What is a customer data platform (CDP)?
A Customer Data Platform (CDP) is software that combines data from multiple tools to create a single centralized customer database containing data on all touch-points and interactions with your product or services. This database can then be segmented in an endless number of ways to create personalized and targeting campaigns for either marketing or sales.
What does a CDP do?
The best way to understand what a CDP does is to look at an example. Say a company, Dun & Bradstreet, is trying to build marketing campaigns and needs to better understand their customers to ensure the right message is delivered at the right time.
Dun & Bradstreet uses the CDP the collect data from touchpoints that happen across the various tools and platforms used at the company. Examples, are Facebook, Google, Salesforce and even the company website.
The CDP will collect all of these data points and consolidate them into a single unified customer profile. This profile can then be used to do segmentation within the CDP to build audiences that can be made available to other platforms.
The work done by the CDP boils down to three things:
- Identity Resolution – Unifies customer information from various channels and platforms to create a single view for each record.
- Segmentation – The process of combining important customer data points to build an audience.
- Activation – Pushing the audiences to the various tools and platforms in the stack for the purpose of running real-time, personalized campaigns.
The data that makes up a CDP?
(1) First party data - is data that is your own internal data. It will exist within your own tools and systems. There are two types of first-party data.
- Account & Contact level data - This data represents organizations and people that are associated with organizations. You may already do business with them or seek to do more business with them.
- Event Data - This is touchpoints or engagements that you have had with your accounts and contacts. Examples of event data are:
- Touchpoints marketing has had with leads
- Opportunities that have been created by your sales team
(2) Third party data - An example of third party intent is D&B's own intent models. These models are built to detect which accounts are searching for key words that you have told us are valuable to you. When we detect that accounts are searching for specific key words, this intent can be used to include an account within a personalized marketing campaign.
Both first and third party data are brought together within the CDP to create a single unified profile of your customers.