Retrospective Personalisation

Persona Cluedo: Unmasking the invisible man

It’s never been more important for businesses to be able to deliver meaningful, personalised experiences to their customers. Major developments in digital and connected engagements have reshaped the expectations of customers, who now demand you give them personalised experiences that meet their needs as standard – as we discussed in another of our blogs.

Traditionally, these personalised experiences have relied on third-party cookies, but, like all cookies, these are beginning to go stale. This has been driven by action from technology vendors like Apple and Mozilla, who have implemented features that restrict the ability for third-party cookies to track users, as well as major regulatory changes which intend to produce the same result. This trend is only set to continue as Google Chrome drops support for third-party cookies in 2024.

In order to meet the demand for personalisation without relying on third-party cookies, organisations need to adopt a new approach to understand their customers – effective use of first-party data.

The challenge of first-party data

So, what does effective use of first-party data look like? In order to understand that, it’ll be useful to lay out how first-party data usually works within most organisations. Your first-party data is that which you’ve gathered yourself, everything from transaction histories, to support tickets raised, to the pages being viewed on your website

While most businesses have access to that data, the challenge is being able to harness it in a way which helps the business. Often, different pieces of data are collected by different tools, and stored in their own dedicated siloes. Since most interactions customers have with brands are anonymous, you can never be certain who you’re talking to – your customers essentially become the invisible man.

This leaves you in the dark as to who your customers are, and what their journey looks like – if a single user interacts with you over three separate channels, there’s a good chance they might appear to you as three separate users, just with a common interest.  Connecting this data together is the key to identifying who a potential customer really is and surfacing a level of insight into their preferences which is critical to enhancing their journey and outcomes that matter to your business.

See your customers, not just their actions

Chances are you’re already familiar with the mechanics of the board game Cluedo (or Clue, for readers in America) – players have to piece together a crime by combining fragmentary pieces of evidence. In the same way, effective use of first-party data relies on you being able to piece together a complete image of your consumers by combining the information you have about them and their journey – it’s more about who is it, rather than who done it, in this case.

This works through the innovative use of Segment – a part of the Twilio platform. Segment keeps track of visitors until they tell you who they are – whether they’re creating an account on your site, requesting a brochure, or placing an order. Once they’ve taken that first step, Segment can review your first-party data – from all available channels – to deduce who that user is and create a full picture of where they are in their customer journey, and what they’re likely to be looking for.

The next step is taking that information to deliver a more personalised customer experience, which can meet a customer’s need without them needing to explicitly tell you. To give an example, let’s imagine you run a car dealership. These businesses are exposed to a lot of first-party data from prospective customers – the vehicles they’re interested in, whether they’re looking at financing options, or if they’re taking more concrete steps towards a purchase – booking in a test drive, for example.

By feeding this information into Segment, it can all be linked together, and you can recognise a particular customer when they interact with you through another channel. Let’s say a customer has been looking at a product page for a particular car for an extended period, and then reaches out to a contact centre agent through a web chat. The use of Segment means that the agent who responds can see what page the customer is looking at, and cross-reference that with other information that might be known about the customer – maybe they recently looked at the different financing options available from the business, so it stands to reason that they’re likely considering a purchase of the car they’re looking at.

Importantly, the agent is only given the information that’s relevant to a particular step in the customer journey – if a customer wants to talk to you about financing a new car, then there’s probably little value in knowing that the same customer was looking at the page for a different vehicle 6 months ago. The intelligent systems which drive Segment understand this and help to make sure that agents aren’t overloaded with irrelevant information that won’t actually help you deliver a great customer experience.

This is the magic of an integrated customer engagement platform – a visitor who would have previously been the invisible man is now a fully realised portrait of a customer, and you can use this information to deliver a personalised experience and guide them along their journey.

Ready to get started?

When we talk to our customers about personalising the customer experience, there’s one comment that always comes up – it’s a great idea, but the technology isn’t quite there yet. But, in truth, it’s never been easier to get access to these powerful tools and genuinely join up a customer journey in the ways we have described.

Twilio is the world’s most customisable customer engagement platform, and Segment’s ability to surface and make effective use of first-party data across multiple channels is a core part of that. As a Twilio Gold Partner, Ciptex is well-positioned to help you set up the platform and drive personalised experiences using Segment – and with our RACE innovations, you can deploy an effective solution, tailored to the needs of your business, at lightning speed.

With our help, you can get on the case and unmask the invisible man.

Want to know more? Get in touch with us today.