Oracle launches a ‘CDP-plus’ for its clouds

by Oct 23, 20180 comments

Marketers using Oracle will now be able to get a more unified view of their customers, with the launch of what an Oracle executive calls “the next generation of customer data platforms.”

Oracle Marketing Cloud VP Shashi Seth described the new CX Unity this way and as a “CDP-plus,” because it offers a unified data profile for B2B and B2C across Oracle’s Experience Cloud — including Commerce, Loyalty, Service, Marketing, and Sales — and also provides intelligence to guide actions based on that data.

Why Oracle calls it CDP-plus. For instance, he told me, CX Unity can help marketers better understand their most loyal customers, how they’ve engaged across brand touchpoints, what kind of offers might interest them and, on the B2B side, which individuals can renew a contract. Previously, that kind of data was stored in multiple locations at Oracle.

In this way, he claimed, CX Unity is more advanced than most CDPs, some of which are focused primarily on centralized data storage. Previously, each Oracle Cloud had its own customer profile, and this is the first unifying mechanism.

Like other CDPs, CX Unity can handle unstructured and structured data from any sources, including offline sources, Salesforce CRM, non-Oracle applications or third-party data, and it can support real-time orchestration of customer experience across multiple channels.

Unifying around customer data. In September, Salesforce launched Customer 360, which also provides a unified set of customer B2C profiles that reaches across the profiles maintained by each cloud. However, Salesforce insisted to me that 360 is not a CDP, but a way to bring customer data together into a single virtual profile.

CX Unity is Oracle’s latest effort to unify the data and tools around its customer data. Earlier this year, it launched Infinity to bring together behavioral data from known and unknown users, and CX Audience to provide deep audience segmentation.

New Subscription Management, Data Cloud B2B tools. Also on Monday, Oracle is unveiling a new Subscription Management platform to provide for the first time its support for this kind of recurring revenue.

The platform offers subscription tools and data for renewal specialists, customer service agents, sales reps and customers. Some typical use cases, Seth said, might be a three-year contract that bills automatically but changes the bill each time to reflect the subscription usage, or tracking the revenue from the use of a truck billed on usage.

Additionally, Oracle Data Cloud is also unveiling on Monday new solutions for B2B marketing and selling to small-to-medium-sized businesses.

The new tools allow marketing to create audiences segmented for SMBs, pitches based on the number of employees in a business, financial risk profiles of these smaller companies, growth pattern models, SMB-specific methods for accepting payments, and so on.

How this impacts marketers. This CX Unity announcement is the latest indicator that unified profiles are becoming a standard part of marketing infrastructure, instead of a nice-to-have.

With Salesforce and Oracle unifying their customer data profiles across clouds, marketers should be able to better coordinate their marketing if they are dealing with multiple tools on those platforms. And, with Oracle promoting the intelligence it is applying to these unified profiles, the company is stepping up the competition among marketing clouds in this arena.

While subscription sales are booming and marketers welcome such ongoing customers, managing the subscriptions, selling new ones and projecting the growth are complicated by the fact that specific tools have often been lacking. The new Subscription Management platform brings that growing mechanism for recurring revenue into the fold of standardized tools for Oracle.

This story first appeared on MarTech Today. For more on marketing technology, click here.

About The Author

Barry Levine covers marketing technology for Third Door Media. Previously, he covered this space as a Senior Writer for VentureBeat, and he has written about these and other tech subjects for such publications as CMSWire and NewsFactor. He founded and led the web site/unit at PBS station Thirteen/WNET; worked as an online Senior Producer/writer for Viacom; created a successful interactive game, PLAY IT BY EAR: The First CD Game; founded and led an independent film showcase, CENTER SCREEN, based at Harvard and M.I.T.; and served over five years as a consultant to the M.I.T. Media Lab. You can find him at LinkedIn, and on Twitter at xBarryLevine.

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