B2C customer data platforms (CDPs): all the hype, none of the follow-through. That summarizes the analysis of the CDP space in our inaugural report on the category in 2018. We continue to field client inquiries about the CDP market — but the tone from marketers has grown increasingly skeptical, and vendors are asking less about their positioning and more about roadmaps and survival strategies in a crowded and noisy market.

B2C CDPs have reason to be concerned. The scene has gotten even more complicated as enterprise martech vendors have invited themselves to the CDP party. Adobe, Oracle, and Salesforce have all revealed plans for their own CDPs or, in Adobe’s case, launched a CDP product in the last year. While the presence of established marketing clouds has validated marketers’ continued difficulties with using data more effectively, CDPs will have to compete against technology vendors that enterprise marketers are, in most cases, already using today. So what will it take for CDPs to survive?

Our new report, “The Capabilities CDPs Need To Deliver Value For B2C Marketers,” examines the capabilities marketers require — whether delivered by a standalone CDP, marketing cloud vendor of choice, or a solution built in-house. A successful solution must bridge the gap between data aggregation and marketing execution. For CDPs to be worthwhile of B2C marketers’ attention — to provide solutions that legitimately advance marketers’ customer engagement strategies — they must mature on two axes: functional competency and automation and intelligence. Once CDPs can execute omnichannel orchestration and build an intelligence layer, they may just evolve from surviving to thriving.

Feel free to set up an inquiry if you have questions about the B2C CDP space.