7 Must-have customer data platform capabilities

Learn the ins and outs of the core capabilities that make up a dynamic customer data platform – and the additional ones that increase customer satisfaction and ROI.

Martina Ivanović

Senior Content Marketing Specialist

Providing a superior customer experience is the competitive advantage many companies strive for.

But creating interactions that feel personalized and relevant to customers can be complex, time-consuming, and expensive – especially if you have multiple data sources and siloed systems.

The most efficient solution is to use a customer data platform (CDP) to unify data from multiple sources and create smarter, customer-centric interactions.

Here we’ll dive into the main capabilities your customer data platform should have if you want to deliver tailored customer experiences at scale.

Core customer data platform capabilities

The core capabilities of any customer data platform are to collect, unify, and activate data. If you’re looking at a more comprehensive one, analytics are often a part of the core capabilities too.

Customer data platforms allow for scalability and flexibility as customer journeys change – and help businesses adapt to current needs and trends.


The first step for any customer data platform is to collect data from all and any existing databases.

CDPs can collect data from internal and external sources such as zero-party, first-party, second-party, and third-party data through APIs, native integrations, and SDKs – regardless of the format.

This includes:

  • structured data such as purchase transactions and customer address details
  • semi-structured data such as web interaction logs
  • unstructured data such as chat transcripts or social media comments

CDPs also collect behavioral data. For example, if a customer installs an app or abandons their cart, a customer data platform will collect details such as which items were in the cart or what email address was used to download the app, which can be used for personalizing future interactions.

With manual or automated import options, a customer data platform makes it easy for you to track customer behavior in one place.


Once you’ve imported all your existing data, a customer data platform can notice patterns and unify this data to create customer profiles. These profiles contain everything that pertains to a specific customer including previous interactions, channel preferences, purchase history, loyalty statuses, and more.

One of the main goals of a customer profile is to help marketing and support teams improve personalization and segmentation.

A robust CDP creates a Master ID for each customer. In other words, it links personal identifiers such as an email address or mobile number to a permanent ID – eliminating duplicate profiles or multiple customer IDs.

For example, suppose you have a connector or integration. In that case, a CDP can track users from the moment they enter your brand’s website – registering them as an anonymous visitor and tracking behavior, such as pages viewed or products researched. Once the website visitor logs in or creates an account, the information collected from their anonymous visit is added to their profile.

This gives marketers and agents a full view of a customer’s interactions, their preferences, and interests so they can decide on what steps to take next.


Once your existing data is collected and sorted, a customer data platform can use it to create new data such as lead scoring, predictions, recommendations, and aggregated metrics.

It also makes it easier to segment and target specific groups of customers based on their behavior and demographics to help you improve communication and boost sales.

For example, you might segment customers between the ages of 18 and 30 who purchased basketball shoes as a group to target for your next campaign that promotes a new shoe collection. This will help you save time and money by not sending your messages to customers who only purchased football products from your brand and are unlikely to purchase basketball shoes – increasing the results of your campaign.

A CDP can take this information further by tracking each customer’s response to your campaign messages and predicting if they’re likely to make purchases like this again in the future. It can also make product recommendations based on these interactions to increase a customer’s likelihood to buy and help marketers understand which campaigns to target them with.


The long-term storage in a dynamic CDP allows for better analysis of your customer data. Customer data platforms with analytics and reporting capabilities can help you analyze trends, measure customer lifetime value, and determine the likelihood a customer will buy or a customer’s propensity to churn.

The more data that is imported to a CDP, the more accurate its analyses will be.

In the long term, these analyses can help you make data-driven decisions to re-engage customers, improve experiences, and increase retention.

Additional customer data platform capabilities

Using a customer data platform as a part of an omnichannel solution can give you access to additional features and capabilities that can improve your customer communication.

Customer engagement

Pairing customer data with an omnichannel customer engagement solution, for example, can help you set up trigger-based messages, tailor communication, and send personalized recommendations based on customer purchase and interaction history.

Marketers can also use the customer data to set up:

  • segmentation – use drag and drop attributes, user behaviors through your website or mobile app, and other segments to build out powerful campaigns
  • predictive scoring – predict customer behavior such as who is likely to churn, purchase, click, or convert soon
  • retargeting – connect your customer data with advertising data, create optimized audience segments, and automate the whole process to improve retargeting

Petpetgo, a top-charting pet supplies eCommerce company in Taiwan, used Infobip Moments to build targeted and relevant campaigns, optimize customer interactions, as well as orchestrate and deliver personalized messages via SMS and email.

The company also used Infobip People CDP to manage its customers and inventory database by tracking two attributes: customers and products.

The attributes helped Petpetgo set up three types of messages:

  • Notifications: feedback surveys, order statuses, and logistics updates
  • Educational messages: product assembly tutorials, feeding tips, and animal-related information
  • Promotional messages: specific campaign information, e-coupons, and unique offer campaigns

As a result, the company doubled purchase frequency and reduced advertising spend by 10%.

Customer support

A contact center solution powered by a customer data platform can give agents a 360-degree view of customers, improve routing – connecting customers with the right agent on the first try, and provide agents with in-depth insight about customers based on conversation history and previous contact center interactions.

Leveraging customer profiles can help agents expand personalization capabilities. For example, a customer might contact an agent about the company’s return policy. The agent can access the customer’s profile to see when and what their last purchase was and provide customer-specific details, rather than general information.

Beam&Go, a payment and digital marketplace that empowers migrant workers, used Infobip Conversations and People CDP to improve messaging and targeting on multiple channels, including:

  • Email: With proper customer segmentation, email campaign open rates improved by 22%, and the clickthrough rate increased from 1% to 3%.
  • Viber: Promotional campaigns on Viber achieve an impressive 40% open rate


A customer data platform can also power-up your chatbot and AI assistants through enriched profiles and tailored journeys based on demographics and behavior. You can also gain valuable insight such as chatbot conversion rates – keeping track of sessions that result in purchases, registrations, or downloads.

UNICEF, the United Nations Children’s Fund, already had a huge amount of customer data, including customers’ preferences and preferred communication channels. Infobip People CDP helped bring all this data into one central location to build segments and relevant customer journeys, and to optimize campaigns.

With the power of segmentation, UNICEF is now able to segment its donors based on data, behavior, preferences, analytics, and stage of the journey.

To personalize messages and ensure they’re sent at the right time, UNICEF was now able to set up communication flows for each stage of the customer journey triggered by donor behavior, such as:

  • Welcome messages
  • Thank you for your donation/purchase
  • Check out what’s new
  • Special occasion greetings
  • Cart abandonment reminders
  • Transactional notifications

This resulted in a 7.8% increase in donor retention, 33.3% decrease in donor churn rates, and a 4% conversion rate.

Personalize every customer interaction

Whether you want to boost customer engagement or improve customer support – a comprehensive customer data platform could be the answer to some of your business challenges. Using an all-in-one platform eliminates data siloes and makes it easy for your teams to work together, get to know your customers, and exceed expectations.

Learn about the role digital channels and cloud solutions play in customer engagement and support based on 153 billion+ interactions that took place on our platform.

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Mar 7th, 2023
7 min read

Martina Ivanović

Senior Content Marketing Specialist