Multichannel to omnichannel — it seems like it happened overnight. It’s now essential to be able to engage and provide services to members, consumers, patients, and constituents wherever they are on the customer journey, regardless of device or channel. Even more important is having a unified view of the individual across their entire journey and the ability to predicatively engage and prompt the “next best action.”
Yet this is one of the greatest challenges organizations face today, especially those with numerous products or service offerings where an individual’s record may reside in multiple, databases, CRM platforms, or record-keeping systems.
How do you create a single view (data record) of a customer, keep the record updated in real-time, and have the ability to orchestrate their journey through all channels?
The answer lies in a customer data platform (CDP). This rising technology “glues” an organization’s disparate platforms, record keeping systems, and/or databases together to serve as an intermediary creating a centralized customer view powered by analytics, machine learning, and journey orchestration — and enabling real-time, intelligent interactions.
Coupled with customer engagement tools, a CDP provides a single point of control over data, decisions and interactions. Because it delivers a unified view of each customer along with analytics to determine next-best actions and intelligent orchestration, it empowers organizations to execute personalized customer journeys in an individualized context and cadence. This translates into highly relevant experiences in real time across all digital and traditional touchpoints
Let’s take a closer look at why CDP technology can be a game changer.
Content is key – but it’s only as good as your customer data
To engage customers and elevate their experience, personalized, contextual messages are most effective — whether through marketing outreach or ongoing interaction and services. But content is hard to get right and can be the Achilles heel of an omnichannel strategy if it’s not built from good data and knowing when and how to best reach consumers across channels.
For an omnichannel business strategy to make its mark and be most effective, organizations need to be able to fully access, use and gain insights from their customer data.
If your data is disparate and disconnected because of siloed technology across different systems and multiple lines of business, it’s difficult to accurately determine consumer preferences and develop good strategies for meeting their needs.
With and effective CDP solution, you can integrate disparate systems and platforms to intelligently gather and assemble data, gain critical insights into customers, share knowledge and communicate across all channels. Applying analytics at various touchpoints throughout the customer journey you can anticipate, gauge, and motivate consumer behavior and further embolden strategy. CDP technology can become the heart of your omnichannel strategy.
CDPs are helping organizations overcome the shortcomings of fragmented data that are inhibiting their ability to effectively market to and engage customers.
Companies that lack high velocity real-time capabilities can make big gains with CDP technology, applying analytics and A.I. to strategically predict next best actions for their customers and optimize their journeys through visioning and orchestration. As they improve digital convenience and personalization for their customers, they can improve customer retention and reduce the average cost of serving customers.
With CDP, organizations can handle more complex and larger volumes of data and even draw upon channels like IOT device and other streaming channels as engagement mediums to augment their customer view and deliver a full spectrum of digital interactions.
Evaluating the technology
CDP solutions are quickly creating a unique niche in the customer engagement space. When evaluating this technology, look for solutions that combine the following capabilities:
- Robust platform
- Real-time aggregation engine
- Dynamic golden record
- Any source, format, type
- Real-time continuous updates
- API access for touchpoint recognition
- Real-time analytics
- Predictive engine
- A.I. studio
- Machine learning
- Next best action
- Intelligent orchestration
- Personalization Engine
- OmniChannel Optimization
- Real Time Decisions
Applications in a services environment
Patients and consumers increasingly expect personalized and highly relevant experiences from services-oriented organizations. Omnichannel strategies powered by CDP can be a big differentiator in influencing the customer or patient experience, while building engagement and loyalty.
Here are some examples:
Healthcare organizations are embarking on omnichannel journeys and CDP is becoming a differentiator in how effectively they can engage patients and motivate healthy behavior. Using digital tools in CDPs, providers can gain new insights from data, create holistic customer experiences that make it easier to select health plans, schedule appointments, fill prescriptions, interact with practitioners, and stay on track with wellness from whatever device or channel desired. Data can be harnessed to personalize and enhance the journey, for example sending reminders to a patient to take medication at the right time. CDPs will be critical in the ability to capture disparate data from across the healthcare consumer journey.
In comparison to retail, these consumer journeys and interactions are much more complex and the stakes significantly higher when people are health decisions. But CDP technology presents an opportunity to make significant advancements in improving the customer experience — and whether it's cost-savings or avoiding a trip to the emergency department, have a significant impact on consumers' lives.
Let’s get more specific with a detailed example of applying CDP application in the Travel and Leisure industry for a family looking into a vacation cruise. Using CDP technology, the cruise company can send and track omnichannel marketing outreach and log potential interest and inquiries. When the family signs up for a cruise, the platform automatically prompts the sending of a welcome kit via mail and email along with an invitation and instructions on downloading the cruise line’s mobile app. Web and mobile app provide links and videos on what the family can expect on their cruise, required documents/passports and what to pack. Proactive pre-trip messages generate excitement through daily count downs and fun facts. When traveling, the mobile app lets the family keep track of the calendar of events, destinations and locations via GPS, link maps and activities. Attractions advertise at key moments prior to and at destination sites. The mobile app enables group linkage and activity tracking for friends and family. Digital payment services allow pre-pay and discount offers. Loyalty program and digital payment inspire booking of the next cruise. Business analytics indicate the services most used and by what demographic, and shape more customized interactions. And overall the personalization and timeliness of all these omnichannel communications build value for the cruise company and a positive experience for the customer.
With the rise of these technologies and capabilities, organizations with a high volume or demand for customer interactions, and those with many silos of data should take a hard look at them and their associated services. They can be delivered in various models for a variety of industries and are a critical differentiator in the ability to achieve success in omnichannel communication and elevating the customer experience
Conduent’s OmniChannel Communication Solutions are at the forefront helping organizations in all industries achieve breakthrough success engaging consumers across every channel. We’re breaking new ground with our Customer Experience Management (CXM) services. Click here to learn more.
About the AuthorMore Content by Dharma Rajagopalan