What is customer data integration

IT for marketing

Golden Record: Superset of customer data from all sources

The CDH extracts and consolidates customer master data from heterogeneous data sources and forms the golden record from it. The golden record or single point of truth represents a master data set that combines the relevant attributes from all data sources and thus results in a superset of all attributes from all data sources.

Data cleansing and matching ensure data quality. Customer Identity Resolution assigns similar sentences from different sources to a single golden record. This way, duplicates can be avoided and the data quality can be further increased. In addition, the higher-level data record contains the links to all master data records in various data sources in which attributes from the golden record are used.

In this way, users can ensure that when an attribute is changed in any data source, this change is reflected in all other affected sources. On the one hand, the data remains consistent and, on the other hand, does not have to be physically moved and thus stored redundantly - as in a data warehouse solution. The result is a synchronization of the data silos. Fragmented customer data is a thing of the past.

The golden record can be automated using individual sets of rules and, if necessary, edited and supplemented manually. This creates the basis for a 360-degree view of the customer.

Most of the previous solutions on the market focus on B2B scenarios. B2C use cases, on the other hand, require master data services in near real time, and big data requires customer identity resolution. If the technology platform is based on a service-oriented architecture and offers high performance and scalability, then such master data services can be offered in real time. This has the advantage that the data quality mechanisms take effect as soon as the data is recorded - as a kind of firewall. Consistent customer data of consistent quality across all data sources can thus be ensured. Such an approach is based on the concepts of total quality management. This is crucial for customer master data management in B2C environments when high volumes of data have to be processed.

Fast analyzes are required for purchase recommendations

One application scenario in which near-real-time solutions are decisive arises, for example, in customer experience management (CEM). Companies in the B2C market are using more and more big data concepts. For example, data about customers, the market and competitors are stored in the big data framework Hadoop and used to give precise purchase recommendations with the help of fast analyzes. The crucial question in this context is: How do I recognize my customers among all visitors to the web shop? The answer is a customer identity resolution service based on the golden record concept. This service recognizes customers almost in real time so that suitable offers can be placed. The result is a consistent customer experience.


The market survey on customer information management revealed weaknesses in the operational implementation of CIM and thus also in the management of customer master data in the user companies. On the one hand there are deficiencies in the processes and goals, on the other hand in the use of technology.

As a central component for customer focus, companies should therefore invest in platforms for customer MDM that support a 360-degree customer view based on the so-called golden record in all business and project scenarios. Such platforms should be service-oriented and offer high performance and scalability so that they can be used in B2B, B2C and big data scenarios.

Companies are starting to increasingly use sources from social media. As the market survey confirms, geocoding is also becoming important. Cloud computing is also gaining ground in customer master data management. A platform for customer MDM should therefore take all of these aspects into account. (Ba)