How to sidestep the analysis paralysis zone when implementing your CDP

Do you want to implement a CDP but keep getting stuck at step one? You are not alone. Many people start down on the path of CDP implementation and get stuck in the “analysis paralysis zone” where they are simultaneously excited about all the things they can do with a CDP and overwhelmed by potential options and ways to get there.

We find a lot of organizations waste endless cycles on discovery, when the easiest way to get started is just to get started. I recommend starting with a pilot for many reasons—here are the top three:

1. You quickly get your software into productive use
2. You create proof points on the positive impact of a CDP that you can use to create buy-in for future rollouts
3. You learn a lot that can be leveraged in future implementations

I’m sold on a pilot. Where do I start? 

To identify the use cases you want to pilot, a good choice is the classic value to effort grid. To help chart out the value axis, sit your senior stakeholders down and ask them to identify the top priorities for them right now.

Or, you can provide them a list of common objectives and ask them to stack rank. Revenue, operational efficiency, customer acquisition, customer retention and customer satisfaction are generally objectives that most stakeholders are driving to, but which lands at the top of the list can vary from quarter to quarter and year to year.

Once you understand the values that matter, you can assess your use cases and stack-rank them based on how many of the organizational objectives they help achieve.

To assess level of effort for your pilot, it’s all about data.

Find a data savvy person in your organization and start looking at the data your use cases require. It might be contact data, behavior data, loyalty data, purchase history customer service interactions and preference data that you are capturing in your preference center or their engagement with your website or emails. The more complete and correct your data is, the lower it will fall on the effort access, and the more complex or harder to access data will land on high effort side of the axis.

The results of this exercise will look something like this, with some clear low hanging fruit. This low hanging fruit will be the use cases you will want to use for your pilot.


Creating a roadmap for scale

As part of this exercise, you may find some really high value use cases that are just too challenging to implement for a pilot. That’s OK! That’s why we pilot. As a parallel path to your pilot you work toward the process and policy changes you might need to make within your organization to get the data in a place where it can be usable by your CDP.

The great thing about CDP data as opposed to some other data initiatives is that the data is best when it is fresh and representing your client today versus your client five years ago. For many use cases, this eliminates the need to clean up large swaths of historical data. You can fix the problem now, or start tracking a key piece of information and the data will be ready to go by the time you are ready to put it in your CDP.

A useful byproduct of the prioritization exercise is often a road map where you can see how you bring each part of your organization into the CDP, and how you can start run parallel paths of process and data changes to get ready for implementation. See below for a sample road map.

One big reminder when it comes to creating road maps: remember that a key foundation for our road map was organizational priorities, and as we know these can change! It’s important to reevaluate your road map quarterly to make sure that you’re still on track to deliver use cases that will have the most bang for the buck for your organization



Digital, Other, Salesforce