Personalization is a concept open to wide interpretation – its meaning seems to be, well, personal. One man’s integrated marketing is another man’s personalized customer experience. But at heart, personalization is about persons. And this is why the customer profile is, or should be, at the heart of anything calling itself a personalization solution.
Here are four questions you can use to evaluate the customer profile capabilities of any personalization solution.
1. What data does the solution contribute to your customer profiles? For example, does it create segments based on customer context or actions or social data? Is the profile persistent across sessions and devices?
2. How is data created by the solution made accessible to other systems? or, Where and how is solution’s customer profile data stored? For example, if the solution models customer behavior to make predictions that are potentially useful for marketing campaigns, marketing automation tools need access to that data.
3. What customer data is used by the solution? Does it use current behavior, past behavior, order history, personal preferences, segmentation, third party data, social network data? Is the solution designed to accept and use any data you feel is useful?
4. What control does the solution give to customers over the use of their profile? Can they opt out of tracking, or constrain the use of their social data, or request anonymity at times?