Marketing teams often find it tricky to fully grasp and make use of all customer data available to them.
Here’s where enterprise customer data platforms (CDPs) come in.
They give a complete and up-to-the-minute snapshot of what customers are up to, and it makes business decisions far easier.
What is a customer data platform?
A customer data platform (CDP) is a management platform used to collect and unify customer data from multiple sources into a single customer profile.
What does a customer data platform do?
A CDP serves as a single repository for customer data. Here are some key benefits:
- Real-time data – marketing teams can make decisions based on up-to-date information.
- Personalized experience – a CDP get you tailor the customer journey based on the detailed customer profiles.
- Predictive analytics – relies on machine learning to predict customer behavior and trends.
Why is CDP important for marketing?
A CDP platform provides a unified customer view and also integrates third-party data for greater insights. You can then use it and get your audience segmented for more personal marketing.
Some CDPs may get you to send the marketing content to the users automatically. Xtremepush is one of the most robust enterprise customer data platforms that is perfect for email marketing, SMS campaigns, and customer service, and these are all marketing channels.
CDPs vs. other data management solutions
Have you faced some other data management platforms and are wondering what are the main differences between them? Let us explain what unique advantages CDPs bring.
CDP vs. DMP
➡️ CDPs: focus on long-term customer relationship management
➡️ DMPs: more geared towards short-term audience segmentation.
CDP vs. CRM
➡️ CDPs: give you a full picture of what your customers are like, and show you everything from their habits to how loyal they are.
➡️ CRMs: manage customer interactions.
CDPs vs. ECDP
➡️ Both CDP and ECDP: improve the customer experience.
➡️ but ECDP offers also:
Enterprise CDPs can manage a lot of data without any trouble.
They typically come with better tools for analyzing data and smarter features.
An enterprise also provides stronger protection for sensitive customer information.
How to choose the best enterprise customer data platform
Picking the right enterprise customer data platform really matters — it’s going to change the way you do marketing and interact with your customers. It touches everything: keeping track of customer info, how you run your marketing campaigns, or what the trends are.
Below are some elements to consider when choosing the right one.
01 Determine your budget
Starting with a budget will get your choices trimmed down a bit. Enterprise CDPs have different ways of setting prices — some look at how much data you have, others look at how many people are using the platform or what features you need. Remember, the price that you need to pay for a CDP isn’t everything.
Think about the costs that will come up later for upkeep and growing your setup. If your budget’s off, you might have to give up some key features or the ability to expand later. Look at the whole cost, including what you might spend to bring in new customers, to make sure the platform fits your budget.
Don’t forget to add in what you’ll spend to add new tech and think about the returns you’ll get from better customer interactions.
02 Identify what tools are needed
Make a list of all the special tools your marketing team uses for things like deep data analysis, working with data right away, or making predictions based on data.
When you know exactly what you need, you can pick out CDPs that have these features.
You won’t end up spending money on things you don’t need or, even worse, missing out on tools you really need to get the job done. For example, if you use Google Analytics a lot for your marketing, make sure the CDP works well with it.
When you have a bunch of tools at your disposal, you can make marketing content that work and people enjoy.
03 Map out business goals
Get to know what you want to achieve in the long run. Maybe you want to keep your customers coming back, get more value out of them over time, or just give them a more personalized experience.
In any case, the goals should help you pick a CDP that fits with your big-picture plans. Choose a platform that can grow and change with your business.
The match-up like this is key to give your customers a steady experience and getting the business insights you need. Figuring out the goals also lets you determine how well you’re doing with analyzing your customer data.
04 Check essential CDP features
A reliable CDP should bring together all the customer info in one place, work with data instantly, and use smart tech for future predictions.
So, take a close look at what features it has and compare them with what you seek and what you want to achieve in your business. Things like segmenting your audience, connecting with outside data, and using smart tech can really make a difference.
Go for platforms that give you lots of different features, like figuring out who customers are across different places and pulling in data from offline.
05 Verify integrations
Check if the CDP works well with the systems you already have, like CRMs, DMPs, or any other marketing tools. If it doesn’t, you might end up with disconnected data, wasted time, and a patchy view of your customers.
Pick a platform that’s good with API integrations and has a strong network of tools and services — it’ll make your investment last longer.
Connecting with big marketing platforms or clouds is a big advantage. Particularly, if you want to create large-scale digital experiences for your customers.
06 Other important considerations
Things connected to data safety, such as following laws like GDPR, and having good customer support, are now more crucial than ever.
Even though these might not be the first things on your list, they’re really necessary to keep your business running smoothly.
Think about whether the platform can deal with lots of customers and give you a complete look at each one, which is great for understanding your customer data better.
And an easy-to-use interface matters a lot as well. It would be a way easier for your team to work using the platform.
07 Figure out your use cases
The use cases might be automating marketing campaigns, real-time audience segmentation, or customer behavior analysis, or others. Get clear on these points, so you can pick a platform that really works for you.
Then, you can interact with your customers in a more personal way. And also use the insights you gain to boost your customer service and how you engage with people.
Top 8 customer data platforms
We’ve highlighted the strengths and weaknesses of the top eight platforms. They all deliver valuable features, but there’s one that stands out as a leader in the industry. And it is…
Xtremepush is the top pick for CDP platform.
And it’s got a lot of features that satisfy individual customers and large audiences alike.
It’s a breeze to use thanks to its user-friendly interface, and it may connect with the other systems you’re already using.
One of the standout points is how it thoroughly analyzes customer data, and the offers useful insights based on that. And with analytical support like this, you can give your marketing strategies a real boost.
On top of it, you can:
- benefit from real-time accuracy as the CDP tracks and updates customer profiles instantly
- enjoy a Single Customer View through intelligent identity resolution across devices
- eliminate data silos, so that data is always accessible and ready for action
- collect and unify different data types, such as transactional, behavioral, preference, subscription, and interactions
- reduce customer churn by combining recent behavioral data with historical transactional data
- increase wallet-share with hyper-personalized content and offers
- use segmentation capabilities for advanced targeting
- have access to predictive analytics
If you’re on the hunt for a CDP that’s packed with features and really delivers them, this is the one for you.
Bloomreach is great for digital experiences, but it doesn’t quite deliver on real-time CDP.
Features are not as easy to use as Xtremepush’s. If you’re working with a complex set of tech tools, Bloomreach might not be flexible enough for your needs – the options for integrating customer data are quite limited.
The tool offers decent features with a focus on customer engagement, but it lacks the depth of analytics and real-time data capabilities.
Insider does a good job with marketing channels, but it doesn’t deliver as personalized a customer experience. Its handling of customer data isn’t as strong, which might make it a less appealing choice for businesses that really want to base their decisions on data.
Klaviyo is primarily an email marketing automation platform, and its main shortcoming is that it does offer some CDP functionalities.
The platform is more suited for email campaigns rather than offering a complete customer view. It also lacks advanced features like machine learning and predictive analytics, which are essential for modern marketing strategies.
If you’re looking for a tool with real-time data and analytics capabilities, you need to look further. Optimove falls short in providing these.
It seems more geared towards keeping current customers around than getting new ones, which might not work for everyone. Its customer data engine is also not as powerful as Xtremepush, and its capabilities in creating unified profiles could be better.
#6 SAP Emarsys
SAP Emarsys is a well-known name in the industry, but the platform is often criticized for being too complex and not user-friendly.
They have a bunch of great advantages like AI, easy onboarding process, or automations. However, the fact that it takes some time to get used to this tool at the beginning and high costs make it less accessible for smaller businesses.
Also, users complain about the basic reporting.
Unfortunately, its capabilities in customer data streams aren’t as robust as other’s, and it doesn’t provide the same level of insight into customer behavior. Users also report confusing interface and that the data that they get via mobile app differs from the platform desktop version.
Totango is more suited for customer service rather than as a full-fledged CDP.
#8 Treasure Data
You can find very handy features in the Treasure Data offerings, like the intuitive UI, integrations, or analytics.
But it’s got some shortcomings. Users point out that the dashboard’s capabilities are not the best, and they need to rely on external dashboarding software. Plus, data exploration and visualization features are not intuitive enough.
Conclusion on enterprise customer data platforms
First, thoroughly analyze what you want your tool to do for you. Once done, come back to this review and choose the platform that you find the most useful.
Each of these platforms has pros and cons, but Xtremepush is the one that shines among the rest. It’s got everything that is crucial for a successful CDP.
It’s the right choice for businesses that are serious about using customer data smartly.
Why wait? Try Xtremepush! Book a demo today.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) About Customer Data Platforms
How does Bloomreach Engagement differ from other CDPs?
Bloomreach Engagement specializes in digital experiences, but it does not provide real-time CDP features. There are a lot of capabilities for connecting with your audience. But it’s not that easy to use, and it doesn’t have that strong in-depth customer analytics.
What are customer identities and how do CDPs manage them?
Customer identities refer to the identifiers that distinguish one customer from another. CDPs like Xtremepush provide accurate, unified profiles. It’s super helpful for businesses, because they can segment audiences based on the identifiers and create customized marketing messages for each segment.
How do CDPs handle anonymous users?
CDPs can track data from users who haven’t identified themselves (so they are anonymous) and then bring that data together once we know who the user is. Businesses can understand the buyer journey from the initial touchpoint, then.
Can CDPs offer personalization at scale?
Yes, advanced CDPs can scale personalization. They use machine learning algorithms and advanced segmentation tools to provide relevant content to the users.
How secure are customer records in a CDP?
It all depends on the protocols a CDP platform adopts. But most of the tools put in extra security steps to make sure all the customer information is kept and handled safely, complying with regulations like GDPR.
What role do active customers play in CDP analytics?
They play a huge role. Active users provide data, and later, CDPs carry out analytics on these customers. Businesses get insights that shape the way they communicate and advertise products or services.
How do CDPs integrate with third-party tools like Google Ads?
Most CDPs feature prebuilt integrations with third-party tools, and some even allow for custom integrations. For example, you can use API in Xtremepush. With API, you can add more tools to your marketing tech setup and make the most of your customer data.