By Mohona Dutta | Reading time 6 mins

In simple terms Customer Data Platform or CDP can be termed as packaged software that creates a tenacious, integrated customer database that can be accessed by other systems.  Basically, it’s a prebuilt system that unifies customer data from various sources and then makes this information available to other systems for marketing campaigns, customer service, and all customer experience initiatives.

Data Platform in B2B companies - AhaAppsToday, let’s talk about how B2Bs have been employing a CDP for simplifying data, centralizing segmentation and audience creation, and delivering effective multi-channel campaigns.

According to the CDP Institutes’ latest research, “34 percent of B2B companies plan to start deploying a customer data platform (CDP) in the next year, compared with just 19 percent of B2C companies”. Interest in CDP has grown drastically since 2016. The original placements were primarily among retail and media companies selling to consumers, the concept has recently fascinated B2B marketers ushering noticeable traffic.

Rise of CDP

As today’s B2B buyers are habituated with fast, frictionless, and personalized buying experiences as a consumer, they bring those lofty expectations to their roles as B2B buyers. They are technically savvy and comfortable engaging via digital channels, which means their data is scattered across various systems. Without amalgamated customer data, it’s difficult for companies to personalize experiences with B2B decision-makers. B2Bs have longer and more complex sales cycles that create huge volumes of data, and the relationship-driven nature of this kind of business requires a rather obstinate and an all-inclusive view of the customer across the entire buyer’s journey.

Why do B2B companies need CDP?

A CDP connects all kinds of customer data, be it structured or unstructured, dynamic or historical. Regardless of whether the sources are internal or external. B2B companies generally have a smaller customer base with a variety of information available on each account, with CDP a more comprehensive view is ensured.  It provides B2B organizations with the means to combine customer data and gain a 360-degree view of customers. This unified data is significant for gaining insights, from better account divisions to forecasts about customer behavior, which is the main impetus behind intelligent and personalized experiences. While there are several enterprise software solutions available to help B2B companies engage with customers, a standalone CDP is also essential.

What does CDP do?

CDP brings together customer data from different sources viz. CRM, ERP, email, website, POS, cases, partner systems, and social networks like LinkedIn – and executes identity resolution at the contact and account level to generate integrated profiles for individuals and accounts. The data collected with AI creates insights – accounts to target, content to share, products to be recommended. Insights are activated when they are integrated with business applications and tools like sales applications, marketing applications, workflow, and analytics. The platform doesn’t just provide a comprehensive view – it helps zero in on specific moments on the B2B buying journey, which can improve customer experience quality. In today’s competitive market, a strong CPD is an indispensable tool for delivering personalized B2B experiences.

Few benefits of CDP

Single pane for customer information:  CDPs are built to collect data from various sources, amalgamate the information to create a comprehensive view of the customer across devices and channels, and then make that data accessible to other systems.

CDP is agile:

CDP provides companies a tool to create and connect a flexible solution that adapts to the dynamic consumer behavior and changing technology tendencies. By concentrating on the data foundation, CDPs gives businesses tools to collect data from everywhere

Accessible to all:

Marketing, business intelligence, customer service and beyond all depend on the availability of data to drive your business forward. A CDP makes information accessible to all.

Effective marketing and enhances customer experience:

Customers are digitally aware of what works for them using omni-channels and devices and they bring these high expectations for being delivered a satisfactory experience, every time. With a CDP in place, companies gain a comprehensive view of customer behavior that can be used to drive the most effective marketing campaigns and create enthralling customer experience possible without blind spots.

Ease of operations:

The task of assimilating point solutions and establishing new technologies and applications used to be resource-intensive. With CDP’s centralized customer data with maintained turnkey integrations, you can save hours of integration work.

In conclusion

In a world where B2B brands are looking to engage customers in a more meaningful way across the entire buying journey, this tool could not be more enticing. In order to deliver personalized experiences at scale, companies require a foundation to understand and engage their target customers in an effective manner. Most companies will look for those benefits, but priorities will differ based on your business type and existing resources. In some cases, the B2B CDP will be a new product added to your existing solutions; in other situations, the CDP might replace an existing analytical tool.  What the CDP won’t replace is your CRM: those perform functions that are not built into a typical B2B CDP. Instead, CDP will integrate with your CRM, to gather data from them and to share the profiles it creates. Talk to us to know more.

Author’s bio:

Mohona is a Content Writer for the Marketing team in AhaApps since 2019. When she is not busy attending to her creative, technical side, she likes to binge on sitcoms on Netflix. She loves writing poems and reading short stories when she wants to break away from the humdrum of life.

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