Study: Only 11% Of Brands Can Effectively Use Customer Data

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A new study conducted by Forrester Consulting and commissioned by Oracle has found brands are struggling to create a unified view of customers.

The November 2019 study, “Getting Customer Data Management Right,” which includes insights from 337 marketing and advertising professionals in North America and Europe, found brands want to unify customer data but face significant challenges in bringing different data types together.

Brands Want to Centralise Customer Data

As consumers expect more and more personalised experiences, the ability to effectively leverage customer data is shifting from a “nice-to-have” to table stakes:

  • 75 per cent of marketing and advertising professionals believe the ability to “improve the experience of our customers” is a critical or important objective when it comes to the use of customer engagement data.
  • 69 per cent believe it is important to create a unified customer profile across channels and devices.
  • 64 per cent stated that they adopted a CDP to develop a single source of truth so they could understand customers better.

Unified Customer Profiles Lead to Better Business Results

Brands that effectively leverage unified customer profiles are more likely to experience revenue growth, increased profitability and higher customer lifetime values:

  • Brands that use CDPs effectively are 2.5 times more likely to increase customer lifetime value.
  • When asked about the benefits of unified data management, the top two benefits were increased specific functional effectiveness (e.g., advertising, marketing, or sales) and increased channel effectiveness (e.g., email, mobile, web, social media).

The Marketing and Advertising Opportunity

While marketing and advertising professionals understand the critical role unified customer profiles play in personalising the customer experience, the majority of brands are not able to effectively use a wide variety of data types:

  • 71 per cent of marketing and advertising professionals say a unified customer profile is important or critical to personalisation.
  • Only 11 per cent of brands can effectively use a wide variety of data types in a unified customer profile to personalise experiences, provide a consistent experience across channels, and generally improve customer lifetime value and other business outcomes.
  • 69 per cent expect to increase CDP investments at their organization over the next two years.


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  • Anne Miles 5 months ago

    Could this be because many are still measuring by outdated demographic profiling and therefore don’t have data around how customers could really be segmented – by values, needs, interests, behaviour, what they care about? Time to drop demographics including gender and age at the very least! If we then start to measure the right things then we have a data set. This is a symptom of an outdated way of measuring.

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