Customer Data Management vs. Business Intelligence: Why These Should Not be Siloed

Customer Data Management vs. Business Intelligence: Why These Should Not be Siloed

What’s the difference between Customer Data Management (CDM) vs. business intelligence platforms? Which platform provides the most actionable customer data insights?

The answers to both questions, of course, depend on what you are trying to achieve. Let’s take a closer look at the two types of platforms. 

Customer Data Management vs. Business Intelligence: CDM Facts

Customer data management (CDM) refers to the collective actions businesses take to collect, manage, and analyze data from a variety of sources to produce unified customer profiles. These actions include data acquisition, storage, organization, and use.

The goal of CDM is to turn customer data into detailed profiles that sales, marketing, and service departments can use to improve the bottom line. CDM tools help organizations better understand their customers’ needs to communicate with them in a way that keeps them engaged.

Knowing the best ways to relate to your customers is easier when you gather, store, manage, and understand their data. CDM best practices also include data privacy and data protection. Here are some of the pros and cons of CDM:


  • Better understand customer requirements and improve interactions
  • Increase opportunities to upsell
  • Ensure compliance with data privacy and protection laws
  • Improve business decision-making processes
  • Provide opportunities for business expansion 


  • Can be challenging to use and visualize unstructured data

Business Intelligence Facts

Business intelligence, or BI, is a process that uses people and technology to collect and analyze data, and then turns that data into actionable insights that inform a company’s overall strategy and daily practices. With BI tools, users can access and analyze data sets and view their findings in reports, summaries, dashboards, graphs, and charts.

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In addition, BI includes tools that provide quick, easy-to-digest information about a company’s current state based on available data. A BI tool can handle large amounts of structured and unstructured data to help create, identify, and develop new strategic business opportunities. Below are some pros and cons for BI tools:


  • Break down big data and access data analytics
  • Easily create data reports–for users with a range of experience 
  • Explore new lines of product development
  • Analyze prospective and existing customer data
  • View customer retention metrics
  • Consolidate first-party data across the ecosystem into one location


  • Doesn’t unify data sources or offer a single-customer view
  • Takes time and resources to sort through data to provide valuable insights
The good news is that you don’t have to rely on one or the other.

Customer Data Platforms: Bringing It All Together

Customer data platforms (CDPs) have the capacity to integrate a variety of platforms and bring siloed data tools together in one place. A CDP’s essential features include ingesting data from many sources, storing it in a central repository, and compiling and maintaining robust customer profiles.

With a CDP, you can build customer profiles, manage customer interactions, and get data to analytics and engagement tools faster.

A CDP builds on a customer profile and adds segmentation to allow information to get to engagement endpoints. With a CDP, you can orchestrate multiple interactions and channels via one tool, eliminating fragmented and inconsistent targeting practices.

Customers today expect granular, real-time, cross-channel data access that is dynamic and instantaneous. CDPs provide quick, streamlined access to a wide range of analytics and engagement endpoints for triggered or campaign-based interactions.

The buzz around CDPs has only gotten louder, as increasing numbers of marketing, sales, and service professionals recognize the value of data in a volatile market. However, the CDP category is highly fragmented and still developing. Vendors and buyers often don’t agree on CDP definitions, so it’s often left to front-line personnel to define their requirements.

This is where Treasure Data can help. Our CDP platform balances privacy and data to deliver great customer experiences in marketing, service, and sales.

In fact, IDC recently named Treasure Data a leader in its MarketScape: Worldwide Customer Data Platforms Focused on Data and Marketing Operations Users 2022 Vendor Assessment. Per IDC’s recommendation: “Consider Treasure Data if one of the top challenges you are trying to solve is managing large volumes of customer data, establishing a complete view of the customer, or improving customer experience.” 

To learn how to leverage data to improve your customer experience, consult an expert today. Want to learn more? Request a demo, call 1.866.899.5386, or contact us for more information.

Kellie de Leon
Kellie de Leon
Kellie de Leon is the Senior Director of Content Marketing at Treasure Data. She is a marketer, writer, and speaker who is passionate about delivering relevant and valuable experiences for customers throughout the buyer’s journey to drive business growth. Connect with her on LinkedIn.
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