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With so many different customer data platforms (CDPs) available, figuring out which is the right one for your needs is challenging. You know you want a robust platform to help you collect, organize, and unify your customer data from multiple sources, but you need to figure out which option is best. In this article, I'll help you simplify your options by sharing my insights on the best customer data platforms to manage your customer data and create complete customer profiles for better marketing decisions, based on my own CX experience.

What is a Customer Data Platform?

A customer data platform (CDP) is a software system that gathers and unifies customer data from multiple sources into a complete customer profile for better marketing decisions, including personalized campaigns. They allow you to integrate and manage rich customer data from numerous sources, and segment your customers into different groups for targeted actions and campaigns depending on their unique needs.

Customer data platforms create a more holistic view of customers and their needs, allowing you to offer personalized customer experiences with better outcomes. They also simplify the process of analyzing data and support data-driven decisions.

Overviews Of The 10 Best Customer Data Platforms

Here are my top choices for the best customer data platforms (CDPs) available today, accompanied by a short description of what each platform is best for:

Best no-code, highly customizable customer data platform

  • 30-day free trial
  • From $600/month (billed annually), which equates to $25/user/month with a minimum requirement of 20 users. This is for the Team plan, which includes core features suitable for smaller teams. For larger organizations or those needing advanced features, QuickBase offers higher-tier plans, and pricing for these can be obtained upon request.
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Rating: 4.4/5

QuickBase is a leading cloud-based platform that specializes in enabling businesses to design and deploy custom applications with ease. This platform is particularly celebrated for its user-friendly interface and flexibility, allowing users from various technical backgrounds to craft solutions that precisely meet their operational requirements. Through QuickBase, companies can significantly streamline their workflows, foster collaboration among teams, and enhance their overall productivity, positioning QuickBase as a pivotal tool for organizational development and efficiency.

Why I Picked QuickBase: In the context of serving as a customer data platform, QuickBase demonstrates exceptional proficiency by facilitating the creation of customized applications tailored to manage and analyze customer data effectively. It shines by providing businesses with the tools to aggregate customer information from multiple sources into a unified database, offering a comprehensive view of customer interactions and behaviors. This capability enables companies to gain deeper insights into their customer base, personalize customer experiences, and make data-driven decisions. QuickBase's adaptability and ease of customization make it an invaluable asset for organizations aiming to leverage their customer data for strategic advantage, standing out as a versatile and powerful customer data platform.

QuickBase Standout Features and Integrations

Features include unmatched customization options without the complexity of coding. Users have the liberty to create database applications that are finely tuned to their unique business and sales needs. This characteristic is particularly transformative, as it levels the playing field, enabling individuals without a programming background to devise solutions that meet their precise requirements. As a result, teams can achieve highly specialized applications that mesh well with their workflows, an advantage not readily available with more rigid platforms.

Additional key features include no-code application development, real-time reporting and analytics, automated workflows, custom forms, granular permission settings, data integration capabilities, cross-application connectivity, mobile access, cloud-based architecture, team collaboration tools.

Integrations include Salesforce, Gmail, Slack, Dropbox, Box, Microsoft Office 365, QuickBooks, Zapier, Mailchimp, Tableau.

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Comprehensive integration options
  • Strong automation and workflow capabilities
  • Highly customizable no-code platform

Cons:

  • Limited design customization for user interfaces
  • Steep learning curve for new users

Best for integrating CDP functions with content management and search

  • Pricing upon request
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Rating: 4.7/5

The Bloomreach suite comprises Engagement, Discovery and Content.

Bloomreach helps users collect, store, and analyze data to gain granular insights into customers’ preferences and behaviors. Bloomreach Engagement is an omnichannel marketing automation platform that unifies your customer data and helps design personalized experiences.

Why I picked Bloomreach: Bloomreach Engagement expertly combines CDP functions with content management for streamlined omnichannel orchestration of user journeys. Using Bloomreach, you can weave email and SMS marketing automation into your personalization strategies to build more effective and targeted ad campaigns.

Bloomreach also registers all your customer’s preferences across various channels such as websites, mobile apps and social media. Subsequently, the tool is great for e-commerce brands wanting to improve their customer engagement and conversions.

Bloomreach Standout Features and Integrations:

One standout feature of Bloomreach is that it stores data in an IMF (in-memory framework) format. This enables high read and write speeds, advanced reporting and dynamic data, and content management. 

The software also seamlessly collates data between multiple data sources allowing you to instantly activate any additional marketing channels. Using this functionality, you can stay relevant using real-time audience insights and optimize campaigns. 

Bloomreach also has its own AI product, Loomi, that boosts conversions through informed recommendations. Loomi also predicts the probability of purchase, churn, return, etc.

Integrations include 130+ third-party applications, such as Amazon MWS, Attentive, Contentsquare, Freshdesk, MongoDB, Salesforce B2C Commerce, Shopify, Slack, SugarCRM, TikTok, Twitter, Zoho Subscriptions, and more.

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Custom data tracking and quick real-time analytics
  • Loads of targeted segments based on browse and purchase behavior
  • Intuitive UI with AI tools for campaigns

Cons:

  • Complex web layers and reporting structure
  • No automatic dashboards for creating and tracking surveys

Best for ingesting user analytics data and distributing it to data warehousing third-party applications

  • 14-day free trial + free plan available
  • From $120/month (billed annually)
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Rating: 4.5/5

Segment (by Twilio) is a leading customer data platform, having helped more than 25,000+ businesses worldwide collect, clean, analyze, and activate their user data to drive targeted marketing initiatives. 

Why I picked Segment: Segment leverages audience data in 450+ marketing tools that operate in real-time. These tools offer several useful features, including marketing automation, data analytics, email marketing, advertising, and more. 

Such a wide opportunity for data integration translates to the ability to gather customer information from multiple websites and mobile applications. You can then use that information to approach customers based on a thorough understanding of their pain points. Consequently, you can create customized real-time brand experiences for your customers.

Moreover, Segment offers a generous freemium plan. The free plan offers two data sources to collect information from and allows you to send the data to unlimited destinations. Moreover, the free plan also lets you create a comprehensive customer profile and track up to 1,000 users every month.  

Segment Standout Features and Integrations:

One standout feature of Segment is its data filtering and schema-locking capabilities that set defaults on event requirements to regulate data cleanliness. As a result, your data warehouses and integrations are guarded against rogue events. 

Additionally, Segment helps you align your marketing, engineering, and analytics teams with a shared data dictionary. Segment also migrates historical data to new integrations, unifies user histories across devices and channels to build comprehensive user profiles, and provides cross-domain analytics.

Integrations include 450+ third-party applications, such as Amplitude, Bucket, ChurnZero, Contentful, Drip, Freshsales, Gladly, Hotjar, Impact, Intercom, Looker, MadKudu, and more.

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Enables building event pipelines across apps and integrations
  • Easy deduplication for streamlining real-time data updates
  • Handles PII information and GDPR and CCPA compliance well

Cons:

  • Struggles with large data volumes and loading data in one sync
  • Retrieving user data with frontend libraries can be difficult

Best for startups seeking flexibility in optimizing customer journeys

  • 14-day free trial
  • From $249/month (2 users + 200 customer accounts)
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Rating: 4.3/5

Totango specializes in designing and optimizing customer journeys at scale. It provides access to real-time customer data, enabling you to take preemptive measures and nurture customers at various marketing touchpoints.

Totango is a favorite among scaleups and startups, owing to its flexibility and scalability in running the user journey throughout the customer lifecycle. Totango streamlines project onboarding via goals, KPIs, client segments, success plays, marketing, and other resources. 

Why I picked Totango: Totango helps startups and scaleups expand predictably by using time-based triggers, product telemetry, and other signals to tweak campaigns in real-time. Totango also features useful journey templates to start mapping customer journeys in minutes. 

Totango ships a customizable platform to design, build, manage, and assess various stages of your customer experience. It also makes account management with complex hierarchies a breeze. The platform offers an outcome-oriented solution design and modular pre-built building blocks.

Totango Standout Features and Integrations:

One standout feature of Totango is its early warning system that proactively assesses and notifies sales teams about waning customer health. The platform also offers executive reporting and dashboards to measure team performance and optimize workflows for increased productivity. 

Additionally, Totango enables customer engagement with NPS surveys and drives product adoption through its targeted campaigns. Totango also offers enterprise-grade privacy and security and complies with data compliance standards like SOC 2 and GDPR.

Integrations include 45+ tools, such as Amazon S3, Chorus, Dropbox, Gong, Google Cloud Storage, HubSpot Marketing Hub, Jira Software, MS Teams, Monday, Pendo, Slack, Zendesk, and more. 

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Successplays feature to help CX teams standardize user experience
  • Easy and configurable journey mapping
  • Customer health score tracking and analysis

Cons:

  • Product usage aggregation sometimes creates blank accounts
  • Logging updates on touchpoints takes many clicks

Best CDP with a visual workflow builder

  • 14-day free trial
  • From $100/month
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Rating: 4.2/5

With Customer.io, you can easily automate messaging campaigns. Data Pipelines (the CDP product of Customer.io) is great for collating first-party data from various sources, including websites, applications, databases, and warehouses. Consequently, you can consolidate accurate customer data and leverage insights to kickstart personalized interactions with customers across mobile and web channels.

Why I picked Customer.io: Customer.io leverages real-time behavioral data for personalized and relevant communications. This involves sending messages via emails, push notifications, SMS, in-app messaging, and more. The tool supports Android, iOS, React Native, and Flutter mobile software development kits (SDKs).

Moreover, Customer.io has a data-driven audience segment and a visual workflow builder. The builder is ideal for hyper-targeted campaigns. You can also set up triggered drip sequences that keep the engagement going when your customer performs a desired action. Overall, the workflow is simple to set up and has great automation possibilities.

Customer.io Standout Features and Integrations:

One standout feature of Customer.io is turning your segments into ad audiences by connecting data to your desired ad platform. 

In addition, you can use library languages (including Ruby, Python, Go, and others) to submit event data from your application to Customer.io. 

Integrations include almost 200 third-party applications, such as Appcues, Help Scout, Jira, ManyChat, Nexmo, Productboard, Shopify, Smartsheet, Stripe, Twilio SMS, Zapier, Zoom, and more.

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Support for liquid data makes highly detailed personalization possible
  • Easy creation of campaign workflows for emails
  • Robust customer segmentation and A/B testing capabilities

Cons:

  • Lacks the ability to schedule messages on a daily or weekly basis
  • Requires a better automation builder

Best CDP with scalable data processing capabilities and schemaless architecture

  • Pricing upon request

Zeta is ideal for businesses seeking an agile CDP solution. Zeta offers an enterprise-grade customer data platform with real-time and scalable data management capabilities, including integration, cleaning, enrichment, unification, identity resolution, profiling, and more.

Why I picked Zeta: Zeta’s CDP offers insights into individual customers’ past purchase behaviors, real-time interests, channel preferences, and more. Consequently, you can segment audiences and create meaningful customer experiences. Zeta’s core AI engine and schemaless architecture ensure seamless data integration.

Their CDP also helps marketing teams uncover prospective in-market consumers with deterministic data and intent signals. Once businesses find these new customers, they can target and engage them through omnichannel interactions and customized content at scale.

Zeta Standout Features and Integrations:

One standout feature of Zeta’s CDP is its expansive identity graph that IDs anonymous visitors, whom you can then target across channels with memorable individualized experiences. The platform’s easy-to-use low-code visual interface lets you choose the identity resolution, unification, and data cleanliness standards for your business. Users can also achieve a unique depth of customer understanding, owing to the software’s deterministic datasets (750M+ identities globally).

Moreover, Zeta’s CDP is compliant with GDPR guidelines. Some other notable features of this customer data platform include campaign segmentation, contact and campaign management, event-triggered actions, predictive analytics and modeling, tag and template management and more. 

Integrations include 90+ third-party applications, such as Amazon Web Services (AWS), BigCommerce, Confiant, Drift, Freestar, Google Big Query, HubSpot, Listrak, MailChimp, OneSignal, SAP Commerce Cloud, WebEngage, and more.  

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Facilitates end-to-end data management and creation of marketing campaigns
  • Robust email marketing capabilities
  • Easy-to-use visual campaign builder

Cons:

  • Slow data load speeds
  • Buggy and outdated designs for email campaigns

Best open-source CDP for automating data integration, unification, modeling, and personalization

  • Pricing upon request

Pimcore’s modular CDP is an excellent open-source data management platform owing to its flexibility, 100% API-driven architecture, composable technology, quick time-to-market, and robust global partner network of more than 130 solution providers.

Why I picked Pimcore CDP: Pimcore’s CDP is adept at managing structured master data, digital assets, and all kinds of unstructured data. Pimcore’s CDP assists businesses in four major aspects—integration, unification, modeling, and data personalization. 

The tool can gather first-party, third-party, and individual-level customer data from various sources in real-time. It can then merge these datasets to create single customer views, after having identified the anonymized users and de-duplicating any inaccurate information.

Pimcore CDP Standout Features and Integrations:

One standout feature of Pimcore’s CDP is its enterprise webhooks feature. It can help you transform customer management by launching real-time marketing campaigns, distributing personalized information, and maintaining data homogeneity across platforms. The software also comes with a customer management framework plugin that automates any actions in the workflow and executes it using the integrated tools.

Additionally, Pimcore CDP emphasizes user-centric configuration, automatic validations, visual evaluations, and integrated analytics, to promote data governance. The platform also has robust ACL (Access Control List) and RBAC (Role-based Access Control) functionalities that ensure effective data quality management.

Integrations include tools like Adobe Commerce, Alumio, Celum, Drupal, eBay, Idealo, Matomo, Microsoft Office 365, Salesforce Marketing Cloud, Shopify, Snapchat, Cue Storefront, and more.

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • REST-based web service allows easy integration of features with other apps
  • Works on an open-source data model with a well-established partner network
  • Robust catalog and digital asset management

Cons:

  • Lack of advanced front-end capabilities
  • Platform is more suited to developers than business users

Best for collecting B2B and B2C customer data in real-time across systems for instant activation

  • Pricing upon request

Real-Time CDP, a product of Adobe Experience Cloud, is a complete data management solution that helps businesses integrate sophisticated workflows between marketing systems. Using this software, you can prospect for new customers, improve audience targeting, enhance top-of-funnel experiences, and more.

Why I picked Adobe Real-Time CDP: Adobe Real-Time CDP supports the data collection and management needs of both B2B and B2C businesses with pre-built integrations and design schemas perfect for advertising in both industries. It comes with features such as enriched privacy-compliant profiling and account-based targeting. The software also offers reliable identity resolution, tag management, and server-side event forwarding. Marketing departments can test precise client segmentation for individualized advertising and can instantly update customer profiles.

Real-Time CDP has an easy-to-use interface and integrates with Adobe’s Sensei GenAI. Leveraging its superior AI capabilities, Real-Time CDP can support automated audience creation, simulate new customer journeys using historical campaign performance, and continuously refine audience segments for hyper-personalization.

Adobe Real-Time CDP Standout Features and Integrations:

One standout feature of Adobe Real-Time CDP is journey orchestration which offers real-time customer engagement based on the lifecycle stage the customer is at. The product also updates in real-time across sources, allowing users to map complex customer journeys and activate data for them in the most targeted way. 

Additionally, the platform also allows you to enrich first-party data with partner data from hundreds of pre-built and custom integrations for improved customer insights and audience creation. Last but not least, Real-Time CDP offers a customizable data governance framework that incorporates data source labeling, policy creation, and automated enforcement, in compliance with data security laws.

Integrations include tools, such as products from Adobe’s Experience Cloud, like Adobe Journey Optimizer, Adobe Marketo Engage, Adobe Commerce, and Adobe Analytics, along with software like Amazon Ads, TikTok, Epsilon, LinkedIn, LiveRamp, Merkle, Snaplogic, Unifi, and more. 

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Effective search function for parsing customer data
  • Simple and easy-to-navigate user interface
  • Offers flexible customer journey touchpoints

Cons:

  • Lacks an intuitive toolbar
  • Steep learning curve for non-technical users

Best for data management, analytics, user journey orchestration, and predictive customer intelligence

  • 60-day free trial
  • Pricing upon request

mParticle is an infrastructure CDP that helps gather and unify customer data from multiple sources and channels. The platform helps plan marketing campaigns and track customer journeys. mParticle offers several robust capabilities, such as predictive analytics, multichannel data collection, customer sentiment monitoring, and campaign data management.

Why I picked mParticle: mParticle provides a suite of data integration and management features to collect data from the web, mobile, OTT (over-the-top), or cross-platform tools to create real-time audiences and orchestrate exceptional user journeys.

mParticle helps build a comprehensive customer profile and predict future campaign outcomes. mParticle breaks down data silos and provides valuable insights into segments through journey analytics.

mParticle Standout Features and Integrations:

One standout feature of mParticle is the activity overview. This dashboard is a centralized location for reviewing user activity analytics and audience usage of your data. It has three parts - the Main Dash that shows user activity analytics, including the total number of active users, average session length, installs, alerts, throughput, and revenue. The Identity Chart shows you a percentage of users with a particular identity and a percentage depicting the mix of multiple identities. The Configurations section displays the summary stats of all the configurations set up for input and output data within mParticle.

Besides this, the software has a Nested Audiences feature that defines criteria blocks for segment memberships and applies them across all relevant audiences using a simple workflow. mParticle also has a Forward-Looking Audiences feature that allows users to create segment criteria based on customer behaviors and event attributes to qualify for business impact in the future. Some other features of mParticle include data modeling, workflow management, and reporting.

Integrations include 250+ third-party applications, such as Abakus, Bluedot, Census, Datadog, Everflow, Flurry, Google Marketing Platform, Intercom, Localytics, Moengage, Pinterest, SendGrid, and more. 

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Debugs any data-related issues coming from internal or external bugs
  • Robust server data ingestion and audience segmentation capabilities
  • Connects different data sources at a single point

Cons:

  • Input data cannot be linked with non-customer related data
  • Lacks a more advanced querying interface within the UI

Best warehouse native CDP delivering value across the entire data activation cycle

  • Free plan available
  • From $500/month (billed annually)

Rudderstack is a warehouse native end-to-end customer data platform built to support your data strategy by collecting, unifying, and activating customer data. This means you have full transparency and thus, ownership of your data, and can build complete customer profiles in your data lake itself.

Rudderstack is an excellent platform for gathering events from many systems and linking them all in one centralized location. This enables you to have a comprehensive understanding of your customers and communicate with them via multiple downstream channels.

Why I picked Rudderstack: Rudderstack claims to be the first warehouse native CDP, offering its users full control of their data. It enables you to build comprehensive user profiles directly in your data lake (on-premises), without storing any of the data on their platform. You can also sync consistent data from your warehouse with 200+ out-of-the-box integrations and activate them quickly, leading to efficient data management. 

Moreover, Rudderstack comes with robust data governance features. You can enforce tracking plans, flag violations, and even manage PII by destination, thanks to its capabilities.   

Rudderstack Standout Features and Integrations:

One standout feature of Rudderstack is its reverse ETL solution combined with advanced event streaming functionalities. The platform makes it simple to route events to downstream tools for various product and marketing use cases.

With 16+ software development kits (SDKs) that can help you deploy enterprise-level event stream pipelines, Rudderstack enables significant savings in developer resources. Moreover, you can also drive event transformations using Python or Javascript to rewrite bad code, hit third-party APIs, and more. 

Integrations include 200+ third-party applications, such as Awin, Braze, Criteo, Google Analytics 4, Intercom, Leanplum, Marketo, Salesforce, Slack, Vitally, WebHook, Zendesk, and more.

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Clean UI
  • Includes reverse ETL (extract, transform, and load) and identity resolution features
  • Transformations feature modifies data en route to destinations

Cons:

  • Occasional bugs with the JavaScript (JS) SDK
  • Lacks data integrity features

Best Customer Data Platforms Comparison Chart

This comparison chart summarizes basic details about each of my top customer data platform selections. You can view pricing details and the availability of free trials or demos side-by-side to help you find the best software for your budget and business needs.

Tools Price
QuickBase From $600/month (billed annually), which equates to $25/user/month with a minimum requirement of 20 users. This is for the Team plan, which includes core features suitable for smaller teams. For larger organizations or those needing advanced features, QuickBase offers higher-tier plans, and pricing for these can be obtained upon request.
Bloomreach Pricing upon request
Segment From $120/month (billed annually)
Totango From $249/month (2 users + 200 customer accounts)
Customer.io From $100/month
Zeta Pricing upon request
Pimcore CDP Pricing upon request
Adobe Real-Time CDP Pricing upon request
mParticle Pricing upon request
Rudderstack From $500/month (billed annually)
Preview Image - <h2 class="c-block__title b-summary-table__title c-listicle__title h3" > Compare Software Specs Side by Side</h2>

Compare Software Specs Side by Side

Use our comparison chart to review and evaluate software specs side-by-side.

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Other Options

Here are a few more customer data platforms that didn’t make my cut but are still worth checking out:

  1. Treasure Data

    Best for powering connected customer experiences through unified user data

  2. Emarsys

    Best for fostering customer engagement through automated cross-channel marketing automation

  3. Tealium AudienceStream CDP

    Best for optimizing data infrastructure to develop single customer views

  4. Sitecore

    Best for capturing, unifying, and activating omnichannel customer data to drive exceptional customer experiences

  5. Medallia

    Best for collecting customer data using surveys

  6. Lytics

    Best CDP with cloud-data warehouse integrations and native generative AI capabilities

  7. ActionIQ

    Best for turning fragmented customer data into single customer views and orchestrating user journeys at scale

  8. Leadspace

    Best AI-powered B2B CDP tool with third-party data coverage to visualize, analyze, and optimize data and scoring models on-demand

  9. Salesforce Data Cloud

    Best for connecting customer data to deliver real-time insights using AI and automation

  10. Optimove

    Best for autonomously sourcing customer engagement opportunities across systems to optimize user journeys

Selection Criteria for Customer Data Platforms 

Now, you may be wondering whether you should trust recommendations from some stranger on the internet. This is why I’d like to explain how I curated my list of the top 10 customer data platforms. I evaluated and compared several industry-best CDPs using recent market research and reviews to narrow down the options.  

As a seasoned CX lead with years of experience in customer service, I then assessed each tool based on its core functionalities and key features:

Core Functionalities

Here are the basic functionalities that each of the ten CDP tools on my list possesses: 

  • Seamless integration with existing data sources, such as CRM systems, email marketing tools, API documentation, and other data repositories 
  • Strong identity resolution capabilities to unify customer data from multiple touchpoints and build comprehensive ideal customer profiles (ICPs)
  • Advanced segmentation of customer data based on visitor behavior and demographics

Key Features

In addition to the core functionalities mentioned above, here are some key attributes of the customer data platforms that made my list:

  • Supports data privacy and compliance: The tools I selected ensure and augment data compliance with global and local security standards such as GDPR and CCPA.
  • Has a user-friendly interface: Each of the CDP tools I chose has an intuitive and easy-to-navigate user interface for non-technical users to access and analyze customer data. They also come with customizable dashboards and reporting tools for data visualization.
  • Enables future-proofing through predictive analytics: The tools I selected are equipped with predictive analytics that allow businesses to anticipate customer preferences. This helps them plan for future enhancements and integrations as well as ensure adaptability to future customer data and marketing technology trends.

Usability

I offered my software recommendations based on the intuitiveness and accessibility of their UI for different users with varying levels of expertise. The tools also come with robust data visualization and reporting capabilities that make it easy for users to understand data trends and insights and generate custom reports. They also have onboarding resources, usage documentation, and responsive customer support teams.  

Data Security

The customer data platforms I’ve included in my list ensure the protection of sensitive customer data and compliance with both international and local compliance standards such as GDPR, HIPAA, and CCPA. The CDP tools also support role-based access control (RBAC) and authorization methods such as multi-factor authentication.

Software Integrations

The customer data platforms I’ve included in my list are equipped with seamless integration capabilities that enable them to fit into your existing tech stack like a hand in a glove. The tools exhibit compatibility with various data sources for the smooth exchange of customer data in an automated manner. The CDP tools also allow flexibility in integrations with custom third-party applications for data enrichment and personalized customer experiences.

Pricing

The customer data platforms I’ve included in my list come with affordable pricing plans, especially considering their array of customer data management capabilities. Pricing should be scalable, transparent, and offer value for money. I’ve also mentioned which CDP tools have free trials and plans so that you can choose one that aligns with your budget and long-term operational costs.

People Also Ask

Here are some relevant FAQs on customer data platforms that explain how they work in a bit more detail:

Why are customer data platforms important?

Buyers today interact with brands through more than a dozen touch-points. Subsequently, there’s a lot of data at play, especially when customers progress through your sales funnel. This is where customer data platforms (CDPs) are a real gem. A CDP tool integrates data from various sources to create comprehensive customer profiles. Consequently, you can target ideal prospects with personalized marketing campaigns and increase your conversion rates.

How do customer data platforms work?

A customer data platform (CDP) centralizes and assimilates customer data from diverse sources and marketing touchpoints to create unified customer profiles. These profiles encompass demographic data such as age, gender, location, etc. They also comprise psychographic data such as behavior, preferences, lifestyles, online browsing habits, interactions with the brand, and more.

CDPs enrich data consolidation and ensure proper data cleansing for accurate customer profiling. With CDPs, you can spearhead data-driven decision-making and personalized marketing initiatives. The best CDP software also has features to assist businesses in navigating the complexities of contemporary data management and privacy compliance.

In a nutshell, CDPs act as a single source of truth for your customer data. Subsequently, marketers can boost consumer engagement, loyalty, and overall marketing success.

What are the benefits of using a customer data platform?

Here are a few benefits of using a customer data platform:

  • Eliminates multiple data silos and transforms fragmented customer data into valuable insights
  • Offers sales and marketing teams a unified view of the customer
  • Leverages both historical and real-time data
  • Centralizes data into a single repository
  • Segments audiences based on demographic and psychographic information
  • Streamlines workflows for operational efficiency

Also check out how customer success strategies can help you drive customer adoption and reduce regular churn.

What’s the difference between a CDP and a CRM?

Customer data platforms (CDP) and customer relationship management (CRM) systems have related but somewhat different functions.

A CDP focuses on combining and centralizing customer data from multiple channels and sources to produce a single customer profile that enables data analysis for personalized marketing. A CDP emphasizes data consolidation and enrichment for effective targeting and conversion purposes. It can delve into primary, secondary, and tertiary data and enable customer segmentation and cross-channel personalization in real-time. CDPs prioritize first-party data instead of third-party data.

In contrast, a CRM focuses on sales, support, and relationship management while managing and tracking interactions with current customers to inform and optimize future campaigns. A CRM is focused on managing customer contacts and building connections. It frequently includes features like lead tracking, sales forecasting, and customer support capabilities. It can delve into first-party data only but cannot prioritize third-party data. CRMs also do not come with real-time capabilities.

Ultimately, both CDPs and CRMs are essential for customer engagement and retention and making sense of the B2B customer journey for further optimization and success.

What is identity resolution and how does it work?

Identity resolution is the process of accurately identifying and connecting data silos related to a single customer. The data comes from multiple channels and sources and helps create a comprehensive user profile. Here is how it works:

  • Data collection: A CDP gathers customer data from various marketing channels, including website visits, emails, previous purchases, chat interactions, and more.
  • Matching and deduplication: To match and eliminate repeated information, a CDP uses algorithms that examine identifiers to see if they are unique to one person only.
  • Identity stitching: Once the matches are discovered, a CDP unites the data elements to create a comprehensive customer profile.
  • Continuous updating: A CDP updates consumer profiles in real-time to reflect changes in preferences, behavior, or contact information as new data is gathered.
  • Personalization: With precise identity resolution, marketers can leverage data insights to craft tailored marketing strategies targeting ideal customer profiles with highly personalized content, offers, and experiences.

Check out which types of customer data you should be using to better understand your target consumers and personalize buyer journeys for them.

What is customer journey orchestration and how does it work?

Customer journey orchestration is the management and optimization of the entire customer experience through the design and automation of a sequence of personalized interactions and touchpoints across various channels. Here is how it works:

  • Data integration: A CDP gathers customer data from multiple sources, such as CRM systems and marketing automation platforms.This data includes customer demographics, behaviors, preferences, and interactions with the business. There are several ways to collect customer data, and with a CDP, you can do so while staying GDPR-compliant!
  • Customer segmentation: Marketers categorize consumers based on their demographic and psychographic insights derived from a CDP.
  • Journey mapping: Businesses further develop graphic blueprints of the customer journey for each segmented audience group, outlining key touchpoints and interactions. These journey maps detail the customer’s actions, decision points, and potential paths toward conversion. This is where customer journey analytics help extract valuable insights from customer interactions and implement those to map the path toward positive business outcomes further.
  • Personalization: Marketers then customize content and communications for each consumer category using the data they’ve acquired. The campaigns can then be used to target the relevant audience segment using various automation solutions including email, SMS, social media channels, and the company website.
  • Optimization based on feedback: Marketers can continuously optimize journey maps for an effective customer experience by monitoring and analyzing user interactions in real-time, thanks to a CDP.

Ultimately, customer journey orchestration ensures that customers have consistent and effortless brand experiences across all touchpoints. This further encourages customer satisfaction, loyalty, and thus, retention.

Other Customer Data Software Reviews

Before you switch tabs, you can check out these other types of software if you’re interested in managing customer journeys and ensuring memorable customer experiences:

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Choosing the right customer data platform for your business can be overwhelming. However, it can help you centralize and unify visitor data from numerous sources and create comprehensive customer profiles. This further enables you to personalize user experiences and improve customer engagement, satisfaction, loyalty, and retention.   

I hope my guide helps you select the ideal CDP tool for maximizing the potential of customer data and streamlining its management for effective marketing, sales, and customer service operations, resulting in sustained business growth.

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