One month ago, we released a Whitepaper on the challenges of building a digital measurement infrastructure for the Digital world. This weekend, we released a companion-piece to that paper: a description of the complex ETL processes and digital data model we've developed at Semphonic to support the new world of digital analytics warehousing. I believe this is a seminal work for us - a paper that will be a huge part of the work we're doing for the next four to five years.
There is no more important problem in today's digital marketing world than developing an understanding of your customer's actual experiences with your brand and products. There are a host of catch-phrases for the problem: the full 360 degree customer view, understanding the full customer journey, achieving maximal relevancy. They all amount to the same thing: the ability to track, understand, and use for marketing and operations every single customer touch-point.
The technology to do this goes well beyond Web analytics. Indeed, it's the desire for this integrated cross-channel customer view that is driving much of the effort to warehouse digital data and the increasing fascination with big-data technologies. Because it's patently clear that to achieve this kind of customer view will require integration of traditional customer data with behavioral data from a host of digital channels; it will require advanced modeling and analytics at the customer-level; and it will require a robust set of outbound integrations to drive actual use of the data.
All this is clear enough and is already widely accepted in mature enterprise measurement departments. Every digital measurement "guru" can (and does) say as much. Unfortunately, that's where the stock wisdom ends. Because to the people who just "advise" you on digital measurement, that's a good enough story. The rest is just tactics.
Only it isn't. Because putting digital data from various channels and customer data together in a data warehouse won't solve your problem. It won't create a true 360 degree customer view. It won't enable your marketing analysts to solve the critical analysis problems in today's enterprise, and it won't allow you to target and personalize customers more effectively. What it will give you, 9 times out of 10, is the data equivalent of a big plate of very expensive, uncooked spaghetti.
What's missing from this unholy stew is a recipe for making sense of digital data and combining it with non-digital channels intelligibly. That isn't easy.
The techniques I've been writing about over the past year - things like Two-Tiered Segmentation, Key Joining, and RFM models are all critical pieces of a system to take digital data, model it effectively, and join it with customer data. In the Whitepaper, I bring all of those elements together along with a description of the ETL logic and data model necessary to do the job.
At Semphonic, we've taken all of those elements and combined them into a complete process for getting a Web analytics data feed, moving it to the cloud, processing it into a full digital data model including two-tiered segmentation, and then providing those files back to the client in either raw text, bulk-load files, or as cloud-based, fully configured SQL-Server or Hadoop data stores. We've been hard at work taking our internal processes built around these concepts and productionizing them into a client-ready system. A system that is ready to roll and available now.
The Whitepaper lays out that process in considerable detail. It provides a tremendous foundation for any enterprise seeking to build a true digital data warehouse. It also makes clear the depth of thought and sophistication that we've put into building our own ETL process and the jumpstart it can give to anyone looking to create a pilot or production digital analytics mart.
I think you'll find it a worthy companion-piece to the Whitepaper on Digital Infrastructure and a transformative piece on your views of what a digital analytics mart can and must do in today's world.
You can download the free whitepaper here on our Website.
To get more information about our new ETL services, just drop me a line!