The framework of relationship marketing can be viewed in four primary components: knowing your customer, growing your customer base, communicating, and growing revenue, and building loyalty. But if you have multiple data silos that aren’t working together toward the same goal, it becomes difficult to achieve those four components and accomplish successful relationship marketing.

You have multiple complex systems and sources of data working all the time such as eCommerce, point-of-sale, ticketing, lodging and PMS, and more. Having that data available to you is valuable as a starting point, but without effective data enrichment through a customer data platform, you can’t use it in the most intuitive way. Data enrichment enables all your data to work harder together and gives you the insights you need to segment smarter.

What is data enrichment?

Simply put, data enrichment is a process that helps improve the accuracy and reliability of your data. By adding new and supplemental information to your database and verifying it against third-party sources, you ensure clean, accurate records and can fill missing gaps. There are several “buckets” of data enrichment that bring the full picture together, which are data input, growing and strengthening your data set, visibility and channels, and analytics and reporting.

Data input & growing your database

At the heart of understanding your customers is the data itself and ensuring it is the best quality it can be. This comes with understanding how to capture the right data, how to integrate your system data into one comprehensive dashboard, and how to collect data from various sources.

  • Data capture
    • Strong data capture is essential to get the best data possible that you can, in turn, use to segment your customers strategically. First and foremost, guest records must be contactable, meaning they include at least an email address and perhaps multiple forms of contact (i.e. phone number, billing address, etc.). If a contact in your system only gave their first and last name at the time of transaction, you cannot target that guest and you increase fallout when integrations bring in new data. If you struggle to collect contact info, start with your internal and on-site teams to work towards capturing customer data at the time of purchase.

  • Integrations 
    • Integrating all your systems into one platform allows you to more strategically target your messaging, build smarter segments, and create more robust customer profiles. For example, if you’re a hotel that has a spa on site, you can integrate that spa data to glean additional insights into your guests’ behaviors. Or if you’re a retailer and have a loyalty program or credit card program, you can use that information to understand who your high-value customers are. Many businesses focus on one or two data sources and the others fall to the wayside, but if you combine all your data sources, you won’t be trying to fit a bunch of missing puzzle pieces together.
  • Ad hoc data loads
    • Outside of regular data integration which updates on a consistent basis (usually daily), there are also ad hoc data loads. For instance, if you have an event on-site with booths and sign-up forms, special contests or sweepstakes, or clubs and VIP groups on site, you can upload that data into a CDP to supplement the information you already have. Then you have an easier way to get in contact with those customers, and you can build a sign-up form or landing page to get new people in that audience.

Visibility and channels

It’s important to find different ways to engage with people who are actively engaging with you, as well as meet them where they are. This includes using web tracking pixels to understand your customers’ behavior on your website, using a private IP, and developing landing page forms and/or preference centers to tailor your messaging to different groups and interests.

  • Web tracking pixels
    • These pixels can be implemented on your web pages to track the activity of where your customers are browsing. It’s simply a different way of finding and engaging with people who are browsing specific areas of your website to send them more targeted, conversion-driving messaging. One of the most popular messages that come from web tracking pixels is abandoned browse, which provides insight into what people are interested in outside of a direct purchase. From there you can send out messaging that prompts them to purchase again..
  • Private/dedicated IP
    • Private IPs are especially helpful for conglomerate companies, but can be beneficial to any resort or retailer. They allow you to have more control over your email deliverability and provide opportunities to improve it. If you are sending through a shared IP, you can sometimes be at the mercy of other people’s sending habits and reputation. A private IP is also good for troubleshooting, so you know it’s only your brand that needs investigating if there are any deliverability issues.
  • Landing page forms/preference centers
    • Through a landing page, sign-up form or preference center, you can collect emails and tailor information to different groups based on what they have expressed interest in or opted in to receiving. For example, if you are a ski resort, you may have a guest that only wants to receive snow reports on specific days. If you are a hotel or retailer, you might have a rewards program that people can sign up for and get updates periodically. These are a great tool to drive additional email sign ups without relying on direct purchases, and they can be as simple or elaborate as you want them to be.
  • Social platforms & additional channels
    • You can also use the data you compile in a customer data platform to export audiences into other platforms and explore different channel opportunities, such as social media, direct mail, and SMS. This also allows you to target people who might not be reachable via email. Many social platforms have “lookalike modelling” which means if you have an audience like a loyalty group, high spenders, or high visitors, you can push those people over to social platforms and use their capabilities to find people that resemble those high-impact audiences.

Analytics, reporting, and testing

If you want to start layering reporting into your marketing strategy, you can start by considering these questions:

  • What kind of metrics are you looking for? (Purchases, engagement, etc.)
  • In what cadence do you want the data? (Quarterly, monthly, or more consistent)
  • How are you planning to use the data?
  • In what format are you intending to use the data? (e.g., print or digital)

Reporting makes a world of difference in the effectiveness of a targeted, personalized marketing strategy. When you can see the numbers and the activity of your customers, you can adjust what’s not working or double-down on what is. Here are a couple of reporting strategy options:

  • Migration reports
    • These reports help you develop a structure that you can use year-over-year to understand how your customers and prospects are migrating through pre-defined categories or buckets.
  • Demographic reporting
    • This is a type of analysis that focuses solely on demographics. Perhaps you have a few different product offerings you’re most curious about such as luxury spa packages or specifically tiered products. This is a cost-efficient way to dig further into your segments and understand them better. Some of the most common demographic groups include household income, presence of children, age, and location.

Find what works for your business

The truth is that relationship marketing and data enrichment is not one-size-fits-all. Depending on your business and your unique needs, you may want to pick and choose some of these strategies listed and experiment with different combinations of methods. This is just a menu of sorts to determine if anything stands out for your business or could fill a void you’ve been looking solve for.


At Ascent360, our customer data platform provides you all these solutions and more. We help you easily aggregate your data, pull it into intuitive segments, and target your audiences based on these determining factors. If you’d like to learn more, reach out to us to receive a walkthrough of the platform today and see your own data in action!

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