Chen Cuello
MAY 3, 2023
5 min read
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 In today’s digital world, organizations are drowning in large amounts of data.

They rely on the modern data stack to manage and handle their data. That stack usually consists of four key components: Data Acquisition (where data is generated), Data Integration (consolidating data into a single view), Data Transformation (cleaning and preparing data for analysis), and Analytics (analyzing and using data to gain insights).

Consolidating data from all sources into a centralized platform, usually a data warehouse is the end game. But it’s not enough. If data is stored in the data warehouse, only technical users have access to it. And if data on a dashboard and reports aren’t accessible to the users that need it most, what good is that data?

How can you overcome these silos? With Data activation – the last and final piece of the modern data stack.

Data activation is the process of putting data to operational use. It requires collecting and analyzing customer data, making it easily accessible to every user that needs to act on it in real-time or near real-time.

In this article, we’ll cover the ins and outs of data activation, and how you can make data actionable and accessible to users who need it most.

Let’s dive in!

What is a Data Activation Platform?

A data activation platform is designed to help businesses enrich their data and make it accessible to every department and user it relies on. Essentially, it’s all about taking the data that’s stored in your cloud data warehouse and syncing it back into the tech stack and systems that your organization uses every day.

This means your CRM will be enriched with complete data, which makes your work more efficient. Additionally, you can use the insights that you gain from your data to trigger alerts in Slack or other messaging platforms, so that your teams can respond quickly and make better decisions.

Not only that, but a data activation platform allows you to control any service API so that you can ensure your data is of the highest quality possible and that every user has access to the data they need to generate value and make better decisions. Considering that the data is decentralized, every user can act upon it at the right time.

Data Activation Benefits

Often overlooked, data activation is here to unlock your business’s full potential. From helping you reduce costs, increase speed and transparency, and improve efficiency, let’s take a look at the other benefits data activation has for your business.

Enhance Your Understanding of Users

With the growth of data generated from social media, web analytics, and operational systems, businesses must activate their data to extract valuable insights.

By doing so, companies can enhance their understanding of customer behavior, market trends, and operational performance. Real-time access to data helps businesses become more agile and responsive to changing market conditions and customer needs.

This can also help you predict and compare customers’ behavior of particular groups and people, which might include:

  • Leads that went cold

  • Prospects who showed interest in your product or service but you’ve never contacted

  • Prospects that fit the profile of high-value customers

Based on this insight, you can acquire high-value customers, boost sales, as well as build and maintain customer loyalty.

Enhance Targeting and Personalization of Content

Nowadays, customers are most likely to turn to a company that offers personalized user experience. In fact, around 88% of online shoppers won’t return to a website after a bad user experience.

Data activation is here to help you extract valuable insight about customers and put it into action. This means you’ll finally target the right audience by using relevant information about their preferences and offering them a tailored experience.

Data activation can also contribute to both personalization and non-personalization experiences. Personalization with data activation involves the process of using data to create customized marketing messages tailored to individual preferences and behavior.

On the other hand, non-personalization with data activation refers to using gathered data to deliver a general message to all consumers, by targeting different segments of consumers based on demographics or behavior. If you’re struggling to decide between personalization and non-personalization, find yourself a platform that can do both such as Adobe Target.

Take Action on Customer Insights in Real Time

Accessing customer insights in real-time with the help of data activation is reshaping the way businesses make decisions. It’s no wonder, as it’s a much more effective method than traditional manual analysis and report-making. By collecting and analyzing data from various sources, data activation helps you gather insight and develop marketing and sales strategies.

Additionally, you can act upon customer insights in real-time, so you can quickly respond to customer behavior and preferences and deliver relevant and personalized experiences. For example, you can implement a cart abandonment notification strategy in real-time to reduce cart abandonment rates and drive sales.

How Reverse ETL Enables Data Activation

TB Before going into details about how to reverse ETL and data activation are connected, we must answer an important question – what is reverse ETL?

Reverse ETL is the process of syncing data from your data lake or data warehouse back into your operational systems, such as your CRM. This ensures that the insights generated by your data analysis work are put into action more effectively.

The key benefit of reverse ETL is that it allows you to take the insights that you generate through data analysis and turn them into action. This can help you create a more personalized experience for your customers, improve customer retention and increase revenue.

Overall, reverse ETL is valuable for any organization that wants to get more value from their data analysis work. By doing so, you can expect better business decisions, as well as better business outcomes.

Let’s take a look at how reverse ETL enables data activation.

  • Operational analytics Reverse ETL refers to the process of acquiring information that data teams need and integrating it into their workflows. It’s an amazing cost and time-saving method for making better business decisions with real-time data.

  • Data automation Managing data used to require a lot of manual work, but with reverse ETL, this is a thing of the past. For example, customer data about past purchases can be accessed and categorized within minutes.

  • Customer personalization – As generic messages are not appreciated anymore, reversed ETL is the best way to enhance customer experience. It allows data engineers to pull information about customers’ needs and wants and insert it into the targeted database.

Optimize the Work of Different Departments

The use of data activation isn’t limited to one department only. Instead, its benefits extend to optimizing the work of different departments.

Marketing Team

Data activation eliminates the need for data engineers and allows marketers to build sophisticated audiences by tracing customers’ digital footprints. This includes the user’s personal information, their behavior towards your brand, and what brought them to your website in the first place.

Customer Success Team

The customer success team’s job will also be much easier as they can gain real-time insight into usage trends. For example, if a customer is likely to back down, they’ll have automated alerts and can address the issue immediately.

Sales Team

Boosting sales is what every business aims for, so optimizing the work for the sales team is very important. With the help of data activation, they’ll have access to relevant information, which can work in favor of account managers to improve the conversation with customers.

Data Team

Data engineers won’t have to worry about building integrations and connectors anymore, while data specialists will improve their time effectiveness and hopefully motivate other teams to do the same.

Stages in Data Activation

To get into the depth of the data activation framework, let’s take a look at the four different data activation stages.

Data Collection

You’ve gathered an immense amount of data, but it’s scattered all over the place, and you’re wondering how to make sense of it?

Data activation is here to put an end to your struggles. Data collection is the process of combining all your datasets collected from different sources. It enables you to combine all kinds of data from website and mobile apps, marketing tools, POS and CRM systems, as well as ad platforms. Not only that, but all of this information helps enable the data enrichment process.

Once this data is collected and combined, you can use data activation to sync data to a C CDP platform (a platform that combines data from various sources to create a unified customer database), such as the Salesforce Customer 360, allowing you to continuously collect relevant information and expand the customers’ profiles.

Data Analysis

To get the most out of customer data, it has to be properly analyzed. Data analysis, also referred to as customer analysis, helps you gain insight into customers’ behavior. You now have the option to use analytics tools instead of manually analyzing data, which requires a lot of time and work and is prone to human error.

Businesses are slowly learning to use data analysis to their advantage. For example, with its help, they can make better decisions regarding product or service developments, marketing, sales, etc.

Data analysis includes gathering information about past purchases of customers, personal information such as name, age, address, and annual income, as well as public opinions about your brand. All of this leads to a better understanding of your target audience, so you can create tailored ads and marketing campaigns to enhance the customer experience.

Data Activation

When all customer data is collected and analyzed, it means it’s fully operational, so you can finally proceed with putting it into action to make better business decisions on behalf of your business or organization.

Your goal is to attract high-value customers, so this is what you’re working towards. When you’re aware of your goals, you can work smarter in order to achieve them. The third stage of data activation includes preparing your business strategy, creating engaging content for your website, and mobile app, as well as ad and marketing campaigns.

Data Measurement

Last but not least, data measurement is the process of quantifying the success of your decisions. Doing so lets you understand how well they performed and if they’re helping you reach your goal.

First and foremost, if your strategy is performing well enough, it means your efforts have finally paid off, and you’re bringing your product or service to the next level. If your strategy isn’t showing the desired results, data measurement will provide insights about where you can improve your performance or make necessary changes in the strategy.

Data Activation: Final Thoughts

Many businesses are still unaware of how their business can benefit from advanced technology, and data activation is the perfect example of such an overlooked modern strategy.

The improved decision-making process, increased sales, and enhanced user experience are at the tip of your fingers. Now that we’ve established how important data activation is for your business growth, there’s nothing stopping you from implementing it.

Data Activation FAQ

What’s the difference between data and activation data?

Data is all the insight you have on customers’ behavior, while data activation is the process of giving value to it and putting it into action to make better business decisions in real-time.

How do cross-functional teams benefit from data activation?

Data activation gives cross-functional teams access to relevant data warehouse insights and helps to provide a more coherent view of customers across the board. This helps improve efficiency as data can be acted on faster. For example, sales teams can target more prospects better when enriched cloud data warehouse data is pushed back to Salesforce to provide a complete 360-degree and accurate view of prospect accounts.

How to implement data activation framework

You have to first select your preferred data warehouse source, then specify the target destination. The next step is collecting the data you wish to sync and then mapping the warehouse fields with the target ones.

What to look for in a data activation platform?

When it comes to considering a data activation platform, there are several factors to take into account, like flexibility, unlimited destinations and security. If you can push data from your data warehouse to any data source you need, the resources and vendors your organization relies on will be dramatically reduced.

The difference between data analytics and data activation

Data analytics refers to analyzing collected data. Data activation, on the other hand, means using this data in real-time to drive automated actions.

How can Rivery help companies activate their data?

As a data integration platform, Rivery can help companies activate their data with reverse ELT, automating the entire data pipeline process, however complex. The flexible platform supports more than 200 data sources and thanks to its REST API, data from the cloud data warehouse can be pushed back to an unlimited number of destinations, complying with the highest security standards in the industry.

Rivery’s advanced transformation capabilities, lets engineers and technical users run SQL or Python code/scripts to transform non relational and unstructured data at scale and speed. This is a huge benefit, as it helps answer even the most complex data challenges and use cases from one platform for data ingestion, transformation, orchestration, and activation.

Minimize the firefighting.
Maximize ROI on pipelines.

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