CDPs for Customer Engagement and Retention

A continuation of our Warehouse series, this blog focuses on building a cross-functional team to maximize the potential of data warehouses and CDPs working in tandem

By Sean Spediacci

Our previous post explored the origins and convergence of Data warehouses and Customer Data Platforms (CDPs) and how their integration has become the cornerstone of modern enterprises' growth strategies. As we continue the series, we'll focus on building a cross-functional team to maximize the potential of data warehouses and CDPs working in tandem. We'll identify critical stakeholders from engineering, data, and marketing and discuss strategies for uniting them to address use cases and drive innovation in customer engagement and retention.

Part 2: The Significance of a Cross-Functional Team:

Organizations must foster collaboration across various departments to fully leverage the combined power of data warehouses and CDPs. If we break down the acronym CDP, we should always remember that the goal of working together is to focus on the Customer first. This requires fostering a customer-driven culture that leads by listening to the voice of the customer in the Data and building a robust Platform for collecting and activating their preferences so we can adapt to the customer’s needs as we engage with them.   

A cross-functional team made up of members from engineering, data, and marketing is not only beneficial but crucial for ensuring the seamless integration and utilization of these technologies. Organizations can develop a holistic approach to data management and customer engagement by bringing together diverse skill sets and perspectives.

Key Stakeholders:

  • Engineering: The engineering team is crucial in implementing and maintaining the technical infrastructure required for data warehouses and Customer Data Platforms (CDPs). Engineering teams are also vital in implementing event capture libraries across applications, websites, and mobile platforms. These libraries standardize the capture of behavioral events on the front end before they are sent downstream to various destinations. Engineers work closely with data and marketing teams to understand the specific behavioral events these teams need to capture to meet their requirements.

  • Data: Data scientists and analysts form the core of data-driven organizations, tasked not only with extracting insights from extensive data in warehouses and captured by CDPs but also with empowering business users. Their job involves providing the necessary data to make informed decisions for analytics while ensuring a unified definition of the customer across operational systems such as help desks, marketing tools, and sales platforms. By employing advanced analytics like machine learning and predictive modeling, data teams reveal patterns and trends in customer behavior, informing marketing strategies and personalizing experiences. However, synchronizing all systems to operate off a single customer record definition presents a significant challenge.

  • Marketing: The marketing team is a key player in customer engagement and retention, leveraging insights from data warehouses and CDPs to tailor campaigns, personalize content, and enhance the customer journey across various platforms. However, when marketing tools are isolated from the data stored in warehouses, marketers face significant challenges in accessing and utilizing this data directly for complex targeting efforts. Typically, they must coordinate with data teams to extract sophisticated audience lists, a process that can slow down campaign execution and reduce agility. While CDPs assist in forming customer profiles, they often fall short in enabling more intricate targeting without further engineering support. This necessitates a collaborative effort with data teams to devise and implement data-driven strategies that effectively resonate with segmented customer groups.

Uniting Stakeholders to Address Use Cases

Organizations must foster collaboration and communication among key stakeholders to leverage data warehouses and CDPs effectively. Here are some strategies for uniting these teams

Establish clear goals and objectives:

This is a critical first step in leveraging the integration of data warehouses and Customer Data Platforms (CDPs) to their fullest potential. This involves clearly defining the specific use cases and desired outcomes that the organization aims to achieve through this integration. It's essential to articulate what success looks like, whether it's improved customer insights, enhanced marketing campaigns, or more personalized customer experiences.

To ensure a cohesive effort toward these goals, it's vital that all stakeholders—from engineering and data teams to marketing and executive leadership—are not just aligned, but they are the driving force behind the objectives. This alignment includes: 

  1. A thorough understanding of each party's role in the integration process 

  2. How each group will contribute to achieving the established goals.

Setting clear goals and objectives aids in the evaluation of the integration's effectiveness over time. By having predefined metrics for success, organizations can measure progress, identify areas for improvement, and make informed decisions about future data strategies. This strategic approach maximizes the benefits of data warehouse and CDP integration and facilitates a culture of data-driven decision-making within the organization.

Encourage cross-functional collaboration:

Once clear goals and objectives are established, creating opportunities for engineering, data, and marketing teams to collaborate closely on projects and initiatives is crucial. By fostering a culture of data-driven decision-making, organizations can encourage all stakeholders to utilize insights from data warehouses and Customer Data Platforms (CDPs) in their everyday processes. This mindset shift promotes a more strategic approach towards leveraging data, resulting in projects and initiatives that are deeply informed by actionable insights.

To ensure these cross-functional meetings are outcome-focused and adept at overcoming blockers, organizations must prioritize setting clear objectives. Design these sessions to drive collaboration and innovation by enabling team members with varied backgrounds to contribute their unique insights and skills towards achieving specific goals and resolving any challenges that may arise.

By setting up cross-functional teams and defining specific use cases that require input from engineering, data, and marketing, companies can ensure that these teams have a focused direction to work towards together. Creating shared workspaces, either physical or digital, can further enhance this collaboration, providing a platform for continuous communication and idea exchange. This collaborative environment not only accelerates project development but also breeds innovative solutions that may not have been discovered in siloed teams.


Building a cross-functional dream team is not just essential for maximizing the potential of data warehouses and CDPs in driving customer engagement and retention – it's a gateway to a world of possibilities. It's about maximizing the potential of data warehouses and CDPs in driving customer engagement and retention. By bringing together key stakeholders from engineering, data, and marketing, organizations cannot only develop a holistic approach to data management and customer-centricity but also pave the way for innovation and growth. Through collaboration, training, and continuous iteration, businesses can stay ahead of the curve in delivering personalized experiences and fostering long-term customer loyalty, and that's where the real excitement lies.

In our next post, we'll explore real-world examples of how leading companies are leveraging data warehouses and CDPs to drive growth and innovation. Stay tuned for insights and inspiration on applying these strategies to your organization.


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