This week we saw interesting and exciting announcements from Adobe and Salesforce. They both announced their Customer Data Platform (CDP) offerings, which seem to be in different stages of development. We will discuss our detailed thoughts on these product announcements in future blog posts once they share more details. But, to start with, we want to extend a hearty welcome to Adobe and Salesforce to the Enterprise CDP party — a party AgilOne started and been at the forefront of for several years already.
Both announcements acknowledge the excitement about CDPs, the legitimate need for CDPs, and that many brands are in the midst of their CDP initiatives. Both announcements acknowledge the definition of a CDP to include, at a minimum, the following features:
- Bringing transaction and interaction data together from multiple data sources
- Identity management as the critical core of the CDP
- Customer intelligence powered by AI is a key part of a CDP
- Driving customer engagement based on this rich data and insights in a CDP
In fact, we at AgilOne have been saying this all along. We worked with analysts (the CDP Institute, Gartner, and others) and the market to arrive at this definition of a CDP based on our exciting and growing enterprise customer base.
Contrast that with how less than a year ago, these and other vendors dismissed CDP as a passing fad, while at the same time they made attempts at partial solutions that were not well received by customers or analysts. The market forces were too strong for them to continue this approach. Now they are acknowledging and building their own CDP offerings, perhaps finally with an understanding of why CDPs became a “marketing category that enjoyed instant attention,” as referenced in Salesforce’s announcement.
AgilOne’s enterprise-grade CDP has been used by brands for many years as they reaped the benefits of a CDP, and we evolved our platform based on real client usage. Other brands, still grappling with what a CDP is and trying to gain customer adoption, don’t have this same benefit of experience and platform maturity that is a response to real world use cases. Because of this, we have a unique perspective:
- We have learned that brands have their data sources spread across enterprise applications from Salesforce, Oracle, Adobe, IBM, SAP, applications from many other vendors, plus custom and homegrown applications. For most brands, a pure walled garden doesn’t exist.
- During these years, we developed the AgilOne enterprise-grade CDP, hardened it in production with usage and massive data processing for all our clients, and enhanced it with additional modules based on client feedback (see our case studies for more details).
- We’ve learned that no two brands are alike and configurability is critical to a CDP. (Read about AgilOne’s unique approach to configurability and how this supports enterprise use cases).
- Enterprise CDP goes far beyond adoption by digital marketing teams. A CDP is also used by, and provides benefits to, Customer Service, Customer Analytics, Data Science, and all teams that benefit from having access to unified customer intelligence.
All these new entrants to the CDP party will need to go through the same growth curve as they move from this announcement stage to actual customer usage. However, we are happy that these announcements could help accelerate the market adoption of CDPs and thus increase the adoption of the AgilOne CDP. So, Salesforce and Adobe, we welcome you to the enterprise CDP party and to a growing and exciting market!
P.S. We will be back with our thoughts on their product announcements in another blog post (though we are not holding our breath for those vendors to develop and publish more details any time soon…). Until then, here are some interesting articles for your reading enjoyment: