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May 26, 2021
6 minutes read

Customer Data Platforms (CDP): The Key to An Ultimate Omnichannel Customer Experience

Until recently, marketing automation was mainly focused on email. Although, email is still a primary communication channel, it’s not the only channel you can use to expand your reach. Today’s customers living in a hyper-connected world want interactions with your brand that are more personalized and through their preferred channels. This includes all mobile messaging channels like SMS and WhatsApp. But, to be truly omnichannel and automated, you need to first unify your customer data – best done with CDP. 

Today’s customers crave personalized interactions with your brand. They also crave convenience. They want personal interactions on the channels they use most. To meet these needs, many brands have sought to put into play omnichannel marketing strategies that create a unified brand experience across every marketing channel. Some studies have shown that omnichannel campaigns result in a 90% higher retention rate.

Yet for many brands, the results haven’t always lived up to the hype. What’s the solution? In order to run a successful omni-channel marketing campaign that personally connects with every consumer, marketers need a 360-degree  view of each customer. 

To make customer data fully actionable, marketers need a complete view of the customer journey across all channels, from WhatsApp to voice, in order to develop a unified, 360-degree view of each customer. In doing so, marketers can break down data silos and gain deeper insights into consumers, enabling them to craft hyper-relevant, personalized marketing messages.

A growing number of companies are beginning to understand the need to centralize customer data in order to gain in-depth insights into customers that can be transformed into high-impact omnichannel marketing initiatives. If you’re curious to learn how, read up on Customer Data Platforms below. 


Creating a Customer-centric Plan With a CDP 

A Customer Data Platform arms your company with the data and tools you need to create fully immersive, personalized customer experiences.   

A CDP as originally defined by the CDP Institute is a software that creates persistent, unified customer data accessible to other systems.  

This allows organizations to create a 360-degree view of customers and a unified customer data management system that combines customer data into a single database.

You can use a CDP to automate your omnichannel marketing strategies and deliver a truly engaging customer experience. 


What Makes a CDP Unique

Unlike traditional architecture, CDPs are designed to create a unified view of every customer. 

In a nutshell, a CDP has three fundamental properties:

  1. It is a pre-built system designed with a customer in mind.
  2. It collects customer data from multiple sources creating a unified view of each customer. 
  3. It has the ability to share this data with other platforms. 

The majority of database software solutions, data lakes and data warehouses are built on traditional architecture and need more technical skills. CDPs on the other hand are designed to collect, organize, and share data easily across different systems that seamlessly manage large volumes of ever-changing customer data. 

This data may include: 

  • Basic customer data – Such as a customer’s name, age, and contact details 
  • Behavioral data – Such as a user’s journey across a website or in a mobile app 
  • Buying behaviors – Including information on products they’ve bought or returned
  • Data from customer service interactions – Such as chatbot, email, or phone-call transcripts or information stored on your customer relationship management systems 
  • Data analytics from past campaigns – Such as click-through-rates and engagement 


Why a CDP is At The Heart of Omnichannel Marketing Automation

CDPs are valuable for launching and automating omnichannel marketing campaigns. Here are the top five reasons why you should consider adding one to your martech stack. 

#1 Automated Omnichannel Marketing

Because CDPs collect and unify data from multiple sources, they can easily track each customer’s multi-channel customer journey. With a CDP, you can pool data on customer behavior, such as interactions with your site or purchase history, to create 360-degree customer profiles that power a personalized, results-driven omnichannel marketing strategy.

Moreover, CDPs can also be used to send automated messages to customers across every channel. While most marketing automation tools only incorporate email, a CDP can do much more — automating text messages, pre-recorded voice calls, and WhatsApp messages. 

By tracking a customer's journey across any platform, you can automate personalized marketing messages that increase conversion and boost customer retention.


#2 CDP Puts Marketers in Control

Alternative solutions like data warehouses and data lakes often require more advanced technical skills — impacting their usability for most marketers. 

Despite their ability to ingest data from multiple sources, CDPs can collect, organize, and share data seamlessly across different systems. By doing this, CDP enables marketers to take control of customer data and analysis allowing them to efficiently use this data to lead automated, omnichannel marketing campaigns that excel. 


#3 Retain Repeat High-value Customers

Repeat customers are extremely valuable to any business as they generate a substantial amount of a company’s revenue. Marketing teams often give them high importance and strategize marketing initiatives to keep these customers engaged. But that’s difficult to do without a single point of view relating to customers' information. 

Thanks to their ability to track, collect and store data on customer buying behaviors, CDPs can identify high-value repeat customers very easily. 

The data stored by a CDP can be used for targeted, omnichannel marketing campaigns, designed to engage these customers across every touchpoint. 


#4 Genuine Personalization

Personalization is key to winning and keeping customers.  However, you can’t personalize adequately without an omnichannel marketing strategy. This is because an omnichannel strategy allows you to gather data on your customers’ favorite channels and target them accordingly.

Moreover, without a unified view of your customers, it’s impossible to deliver a personalized experience as they move between touchpoints — from mobile app to desktop and from laptop to store. 

The single customer view delivered by a CDP ensures that every interaction with a brand is tailored to each customer. 


#5 Targeted Campaigns

CDPs are typically utilized to deliver personalized customer experiences and targeted omnichannel marketing campaigns. However, it’s hard to drive a marketing campaign without first and third-party data. 

First-party data is more valuable, dependable, and less risky than third-party data. Customer data platforms are primarily engineered to focus on owned and trusted first-party data — including data from point-of-sale systems, IoT devices, loyalty applications, Customer Relationship Management (CRMs), and Data Management Platforms (DMPs).

 CDPs combine this data to create unique customer profiles that provide a 360˚ view of each customer . This rich customer data can be used to create data-informed hypotheses about what customers want based on prior behavior. Real-time customer data can then be utilized to test, evaluate, and optimize marketing campaigns. 


Final Thoughts

Do you want to improve your marketing strategy or start with an omnichannel strategy? Then an all-in-one marketing solution, with extra marketing capabilities built in, is the best choice. CM.com's Mobile Marketing Cloud is the only omnichannel customer engagement solution that includes all mobile messaging channels like SMS and WhatsApp.  

By bringing the above capabilities into a single platform, we minimize your tech stack complexity, combat data silos, and give growth and retention teams full control over their process – including analysis, testing, measurement and orchestration.

Mobile Marketing Cloud is a great example of a customer engagement CDP that can be easily integrated into your tech stack.  We approach a CDP as a customer engagement tool that allows you to:

  • Centralize your customer data
  • Create enhanced customer segments for greater relevancy
  • Refine your omnichannel marketing campaigns with real-time data and analytics
  • Automate your customer journeys across every channel – from email to mobile. 

Check out our product page for more information on our CDP capabilities or feel free to contact us if you have questions.

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