Somewhere along the way, the idea of having a 360-degree view of your customers ended up going in circles. Maybe data warehouses were to blame, but companies started to believe that, once they consolidated all of their customer data in one place, a complete, prescriptive, view of their customers would magically appear. It didn’t, mainly because data itself does not equal insight. So, marketers went back to the tried-and-true formula of demographic data plus their marketing instinct, and the dream of one-to-one marketing withered in the latest iteration of demographic segmentation. But the dream is still alive, though in a different form: the customer data platform (CDP). Modern, smart hub CDPs are very different from data warehouses. They aren’t interested in all your data. In fact, they’re not interested in 90 percent of your data. Their focus is on the 10 percent of data that captures customer behavior and intent. We call this behavioral data, and it’s some of the easiest data to track in your business, but also some of the most overlooked. Data freshness matters Behavioral data tracks a user’s actual behaviors across channels: the products they click on, the pages they visit, the articles they read, how often they read them, and so on. CDPs can collect this data through a tag management system that then exposes the affinities and insights related to this behavior. Netflix is a great example of how companies can use this data. They track behavioral data to know what shows I like to watch, how I like to watch those shows (e.g., am I a binge watcher?), and what the connections are between the shows I watch (e.g., do I like a particular genre, actor, director?). One of the key distinguishing points between behavioral data and demographic data is freshness. Not every marketing use case requires real-time data (In fact, most don’t.), but they do need recent data. A CDP doesn’t care what you did 10 years ago because that has little to no bearing on your behavior today. And a CDP doesn’t care what your age or income group is interested in because that doesn’t reflect your interests. The right data + the right data science Data science is a trigger word for some marketers, synonymous with black-box solutions that replace “trust your experience” with “trust our machines.” For that reason, it’s crucial that CDPs start with tangible, understandable, and measurable use cases that demonstrate their value from the beginning. For some examples of great use cases, check out our recent blog on CDPs in the media industry. It’s hard enough to get channels to align on a unified marketing strategy; getting them to align on a new technology that directly affects their numbers is an even harder hill to climb. Recognizing this, we designed our CDP solution to support real use cases within days of setting it up, which is really impressive in an industry where months (or years!) to ROI is the norm. Lytics’ data science technology is complex stuff, but it’s designed for marketers and not data scientists. And we’ve even got a Data Science for Marketing guide that makes it a lot simpler to understand. The content affinity scores, customer momentum scores, and lookalike models that Lytics generates are easy to use and actionable. The customer 360 reimagined Perhaps most importantly, Lytics builds customer behavioral profiles with built-in identity resolution across channels, which gives marketers a 360-degree view of customer intent and interests. Ultimately, that fresh 360-degree behavioral view is far more valuable than a 360-degree view of the 100 percent of customer information collected from the beginning of time and which probably includes third-party demographic data that may have no value at all in discerning customer intent. As I said at the beginning, there is no magical solution to getting a complete view of your customer; it’s a combination of data selection and science. When you view your customers as changing individuals, rather than a collection of static interactions and statistics, you’ll gain a much better perspective of what your customers really want. If you want to find out more about the data science underpinning Lytics AI decision engine, check out our Data Science for Marketing Guide.