Salesforce Gets Serious About CDPs With Revamped Customer 360 Product

Marty Kihn

Marty Kihn

June 18, 2019 - James Hercher of AdExchanger writes: Salesforce officially threw its hat into the ring with the launch of a customer data platform (CDP) on Tuesday at its Connections conference in Chicago.

Salesforce has been circling a CDP launch for the past year, since its $800 million acquisition of Datorama, a data integration service, and the launch of an internal identity graph called Customer 360 shortly thereafter. That identity graph will now become the core of the CDP product, which is inheriting the name Customer 360.

Salesforce, along with practically every company in the mar tech ecosystem, has grappled with the definition of a CDP.

“Frankly, I think that’s mostly marketing. We have all the pieces of a CDP, but really, what is that?” Salesforce Marketing Cloud CEO Bob Stutz told AdExchanger a year ago.

At the time, he predicted CDPs would be a “passing fad” as identity graphs, tag management companies, CRMs and DMPs evolve into mobile, customer-based data solutions.

Whether it’s marketing jargon or not, the CDP moniker has stuck, and players across the industry are staking their claim in the nebulous category.

“We’re embracing the CDP as a natural evolution of the CRM,” said Marty Kihn [pictured], Salesforce Marketing Cloud’s SVP of product strategy, who, as Gartner research VP last year, was one of the first to try to define the CDP category.

“We have a strong claim to this space,” Kihn said. One reason Salesforce embraced the new three-letter acronym is that in surveys over the past year, clients often named Salesforce as their CDP vendor, he said. More...