your brand. Using this single view, you can better understand how Bob ticks, what he may want next, and how best to guide Bob to what he wants.

Personalization done better

Having a snapshot of your customers makes it so much easier to personally tailor their digital experiences going forward. Gone are the days of personalization being a marketing email with a personalized greeting. Modern personalization is knowing your customers so well that the buyers’ journey becomes a treat versus a task. 

Or, as Steve Jobs put it: “Get closer to your customers. So close that you tell them what they need well before they realize it themselves.” 

With a CDP, you can reach customers on any channel your organization lives and create experiences that speak to them at the individual level — all because you’ve collected, organized, and used data portraits to inform your strategies.

Improved business outcomes 

Can’t leave out the fact that this is just good business. We talked about data falling through the cracks earlier. Not only are those data gaps something that may likely cause a bad experience, but they’ll lose you money, too! 

Covering your bases with a CDP keeps your digital experience game airtight. It tells customers not only that you’re paying attention to them, but you’re also doing something about it. Customers who feel valued usually translate into monetary value. It all starts with using the data they freely give to figure out how to offer an experience that sets you apart from the competition. 

What does all this mean?

Rapid technological advances mean organizations are faced with keeping data organized at the rate it’s coming in. At the same time, customers know there’s a lot of competition for their attention, so they expect more deliberate actions from organizations vying for their business. A CDP is the perfect place to organize and balance customer data influx and to use it to fashion more personalized customer experiences.

Customer data used correctly is a massive competitive advantage, and all the data you need to build better experiences is right in front of you. A CDP will help you reel it all in and make sense of it. 

Not sure where to start? We’ve got some ideas. If you’d like to hear more or see how Acquia CDP works, we’d love to chat with you.

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