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The unified customer profile is a critical element of modern-day operations as it lets companies get a 360° view of customers. However, only some companies know how to manage it. Therefore, businesses of all sizes need to find the best model to approach it, and they need to think of the tools, people, and processes involved.
In this episode of The Marketing Rapport we welcome Barry Padgett, the CEO of Amperity, to talk with Verisk Marketing Solutions host Zora Senat. Barry explains why companies struggle with the unified customer profile. He also explains the importance of data, primarily first-party information, in providing an exceptional customer experience and the problems B2C brands want to solve through platforms like Amperity.
The Unified Customer Profile Is a Challenge Many Companies Don’t Know How to Deal With
“The two approaches we see out in the wild. One, a brand buys a CDP. The customer data platform (CDP) seems like a no-brainer that you’re going to get your customer data cleaned up as part of that deployment.
In reality, when you look at the CDP category, there’s a concentration of companies, tools, and platforms that skew heavily toward marketing automation activation, journey orchestration, and campaign building and segmentation. But they ignore the fundamental and underlying problem of the data being super messy.
And it’s hard to make those tools work the way they’re designed to work unless you clean up the data first. And so, many CDP companies punt on this tough problem.
The second scenario is that you see brands trying to build this themselves. […] Cast your mind back 20 years ago. Most companies tried to build their CRM and billing systems. And fast forward to today. It’s suicide to build your CRM tool or billing system.
In either case, brands must be clear about the use cases and understand what they’re trying to solve. […] The answer doesn’t necessarily have to be constantly trying to transform everything in your stack digitally. Sometimes cleaning up the data and feeding that stack better data yields incredible results.”
The Main Problems B2C Brands Are Looking to Solve Through Platforms Like Amperity
“It’s probably three things. One is the ever-present need to find new customers. And the cost of acquisition of new customers is going up, not down.
Secondly, in reaction to the cost of acquisition going up, we’re seeing more companies spend more programmatically to retain their existing customers. It’s less expensive to retain a customer and upsell and expand that relationship than it is to acquire a brand new one.
And then, you’re seeing a lot of spending and interest right now in reaction to the cookie going away and the mobile ad ID going away. I don’t think anybody has a crystal ball that predicts what’s going to happen next year.
But there is a scramble within the world’s brands to establish a first-party data graph by understanding their customers.”
How the US Market Differs From, Say, the European Market in Leveraging Consumer Data
“It’s a mixed bag. If you take the global brands out of the equation for a moment and talk about national or local. In some ways, national markets have it easier in the sense that they serve a smaller market. They have a smaller population of potential buyers, and that’s both a blessing and a curse.
The blessing is that it is a little easier to know them; the curse is that you have to figure out how to grow your company with a smaller number of potential customers. When you think about mass automation, there may be an opportunity to do some things internally when your customer base is able to be managed in the size of a spreadsheet as opposed to an AI-based cloud data warehouse.
On the flip side, they both have an opportunity given what we see with GDPR in Europe; it’s a catalyst to go and do something. And they have to, whether they are going to or not, start figuring out access and opt-in rights and make sure that they’re serving the right customers and have permission to do so.”
[10:19] “Unifying customer data has a far-reaching impact. It’s economics for sure and profound. But how we think about the overall experience, the journey towards centricity, our employees, and their ability to delight customers. There’s never been a better time to get deep into the gut and finally unify that customer profile.”
[17:03] “As marketers, having that broad visibility and philosophy around every engagement, and every touchpoint being an opportunity as opposed to someone else’s problem, is awesome.”
[25:23] “Working with other companies and jointly delivering customer experience is where we’ll see more companies leaning over the next couple of years. But of course, the prerequisite is that you get your customer data fixed up and get it in an accessible, digestible, federated, and rateable format so you can do things with it.”