In our new Tealium’s Take, we explore 2024 Customer Data Platform (CDP) trends. We explore the data from the 2024 State of the CDP report, and discuss the findings it shows about AI/ML, data privacy, governance, cross-department collaboration, customer retention, and more.

What is the 2024 State of the CDP report and how is it helpful? 

The 2024 State of the CDP report is our annual report comprised of a global survey with about 1,200 professionals across I.T, Operations and Marketing. It provides a comprehensive overview of the evolving landscape and trends that are shaping the CDP category. 

There are a few things to note from the 2024 study this year. One of the primary takeaways is how companies are focused on customer experience and the need for a unified data set across the organization so that they can react and provide great customer experiences in real-time. What’s interesting is how CDPs have become critical in helping companies comply with current privacy regulations and prepare for future changes, as well as providing the right data available for Artifical Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) projects.

The findings indicate that companies are very satisfied with their adoption of CDPs to meet these objectives. What we found is that 89% of companies that have a CDP stated high levels of satisfaction in meeting their business goals over the past 12 months compared to only 60% of companies that don’t have a CDP.

It looks like a common theme year over year is how the bar for CX gets increasingly high and this report shows how every part of the organization is touching that goal to deliver better CX. What do you feel this year’s report highlights about how organizations are using customer data… Specifically, how do they use CDPs to tackle these immense challenges?

I think this is the fifth year of us running this report, so it’s interesting from year to year to look at the common questions and see different challenges become more important. And I think CDPs are pretty unique in that they can address many different use cases from one system. That’s because it ultimately holds your view of the customer that is standing between customer experiences and the insights that you have as a business.

One thing that stood out as far as a trend this year was that customer acquisition overtook data privacy as the number two use case for CDPs. When you think about it, customer data is about a customer, somebody who’s already bought before. But now we’re seeing that the acquisition use cases (as things like third-party cookies go away) are becoming more important.

It takes an entire organization to manage customer experience, so the less siloed you can be in doing that, generally the better the result for the customer. There are all these new customer data practices and capabilities to accommodate these changing customer expectations and then market forces around privacy, technology, etc.

Are companies using CDPs to break down these data silos and deliver real-time conversations with their customers? How does that work? 

I think that one of the big takeaways from this report is just how much CDPs are shifting into a kind of holistic ownership across the organization.

So, one question we ask is about who owns the CDP and ultimately who utilizes the data from the CDP. On the top, you see who tends to own the system on the bottom, you see who utilizes data from that system. I think one really interesting thing is number one… How widely the CDP data is used?

Two, historically people have talked about CDPs as if they’re a marketing system. I think it’s pretty clear from the graphic on the top that the I.T. department is normally the one running it. And I think with good reason because ultimately that’s an enterprise service. So by having it own it, every department across the company can benefit from that data. And ultimately when you have a less siloed view of the customer. The customer experience is what wins at the end of the day. 

There are new systems and new players in the CDP space. Could you tell me about how this impacts planning business operations and then how it meets customers at the moment and helps focus on customer retention as a whole?

Customer retention has always been a team sport. While CDPs have traditionally been thought of as a marketing system, at the end of the day, they all hold the customer data. And now with first-party data becoming such a big priority, all departments are starting to want that customer data and use that customer data.

I.T. has become such a key player because it’s not just about the data in the CDP. It’s also about the data in your enterprise, in your data warehouses, in your other systems. So it’s not that more systems are being bought… It’s that more systems and more data are being used, and they’re being integrated to give you a lot more options within your business organization.

It’s almost like the data layer for the enterprise is finally becoming one unified data layer, and it means everybody has to come and integrate with that data layer in some way. And that’s really what everybody’s driving towards. 

The age-old rule of “garbage in, garbage out” is just increasingly important with AI and ML. Were there any findings in the report that highlight what organizations should be doing right now? And are companies prioritizing data compliance as fines and regulations become increasingly prevalent in today’s society? 

We are finding that almost every company this year has AI in their mandate. Every board, and every CEO has been asked to deliver on AI this year.

What we saw in the report was 91% of our customers and the respondents are using the CDP data for AI. Now that makes sense because the CDP data tends to be filtered, organized, and consented. That’s really the big part is there’s not going to be any AI without compliance because AI is a black box and everybody really wants to understand how the data is being used. CDPs have become critical for AI initiatives because they really organize the data, make sure it’s exactly compliant for AI, and then send it to the AI systems.

And in the case of Tealium, we’re able to activate that data back from the AI systems and make sure that the businesses can take action. So in addition to AI compliance and just in general, data fidelity has become absolutely critical this year. 

Download your copy of the 2024 State of the CDP report today!

Post Author

Natasha Lockwood
Natasha is Senior Integrated Marketing Manager at Tealium.

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