There is a misguided belief amongst brands in all industries that first-party data is inherently valuable—it’s not. First-party data is only valuable if it can be translated into actionable insights that enhance a brand’s understanding of the customer. In other words, extracting customer intelligence from first-party data is where the true value lies.
However, most brands don’t have the technology, resources, or infrastructure to execute the extraction process. They lack both the artificial intelligence-enabled tools as well as the requisite third-party data set (the bigger the data set the better in most cases) to get the job done.
This performance gap makes it difficult for brands to do a number of things that contribute to their overall relationship with consumers:
- Extract max value from their CRM systems.
- Merge offline customer data with online data.
- Connect with consumers across channels and devices.
Surmounting these challenges is why it’s so critical for brands to bridge the gap, and learn to extract customer intelligence from first-party data.
Pulling customer intelligence from first-party data
Bridging the gap requires a willingness to partner with an external organization that specializes in the acquisition and processing of digital signals that can enrich a brand’s first party data.
In forming such a partnership, brands enhance their ability to monitor customers and their behaviors across all devices and channels.
Over time, that leads to a clearer picture of who the customer really is:
- Hopes, dreams, desires
And what’s going on in the customer’s life…are they:
- In between jobs?
- Moving to a new city?
- Marrying or starting a family?
Therefore, these are the insights brands need to create marketing collateral and campaigns. The kind of campaigns that are informative, aspirational, and personalized to the prospective customer.
Moreover, it allows brands to see how individual consumers—as well as the broader consumer audience—are evolving in real time. It eliminates the need to make bold predictions about who the consumer will be a week, month, or year from now.
Instead, brands can see who that consumer is at this very second. Thus allowing for real-time optimizations that boosts marketing performance today instead of six months from now.
Applying customer intelligence from first-party data across the entire journey
In order to develop an effective system for extracting customer intelligence from first-party data creates value in three key arenas:
- Pursuing net new customers.
- Upselling existing customers.
- Retaining existing customers.
While brands love to use their marketing and data-based insights to acquire new business and extract more value from current customers, it’s arguably the third arena that’s the most valuable.
This argument is strong considering the state of the economy is making it difficult to:
- Acquire new customers
- Convince existing customers to spend even more
Factor in the old adage that it costs 5X as much to acquire a new customer as it does to keep an existing one, and the fact a 5% improvement in retention can increase profitability by more than 90% and it’s easy to see why quality customer intelligence is so important beyond acquisition.
To learn more about what it takes to extract customer intelligence from first-party data, check out this helpful post on identity resolution in a real-world scenario. Or this post on identifying intent within a consumer audience.