Keith Dawson's Analyst Perspectives

Teradata Vantage CX: The Real Customer Data Platform

Posted by Keith Dawson on Dec 8, 2020 3:00:00 AM

Teradata is not a name that is commonly associated with the customer experience marketplace, but that is likely to change as customer experience (CX) practitioners wrestle with the problems created by the multiple streams of data thrown off by the many applications and customer touchpoints they have to manage. Teradata’s Vantage CX is a tool for ingesting and managing customer information at great scale, combining the functions of a modern CDP with the analytics that makes customer data actionable.

In order to build a customer experience process, a business needs to track the many pathways that customers take to interact, whether in-store, on the phone, by mobile device or web. Traditionally, each of those interaction data points lives in separate applications, managed by diverse teams within the enterprise. Corralling that data into a manageable form is the holy grail for creating beneficial experiences, but to date it has been more of an aspirational process than a reality.

The CDP is a transitional technology that emerged to fill the empty space between applications, meeting the need for data ingestion, cleansing and making it available to people who need it, all in real time. The role of the tool is to gather data, streamline it to a common profile and hand it off for interactions with a customer through personalization across marketing, sales and commerce.

Teradata Vantage CX is an advanced CDP, aimed at organizations that need a more sophisticated approach geared toward marketing use cases for customer data. The technology best appeals to the marketing and analytics professionals, suggesting that within large enterprises there is an awareness that broad-spectrum data is the fundamental building block needed to compete for mobile, digitally oriented customers.

Teradata has a powerful platform with utility and value for CX. It does function as a CDP, but it also incorporates many features that we would expect to see in a broader CX or digital experience platform: channel orchestration and journey management, for example, as well as the analytics, modeling and prediction capabilities that allow CX professionals—not just marketers—to meld marketing, sales and service operations into a seamless whole. It is the analytics element that is distinctive; it is what allows each stakeholder a greater degree of insight into the whole of the customer journey, and makes them accountable and measurable at the same time.

Ventana Research asserts that through 2023, three-quarters of organizationsVoice_of_the_Customer_2 focused on the customer experience will lack the ability to monitor and optimize experiences across interaction channels. The reason for that gap lies in the lack of visibility into data that has been siloed away from relevant actors. Marketers do not see the behavior and intent data held in the contact center. Service centers do not know whether a customer is in a valuable targeted audience segment. Marketers see customers as groups; contact centers see them as individuals. And so on.

Numerous CDP point-solution players are quickly being acquired by the large business application and CX suite vendors precisely because those huge vendors recognize the gap in their portfolios. Those gaps frequently include the tools needed to ingest and integrate data from across the customer experience: from siloed marketing, sales and service applications. Vantage CX, though, is not an integration afterthought. It is purpose-built by a company that specializes in analytics and data management, and has a long history in data Ventana_Research_Benchmark_Research_Customer_Analytics_13_Top_Benefits_of_Customer_Analytics_190824warehouses and now data lakes that have been used to store and analyze customer data.

Vantage CX hits all the necessary bases for advanced customer analytics. It provides root cause insights into customer service issues. It uncovers relationships between customer behavior and actions that contribute to both cost control, reducing the number of calls that come into centers, and to revenue growth, boosting cross-sell opportunities. Ventana Research has found that increased sales is cited by half of businesses as a benefit of customer analytics.

Teradata has been engaging organizations with Vantage CX vertically, identifying telecom and financial services as its key markets, largely because this CX platform has the quickest time to value for organizations that are already using the Vantage data platform.

Organizations that are going through digital transformation projects are the most likely candidates for deploying Vantage CX. These are the firms that have already done the spade work in auditing and identifying the mishmash of tools and processes that cross paths between departments. CX operations have usually gotten along by encountering a new data source, process or contact channel, and then layering a narrowly focused analytics tool on top of their tech stack to find the answers to whatever business problem emerges. That old method of technology purchasing and deployment creates the very siloes that rub against good CX and the need for CDP. It is possible that going forward, organizations in the middle of the market that aspire to grow are going to look at the strategies of the largest enterprises—toward centralizing, integrating and building cross-departmental processes—and see broad suites like Vantage CX as a better bet than combining numerous point solutions.

Organizations should take note of the fact that this robust CDP-plus offering is coming from an IT- and data-centric software provider, and not from the communications or contact center sides of the CX industry. Buyers of CX tools should be more aware of the capabilities inherent in vendors they may already be doing business with via their IT, back office or data management and analytics software suppliers.

Organizations can leverage Vantage CX to help ensure they have a centrality of data to key, customer-facing business processes, and the benefits of implementing CX from the top down, rather than one incremental piece at a time. Vantage CX has the makings of a platform and set of tools for a suite, rather than just a CDP.

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Keith Dawson

Topics: Customer Experience, Marketing, Analytics, Business Intelligence, Contact Center, Data, Digital Marketing, Digital Commerce, AI and Machine Learning, intelligent marketing

Keith Dawson

Written by Keith Dawson

Keith leads the expertise in Customer Experience (CX), covering applications and technology that facilitate engagement to optimize customer-facing processes. His focus areas include: agent management, contact center and voice of the customer and technology in marketing, sales, field service and applications such as digital commerce and subscription management. Keith’s specialization is in natural language and speech tools with intelligent virtual assistants, multichannel routing and journey management, and the wide array of customer analytics. He is focused on how businesses can break down technology and operational silos to provide more efficient processes for two-way engagement with customers. Keith has been an industry analyst for more than a decade and prior was the editorial director of Call Center Magazine. There he pioneered coverage of cloud-based contact centers, speech recognition and processing, and the shift from voice to multichannel communications. He is a graduate of Amherst College.