Today, customers have almost limitless ways engage brands, using all kinds of devices across hundreds of touch points. This is the new normal, and the amount and complexity of digital information will only grow in the future. At the same time, potentially-available customer data already exceeds the ability of most organizations to harvest and process it. The good news is that new technology exists, in a field called Identity Resolution, to help connect the dots.
What is Identity Resolution?
Forrester describes Identity Resolution as “…a key enabler for contextual marketing that connects multiple sources of identity and customer information to support robust targeting, personalization, and addressability across multiple touchpoints and devices. Complete identity resolution marries multiple sources of identifier and interaction information to form a cross-channel view of the consumer.”
Nowadays, customer data comes from two broad sources – online and off-line. Activities like store visits, service calls, contact-center interactions, etc., are non-digital and take place off-line. These engagements nonetheless can provide important insights that must part of any comprehensive customer profile. Digital (online) data from website visits, eCommerce transactions and Social Media engagements also must be captured, organized and stored. Some of this data will be anonymous. Identity Resolution tools not only help integrate off-line and on-line customer data but also match both anonymous and identifiable data to individual customer records.
The ability to accurately identify customers is essential for all marketing activities. Never have the rewards for getting this right been greater, or the risks for falling short of the competition been more severe. The winners over the next decade will be the companies that commit today to developing capabilities to both harvest and analyze data and serve customers across all possible channels of engagement. Over the next several weeks, look for further posts that will delve deeper into Identity Resolution: its components, its strategic importance and the opportunities and risks inherent in implementation.
Integrate off-line and online customer data to create seamless, holistic customer profiles. In this in-depth interview, Barton Goldenberg discusses a new technology called Identity Resolution that makes this possible.