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Journey Orchestration

Orchestration of customer journeys has been the domain of marketing automation platforms for more than a decade. Now, however, the CDPs are entering the field of journey orchestration to challenge the email centric MA platforms. Are the CDPs ready to take over and is your business ready to go real-time and truly channel-agnostic with a CDP driven journey orchestration platform?

There can be many reasons for migrating out of a MA platform – performance of the platform, cost increases, new MA team with platform preferences and so on. But if you are considering a move towards a CDP-driven journey orchestration platform, your business needs to be ready to utilize the real-time channel-agnostic capabilities fueled by the CDP to fully unlock its commercial value.

A good exercise to evaluate your readiness is to articulate specific real-time use cases and estimate the performance uplift. First try to extend your current journeys. What if they were triggered in real-time? What if the messages were delivered across paid, web, app, email, POS etc.? What if the journeys also included unauthenticated web visitors? What if the business logic of the journey decisions were enriched with real-time predictions? 

The list of potential real-time and channel-agnostic capabilities can be long and alluring. The better your team is at articulating specific usage and accurate commercial outcome the more ready you are to move on.

Are the CDPs journey orchestration platforms capable to replace your MA platform?

MA platforms have been in market for more than a decade and most of the platforms have a common baseline of capabilities. Real-time CDPs with journey orchestration capabilities are in general newer to the market and you must carefully evaluate the platforms to make sure you can execute a robust and commercially attractive migration. 

Here are some of the differences to look for in a CDP journey orchestration solution:

1) Is the journey orchestration real-time? If your core use cases include real-time web and app personalization the full, round-trip of data-to-experience must be in real-time.

2) Can the journeys be triggered by a scheduled data query? Most legacy MA driven platforms use a scheduled query to validate new participants to a journey. Not all real-time CDPs have this capability.

3) Can the CDP cater for complex data structures? Most MA platforms have a relational data structure catering for complex data structures, whereas the nature of the CDP data structure is often flat with profile attributes in combination with event data. CDPs vary greatly in their ability to store more complex data structures, and some rely on vision of zero-copy architecture.

4) Last mile delivery of messages in CDP? The MA platform usually do last mile delivery and personalization of emails and app messages. To evaluate whether you should go with a CDP with or with out last mile delivery, you need to assess your content workflow and personalization requirements.