With an ocean of data available online, there have never been more ways to know your customer better. But it can be tricky for marketers to figure out where to start. One great way we have found to cut through the noise is profile enrichment.
Knowing your customers is the key to hitting your business goals. Armed with accurate information about who you are talking to, you can segment your customer base and quickly develop strategies to keep them happy – or check they are who they claim to be. Profile enrichment is all about using scalable tools to give you the information you need without having to trawl through thousands of records.
Will your customers notice the difference? Absolutely. For marketers, customer engagement and brand loyalty rocket when people feel they are being treated as an individual. People are tired of filling out forms and feel reluctant to share data, even though it is already available publicly. For compliance specialists, fraud prevention is made easier by reliably differentiating between people, hackers and bots.
How does profile enrichment work?
Profile enrichment is a three stage process.
1. Build your database
If you are starting from scratch, you need to get your database into shape. This is the critical stage of profile enrichment, because restructuring your database later is a bad idea and can be expensive. The right data structure now will pay huge dividends in future.
Your current customer profiles will need to interface seamlessly with other business systems, so that your colleagues can access the right information at the right time. There’s a ton of back end technical work which your data processor will do for you, like ensuring your customer profiles are secure.
Maybe your data is currently on spreadsheets. If so, you need to act fast as you are not compliant with the GDPR and data security issues are a high risk.
The integration will boost your customer profiling by combining your data with independent verification and insights. In practical terms, it will be impossible for you to do this yourself if you have more than a few hundred records in your database. There is no upper limit to the number of profiles that can be enriched.
Identity resolution involves using a single piece of information, like an email address, to analyse billions of pieces of public data on an individual.
Applying the insights you gather from profile enrichment will vary according to your business objectives. If your budget allows it, it makes sense to automate repeated processes. For example, you will need to update the third party data from customers’ public records. You probably won’t want to do that manually.
The application you use must have a user-friendly interface. For great business results, there’s no point in making it accessible to just a few highly-skilled colleagues.
What does success look like?
A great profile enrichment process will enable you to build better relationships at scale, and see customer satisfaction grow. The process is invisible to customers, who benefit from a service that is more tailored to what they want. It also helps protect them because you have more effective fraud prevention in place.
Your colleagues won’t see much of the process either, but they will have access to timely, accurate and relevant information to help them do their jobs way better. They will log in to the database and view the data that matches their authority level.
Is profile enrichment the right thing to do?
Absolutely yes – as long as you use the data lawfully. This is not spying, hacking or scraping. All the data gathered in profile enrichment is public and the process of gathering it is perfectly legal. Profile enrichment is in the customer’s interest because they benefit in multiple ways.