Improve Customer Experiences and Marketing Performance with a Single Source of Customer Truth

Almost every digital customer interaction results in data that marketers can collect and analyze. Every click, view, download, like, share, comment, and review can be a treasure trove of insights that can help you understand customer preferences, interests, and behaviors to develop relevant, meaningful, and engaging communications strategies.

But there’s one major challenge blocking the view to such clarity.

Many organizations have their customer data scattered across multiple internal and external systems of record. Some of these databases integrate for easy data transfer and synchronization, while others don’t. This data dispersion prevents marketers from gaining a comprehensive view of their customers and from making accurate, fully informed decisions.

To unlock the full power of data- driven marketing, brands must bring all disparate data sources together into one system of record to create a single source of customer truth.

What is a single source of customer truth?

The concept of a single source of truth (SSOT) is rooted in the principle that any piece of data should exist in one place and one place only. An SSOT is a central repository that houses data from multiple sources. The information is cleaned, organized, and reconciled so teams from different departments can make decisions based on unified information and insights.

Why is a single source of customer truth hard to achieve?

Pulling together data from disparate sources and making them play nice with each other isn’t as simple as “plug-and-play” integration. Sources store data in different formats, so you must first clean and transform the information into a unified structure before using it for analysis. This extract and transform process is particularly tricky if you have unstructured data that can’t be neatly classified into rows andcolumns on a spreadsheet.

Data availability can also be a hurdle. While collecting customer information is relatively easy, some systems aren’t designed to share data outside of its environment — causing issues during extraction. Meanwhile, information without metadata (i.e., a description of the data) can prevent analytics software from drawing relationships among data entries to connect the dot and yield insights.

Moreover, many organizations have to contend with poor-quality data, which can be caused by faulty business processes that misrepresent the relationships among the information. Even if the data unification process is flawless, the results can still lead to inaccurate insights and misguide decision-making.

How a single source of customer truth improves customer experience

A SSOT allows you to build 360-degree customer profiles to support customer journey mapping. You can use these profiles or personas to inform granular audience segmentation that deliver the most relevant content in the right place and at the right time. With your customer profiles, you can also create “look-alike” profiles which are made up by people you may not be marketing to currently that look, act, and behave like your best customers.

It has been proven that a high level of personalization helps attract prospects and retain customers. In fact, 88% of marketers surveyed that are using personalization saw measurable results from their efforts, and 80% of consumers are more likely to purchase from brands that offer personalized experiences. An SSOT allows sales and marketing teams to deliver targeted media campaigns and content across all touchpoints based on prospects’ interests, preferences, demographic information, and past interactions with your brand to optimize their experience throughout the customer journey. An SSOT also helps teams improve operational efficiency and increase employee productivity because they don’t have to spend hours digging through multiple data sources to find what they need.

Data-driven marketing improves accountability and performance

Data-driven marketing finally brings an end to the saying, “Half my advertising spend is wasted; the trouble is, I don’t know which half.” By tracking individual customers’ interactions with your brand throughout their buying journey, you can improve the customer experience to introduce more accountability to your customer-facing initiatives.

Create a single source of customer truth with a robust customer data platform

The foundation to establishing a SSOT is a customer data platform that can help you turn raw data from disparate sources into actionable insights. With AdScience®, Imaginuity’s proprietary customer data platform, you can collect data from first-, second-, and third-party sources to create rich, actionable customer and look-alike profiles and gain granular insights into purchasing behaviors.

You can then analyze these data sets to create fully integrated media campaigns targeting both customers and look-alikes that efficiently connect the dots of multiple media touchpoints across the customer journey.

Once ready for execution, AdScience activates customer data by sending it out to various marketing platforms like CRM systems or marketing automation tools to support campaigns that deliver the right message to the right audience at the right time. AdScience updates in real-time based on data collected from all sources. The more you leverage the data, the more you learn, and the more you can increase engagement and improve media campaign performance to elevate your customer experience.

Finally, AdScience creates highly actionable data visualizations that show your campaigns in action— what’s working, what isn’t and where opportunities are for enhancement and optimization.

Learn more about AdScience today.

About the author:


For over 20 years, Imaginuity has been combining imaginative thinking and innovative technology to create transformative results for our clients, their customers, and our people. Our services and platforms manage complexity to improve marketing outcomes.