New Winterberry Group Research Deconstructs the Confusion Revolving Around Customer Data Platforms

Winterberry Group, a specialist management consultancy that supports growth initiative in advertising, marketing, media, information and technology, released new research: “Deconstructing Customer Data Platforms: Myth vs. Reality.”  Developed over the past four months, the research deconstructs the confusion brands are experiencing with Customer Data Platforms (CDPs) by defining the category, outlining use cases and presenting a long-term outlook for the CDP market.

Based on interviews conducted with more than 40 CDP and martech leaders, and an online survey, Winterberry Group found that there’s a strong need to clarify not only what a CDP is and isn’t, but also how these platforms can deliver value to marketers. While more than 100 companies describe themselves, or are described by others, as a CDP, fewer than 20 are true CDPs according to Winterberry’s definition:

  • Platforms that are able to ingest and integrate customer data from multiple sources; offer customer profile management; support “real-time” customer segmentation; and make customer data accessible to other systems.

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“Customer Data Platforms have emerged as a solution for the ever-growing speed, volume, variety and governance requirements of customer data,” said Michael Harrison, managing director at Winterberry Group. “Unfortunately, the market is rife with confusion and misconceptions about CDPs’ capabilities. Our new research clears that up and delivers a step forward for brands seeking to leverage these platforms to improve their customer experience and embrace digital transformation opportunities.”

The research paper gives clarity on the CDP market by providing:

  • The core capabilities of all true CDPs
  • Adjacent/alternative solutions (sometimes called CDPs) and how they compare to true CDPs
  • The top use cases for CDPs, including those for the middle-market, B2B companies, regulated industries and marketing services businesses
  • A process for determining if a CDP is a fit for a brand’s marketing needs
  • A long-term outlook for CDPs

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“As the marketing stack continues to evolve, and consumers require hyper-personalized experiences across all interactions with brands, understanding the best application of martech and adtech software is critical,” says Chris Lanaux, chief technology officer from Acxiom. “Acxiom serves as a trusted advisor to many of the world’s largest brands, helping them address their enterprise-class data management and identity resolution needs and determining how CDP software could help address specific use cases.”

“Many people forget that the B2B CRM category, which is now an $80B market, was rife with confusion in the 1990s and early 2000s,” said David Spitz, CMO of mParticle. “The B2C-oriented CDP space has the potential to eclipse its B2B antecedents, but like any emerging market, it is dependent on information symmetry to function efficiently. Winterberry Group’s report is a critical step in separating the signal from the noise so that this important category can reach its full potential.”

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