Blog June 22, 2023 |

What B2B Marketers Should Look for in a Customer Data Platform

The B2B marketing landscape is constantly evolving, driven by advancements in technology, changing consumer behavior, and shifting market dynamics. As fellow B2B marketers, we understand how tough it can be to stay ahead of the curve.

For instance, the rise of ecommerce has transformed how consumers shop, and B2B buyers now expect similar online experiences. As a result, B2B marketers need to adapt and create personalized, ecommerce-like interactions with B2B buyers throughout the funnel. At the same time, the emergence of generative AI technologies has the potential to automate manual tasks, increase experimentation with AI-generated content, and enable the types of personalized experiences that B2B buyers expect at scale.

However, tightening budgets and a softening macro-economic environment mean B2B marketers can expect increased scrutiny from procurement teams. This leaves B2B marketers with a dilemma: how do we deliver on a great buyer journey while optimizing current technologies and resources?

In our view, driving bottom-line results depends on providing the best buying journey – and that depends on having systems in place to deliver value to buyers and buying teams at every stage of the sales cycle. B2B marketers need access to unified and actionable first-party data that they can use to power their buyer engagement strategies while maximizing their current investment in marketing technologies.

BlueConic’s CDP can help you get more out of your existing martech technologies AND reduce internal and external dependencies, support faster, higher-quality decision making, and decrease the time and effort to get from insight to action. While most CDPs feature similar core functions, such as data unification, analytics and reporting, and buyer profiling, they are not created equal in the value they can deliver to the organization. If you’re thinking about investing in a CDP, consider these six factors to prove ROI on the technology in the long term:

  1. Data integration: As a B2B organization, you likely have multiple data sources, such as CRM systems, marketing automation platforms, and transactional databases. Since integrating these diverse data sources into the CDP can be complex, be sure to assess the CDP's ability to connect and integrate with existing systems, data formats, and APIs, while also considering any potential data migration challenges.

  2. Data privacy and compliance: Like their B2C counterparts, B2B marketers need the ability to proactively address evolving consumer data privacy regulations, without the expense associated with compliance assessments and system and process changes every time a new law comes out. Look for CDPs with robust privacy and consent management features, including the ability to request and capture consent based on your objectives (e.g., collect emails to personalize communications, track browsing behaviors to optimize the website experience), automatically federate that consent across systems and platforms, and easily respond to disclosure and right to be forgotten requests.

  3. Account-Based Marketing (ABM) support: ABM is a key strategy for most B2B organizations, focusing on targeting specific accounts rather than individual leads. B2B CDP buyers should look for platforms that support ABM initiatives by providing account-level data aggregation, segmentation, and personalized marketing capabilities. These ABM-focused capabilities make it easier to align sales and marketing efforts, nurture target accounts, and drive revenue growth.

  4. Ease of use: Like B2C marketers, B2B marketers need the ability to make informed decisions and orchestrate personalizes experiences that are responsive to the customer in real time. However, you may face challenges in extracting meaningful insights from your data due to a reliance on IT and analytics teams and other manual or time-consuming process. Be sure to assess how well a CDP empowers non-technical business users with easy-to-use advanced segmentation, lifecycle orchestration, and predictive modeling capabilities.

  5. Scalability and future growth: B2B buyers need to consider the flexibility and scalability of a CDP to accommodate new data sources, formats, and channels, and the increasing volume, velocity, and variety of data. Since assessing the CDP's ability to handle expanding datasets and integrations can be challenging, look for a CDP that aligns with your long-term growth plans.

  6. Vendor expertise and support: When evaluating a CDP, it’s critical to assess the expertise and support offered by different vendors. This includes vendors that not only have domain knowledge, industry experience, and a proven track record of successful implementations, but also provide strong vendor support, training, and ongoing services to ensure the successful adoption and utilization of CDP technology.

CDPs can play a vital role in powering B2B marketing and customer engagement strategies, but it's essential to do your due diligence before buying. By carefully assessing your options based on the aforementioned features, you can make more informed decisions and ultimately choose the CDP that best aligns with your long-term growth plans.

Related Resources