What is identity resolution?

  • Posted: 1st May 2019

Definition: Identity resolution is a data management process, usually undertaken by software, which involves searching, analysing and matching up disparate data sets to create (or ‘resolve’) accurate and cohesive data identities for individual customers. It is the basis for the coveted Single Customer View (SCV) database that enterprise marketing teams strive to build.

Why is identity resolution important for marketers?

Collecting customer data to inform marketing strategies has always been important, but as marketing technologies have evolved, so too has the quantity and sophistication of data that needs to be managed. Now, companies use a huge range of first party information, including demographic, behavioural, financial, lifestyle and purchase data, to create customer profiles, as well as supplementary information from second and third party sources.

This is where identity resolution comes in. By matching up data sets, marketing teams are able to work with a fuller view of the customer, and communications can then be hyper-personalised to meet the needs of that specific identity.

Any business that wants to implement a truly customer-centric marketing strategy needs to implement proper identity resolution. If you can’t match up disparate data sets on behaviour across a number of channels, then you can never build a truly comprehensive view of your customer.

In summary, the main benefits of identity resolution include:

  • Unearthing hidden opportunities: Using identity resolution to build more completely customer profiles tends to highlight the ‘blind spots’ where the company could be cross-selling or upselling other offers, products and services.
  • Building better customer relationships: If you can give customers what they want when they want it, you can build more trusting and loyal customer relationships, which in itself is essential for retention and repeat purchases.
  • Creating a single customer view (SCV): An SCV is crucial to improving personalised customer communications, enabling teams to achieve a better ROI on their marketing technology, informing a smarter CRM strategy, and ultimately increasing sales over the longer term.

Identity resolution can play a role in every part of the business if done properly. The key is finding the tools that can help you do it properly.

Identity resolution in action

Standard data analytics platforms often identify one user using different devices as separate users. For example, one user could visit the brand’s website on their computer and then later on their mobile phone, which many platforms would count as two visits from two different people. This type of data distorts overall marketing analytics and leave teams with misleading numbers.

A more advanced Customer Data Platform (CDP) can help with this. For example, Tealium AudienceStream’s patented visitor stitching technology recognises when one person is using multiple devices. It recognises multiple identifiers belonging to the same person and then maps them to multi-device use in real time.

From the moment a user interacts with the brand, Tealium AudienceStream creates a customer profile. As more ID data is added and more matches are made across profiles, the visitor stitching technology kicks in. Matching data across profiles is ‘stitched’ together in real time to create a complete view of a customer’s engagement across all devices. This creates a totally customer-centric approach.

Want to learn more?

Celerity is a certified Tealium solution partner, and we can help you build any of the Tealium Universal Data Hub products into your martech stack to support better data management in your business. Whether you’re looking for implementation and integration, support, product training, or ongoing marketing technology consultancy, our team can help you get on the right track.

To find out more about Tealium and to discuss your customer data challenges with one of our certified experts, get in contact today.

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