Did you know that every day we generate around 2.5 quintillion bytes of data in the world? That’s a lot! This data is very valuable to organizations like yours because it helps answer important questions about customers, such as how they make purchasing decisions. Therefore, it is key that companies can collect, store, analyze, and use this customer data in an organized way, a process that is called Customer Data Management (CDM).
Lack of control over your customer data creates inefficiency and problems when making decisions. Customer Data Management represents a strategy to regulate how your company can use its customer information. Using CDM ensures a consistent way to generate your most valuable insights and maintain data quality. It has become essential to accompany the day-to-day of your organization with a process and policies to govern the use of our clients’ data. This represents a safe and reliable way for companies to collect, analyze and use their customer data.
A CDM system is made up of three stages, which guide companies in managing data, information and insights about their customers:
- Type of customer data.
- Data platform.
- Data management process and its use.
Let’s analyze each of them in detail…
1. Type of customer data.
Structured and unstructured data.
Only 20% of the data you generate in your organization is structured and easy to analyze. The remaining 80% is unstructured, complex data that represents a difficulty in analysis and standardization. It is important for a customer data management system to be able to identify between the different sources and types of data based on their structure, in order to anticipate the standardizations that will be needed to make the most of them.
Identity and behavioral data.
You also have to consider the types of data that your company can count on based on the information they provide. Identity data represents personal information about the customer; The importance of these data lies in the possibility of understanding the different profiles of a company’s clients, taking advantage of psychographic information to characterize them. They are generally obtained from direct customer transactions with your organization.
Behavioral data represents information collected from any customer interaction with the organization, as well as the actions they took to communicate with you. This data is used to better understand the different points of contact and intentions of the customer during their journey with your company. Clear examples are the data obtained from browser cookies.
Quantitative and qualitative data.
Last but not least, the data that your organization obtains can be quantitative or qualitative. Quantitative data allows obtaining specific metrics. Clear examples are internet metrics, offline interaction metrics, campaign metrics, etc. These hard pieces of information are gathered from helpdesk solutions, digital platforms, CRM systems, and marketing automation tools.
On the other hand, qualitative data is characterized by not being structured and by containing a greater level of depth, which makes it difficult to represent in conventional numbers, statistics or graphs. Some examples are customer comments, reviews, opinions, and complaints. Any type of information that cannot be directly translated into specific numbers falls into this category. Qualitative data can also be obtained from feedback tools and processes, such as social platforms, customer chats, etc.
2. Data platform.
When identifying the types of data that your company will use for the study and understanding of your customers, you need to define which platforms can help you.
Companies typically use two main types of platforms. On the one hand, Customer Data Platforms (CDPs) allow the study of your own customers, offering detailed information on each and every one of them. A very common example of CDPs are the famous Customer Relationship Management (CRM) systems. At Huenei we have extensive experience in the retail sector, where CRMs are very important, and we can help your company develop one that is tailored to its specific needs.
On the other hand, Data Management Platforms (DMPs) handle third-party data, so the user profiles that are created are completely anonymous. There are several companies that provide this type of services and databases to carry out an in-depth analysis of the segment in general, beyond the specific customers of your company.
3. Data management process and its use.
To manage the data with the help of the defined platform, a process common to other systems that use data must be considered, which consists of the following steps:
- Data collection, that is, having procedures to obtain customer data: online behavior, market research, among others, as well as a structure that allows an ETL process to be carried out.
- Preparation of the data, to have them organized and ready for later analysis. In these instances, it is very useful to have a person in the company who knows how to use database management languages, such as SQL.
- Data analysis, to generate actionable and useful statistics, reports and visualizations for decision making.
- Validation and use of data, that is, taking these results and reports to the platforms used by the team in order to take advantage of them and support decision-making.
As you can understand after reading our brief introduction to the world of customer data management, this process is essential for organizations to understand consumers and provide them with a better service. These systems can help you stand out from your competitors, and at Huenei we will be happy to help you in their development.