In today’s growingly digital world, where internet marketing has become the go-to choice for most businesses, audience data collection and management are becoming essential to building a brand.
Unfortunately, managing customer data at scale is challenging and expensive. Most businesses are already aware of that. That is why many are turning toward various data management services that offer a cost-effective way to streamline the entire process!
According to a survey by Infogroup, 62% of marketers are already investing in data management solutions, while 26% believe they will do the same within the next few years.
So who do these brands and agencies turn to for these services? The answer is simple — data management platforms!
But what role do data management platforms play in digital marketing, what are they, and why should you use them? These are just some of the questions we’re going to answer in this article.
Now let’s jump right in and learn everything there is to know about data management platforms!
A data management platform (DMP) is a platform that stores and manages first-, second-, and third-party customer information collected from various online and offline sources. In other words, DMPs help brands segment and organize raw data to make it more presentable and dissectable. Without them, assessing collected audience data and adjusting your campaigns on the fly would be near impossible!
Aside from the above, data management platforms play an essential role in online advertising since they offer invaluable targeting data like:
Since DMPs store and organize all this data, they’re an invaluable part of the programmatic advertising ecosystem.
Data management platforms’ role is to share all collected information with supply-side platforms, demand-side platforms, and ad exchanges, who use the data to help advertisers serve their ads only to the most relevant consumers. These highly personalized ads lead to a better user experience and ensure marketers can spend their advertising budgets more optimally.
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Data management platforms collect audience data from various sources, including but not limited to the following:
After collecting that information, DMPs group users with matching or similar data into multiple audience segments that they later optimize using lookalike audiences. This term refers to potential customers whose characteristics match your brand’s ideal customers.
Data management platforms unify this information and continually collect and update audience segments with new data, allowing marketers to tweak their campaigns in real time to achieve the best ROI.
With everything we’ve said so far, it should be clear how DMPs operate and their primary purpose. However, let’s do a quick recap. Here are the primary functions of data management platforms:
As integral as DMPs are to online advertisers nowadays, they have their limitations that are worth mentioning. Although DMPs do similar things as other pieces of marketing tech, there are two critical differences.
Regardless of their dependency on third-party platforms to generate revenue, DMPs are an integral tool for all brands looking to optimize their customers’ buyer journey and scale their business through online advertising.
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Few advertisers can picture an advertising campaign without using a DMP nowadays, and for a good reason! Why? Because there are too many benefits to using a data management platform to ignore. Here are some of the most notable ones:
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Anyone looking to scale their business through online advertising can benefit from a DMP. That means nearly all professionals from the IT to video content marketing industries can use data management platforms to come to more informed decisions regarding their marketing campaigns.
However, the three parties who benefit from DMPs the most are publishers, marketers, and ad agencies.
Media owners and publishers are people with large websites they wish to monetize. They can use data management platforms to gather their visitors’ data and run targeted ad campaigns on their sites. By leveraging that first-party data, they can sell their ad inventory at premium prices and achieve higher CPM through methods like programmatic direct. Direct sold inventory always goes for higher prices than using other traditional programmatic methods like real-time bidding.
Marketers and ad agencies use data management platforms daily to identify and group audiences to suit their digital campaigns. Whether they’re looking to improve their ad targeting capabilities or get a deeper understanding of their audiences, marketers and agencies can turn to DMPs.
Now that you’re aware of just how valuable DMPs can be, we’ve prepared a list of five data management platforms you can use to boost your advertising efforts. These providers are some of the best in the industry, so you can rest assured you’ll get a high-quality service whichever you pick.
Nielsen Data Management Platform is a well-established name in the industry; it is currently one of the go-to analytics software companies for marketers worldwide. This platform is a fantastic tool for collecting, assessing, and managing audience data. Nielsen prides itself on its extensive audience segments, reach, and analytical capabilities. That makes this platform an excellent choice for publishers and agencies looking to take their audience insights to the next level.
Mapp Data Management Platform is a solution used by thousands of marketers worldwide who need to keep all of their customer data at hand. Aside from its user-friendly CMS and advanced real-time analytics, Mapp’s software allows users to seamlessly distribute their data across various marketing platforms.
However, one downside of this DMP is that it isn’t particularly suitable for large teams due to its lack of multi-user capabilities. But if that single setback doesn’t prove too troublesome for you, you can rest assured Mapp is a data management platform that will not disappoint.
We’d be hard-pressed to find a marketer who hasn’t heard of the Salesforce CRM software. But did you know that the company also has a dedicated data management platform?
Salesforce DMP is an excellent tool for businesses looking to compile customer data across multiple channels and reach their ideal customers. Salesforce’s data management platform is powered by advanced AI and machine learning technology, making it one of the best choices for brands looking to optimize their targeting. Coupled with Salesforce’s multi-channel support, these features make it a worthy DMP for small and large businesses alike.
Lotame is another industry giant in the DMP software department, and for a good reason. This data management platform helps businesses collect, sort, and analyze customer information from various channels, including mobile apps, social media, blogs, email, and CRM tools. Besides its wide range of supported channels, Lotame offers access to multiple audience optimization tools. That is why this DMP is particularly useful to ad agencies and marketers.
The only major downside of this DMP is its lack of live reporting features, which might be a dealbreaker for some. But if this drawback doesn’t bother you, we’re positive you’re going to love Lotame.
OnAudience is a data management platform most popular among advertisers due to its massive number of audience profiles. Aside from allowing marketers to narrow down their existing audiences with dozens of filters, this DMP also helps them find new customers in just a few clicks. OnAudience’s data-sharing features make it easy to share your audience info with your clients, making it an excellent choice for agencies working on multiple projects at a time.
All marketers nowadays are aware of the importance of building lasting relationships with their audiences. However, understanding their customers is one of the biggest challenges they’re still facing to date. With data management platforms, these struggles will become a thing of the past!
DMPs can help brands better understand their users and enable them to deliver their ads to the right people at the right time. That is why they’re an invaluable part of any advertiser’s arsenal and an integral part of the programmatic ecosystem.
If you aren’t already using a data management platform to scale your advertising efforts, you’re leaving money on the table! So what are you waiting for? Any of the five choices we mentioned above should be a great place to start.
Best of luck to you!