Multi-Channel Data Matching

Most data matching activities going on are related to matching customer, other rather party, master data.

In today’s business world we see data matching related to party master data in those three different channels types:

  • Offline is the good old channel type where we have the mother of all business cases for data matching being avoiding unnecessary costs by sending the same material with the postman twice (or more) to the same recipient.
  • Online has been around for some time. While the cost of sending the same digital message to the same recipient may not be a big problem, there are still some other factors to be considered, like:
    • Duplicate digital messages to the same recipient looks like spam (even if the recipient provided different eMail addresses him/her self).
    • You can’t measure a true response rate
  • Social is the new channel type for data matching. Most business cases for data matching related to social network profiles are probably based on multi-channel issues.

Multi-channel data matchingThe concept of having a single customer view, or rather single party view, involves matching identities over offline, online and social channels, and typical elements used for data matching are not entirely the same for those channels as seen in the figure to the right.

Most data matching procedures are in my experience quite simple with only a few data elements and no history track taking into considering. However we do see more sophisticated data matching environments often referred to as identity resolution, where we have historical data, more data elements and even unstructured data taking into consideration.

When doing multi-channel data matching you can’t avoid going from the popular simple data matching environments to more identity resolution like environments.

Some advices for getting it right without too much complication are:

  • Emphasize on data capturing by getting it right the first time. It helps a lot.
  • Get your data models right. Here reflecting the real world helps a lot.
  • Don’t reinvent the wheel. There are services for this out here. They help a lot.

Read more about such a service in the post instant Single Customer View.

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