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  • Writer's pictureAnkit Bajpai

Salesforce Data Cloud VS Adobe Real-Time CDP

-A comparative Study

Objective:

The objective of this Study is to provide a comparative study of Adobe Real-Time CDP and Salesforce Data Cloud. The report lists the key features of each platform, including real-time data activation, machine learning and AI capabilities, integration with other products, customer journey mapping, global data governance, identity resolution, data management, AI-powered insights and predictions, data privacy and compliance. This report also includes a comparison matrix and evaluation considerations.

The objective is to help understand the capabilities of Adobe Real-Time CDP and Salesforce Data Cloud, as well as their existing technology infrastructure and data integration requirements.


Introduction:

Adobe Real-time CDP and Salesforce Data Cloud (Salesforce’s CDP) are both powerful Customer Data Platforms that help businesses collect, organize, and analyse customer data in Real Time.

While there are similarities between these two platforms, there are also some key differences in terms of features and integrations.

Adobe Real-time CDP offers features such as real-time data collection and analysis, advanced segmentation and targeting, and personalization capabilities. It includes powerful analytics and reporting tools, as well as machine learning and AI capabilities (Adobe Sensei) that enable businesses to automate customer engagement.

Similarly, Salesforce Data Cloud offers features such as data integration and management, advanced segmentation and targeting, and real-time customer data access. It also includes AI-powered insights (Real time Einstein AI) and predictive analytics, as well as data governance and privacy controls.

Overall, Adobe Real-time CDP and Salesforce Data Cloud both offer powerful capabilities for collecting, analyzing, and utilizing customer data. The choice between these two platforms will depend on a business’s specific needs and preferences, including their existing technology stack and data integration requirements.


A few key features of Adobe Real-time CDP


Real-time data activation:

Adobe Real Time CDP allows businesses to collect and activate customer data in real-time, allowing for more immediate and personalized customer experiences. This means that businesses can respond to customer actions in real-time, such as sending a personalized email or displaying a targeted offer on a website.

Machine learning and AI capabilities:

Adobe Real Time CDP includes machine learning and AI capabilities (Adobe Sensei) that enable businesses to automate customer engagement and optimize customer experiences. This includes capabilities such as real-time decisioning, predictive analytics, and automated personalization.

Integration with Adobe Experience Cloud:

Adobe Real Time CDP is tightly integrated with Adobe Experience Cloud, which includes a suite of marketing, advertising, and analytics tools. This integration allows businesses to create a seamless customer experience across different channels and touchpoints, and to leverage powerful analytics and reporting capabilities.


Customer journey mapping:

Adobe Real Time CDP includes customer journey mapping capabilities, which allow businesses to visualize and analyze the customer journey across multiple touchpoints and channels. This enables businesses to identify opportunities for improvement and to create more personalized and relevant experiences for their customers.


Global data governance:

Adobe Real Time CDP includes global data governance capabilities, which help businesses comply with data privacy and regulatory requirements across different geographies. This includes features such as data residency and data privacy controls.


A few Key features of Salesforce Data Cloud

Native integration with Salesforce products:

Salesforce Data Cloud is natively integrated with Salesforce products such as Salesforce Marketing Cloud, Salesforce Sales Cloud, and Service Cloud, enabling businesses to create a seamless customer experience across multiple channels and touchpoints.

Identity resolution:

Salesforce Data Cloud includes identity resolution capabilities, which help businesses link different customer identifiers across different channels and devices, creating a unified view of the customer.

Data management:

Salesforce Data Cloud includes robust data management capabilities, allowing businesses to cleanse, standardize, and deduplicate customer data from different sources, ensuring data quality and accuracy.

AI-powered insights and predictions:

Salesforce Data Cloud includes real time AI-powered insights and predictions (Real-time Einstein AI), which help businesses identify patterns and trends in customer behavior and predict future customer needs.

Data privacy and compliance:

Salesforce Data Cloud includes a range of features and controls to help businesses comply with data privacy regulations such as GDPR and CCPA, including data subject access requests (DSARs), opt-outs, and consent management.

SDK integration with App and Website:

Integrating the Salesforce Data Cloud’s SDKs into your app or website allows you to tap into one of the most comprehensive business and customer data repositories available. This can help you make more informed decisions and drive better engagement and sales results.


Query API to fetch data:

The Query API allows developers to build custom integration solutions that can query Salesforce Data cloud's vast database of company and consumer data. Developers can execute complex queries on data to retrieve specific datasets or to refine data by applying filters and sorting options.




Focus on identity resolution:

Adobe real-time CDP and Salesforce Data Cloud (CDP) manage identities by using deterministic and probabilistic matching algorithms or a combination of both to link customer identifiers across different systems, channels, and touchpoints.

The use of deterministic matching is done when there is a direct match between customer identifiers, such as a customer's email address or phone number. This enables CDP to confidently link customer data across different systems, creating a persistent identity that is consistent across all touchpoints.

In cases where deterministic matching is not possible, platforms use probabilistic matching algorithms to link customer data based on patterns and similarities in the data. For example, a CDP might use probabilistic matching to link a customer's browser cookie data with their mobile device data based on patterns in their browsing behaviour.

The persistent identity created by both platforms is designed to be consistent across different systems and channels, providing a complete and accurate view of the customer. This allows businesses to deliver more personalized and relevant experiences to their customers, as well as track and analyse customer behaviour across different touchpoints.

Overall, both the CDP's identity management capabilities are designed to help businesses create a complete and accurate view of their customers, even when customer data is spread across multiple systems and channels. The persistent identity created by Adobe CDP allows businesses to deliver more personalized and relevant experiences to their customers, improving customer satisfaction and loyalty.


Note: Both Salesforce and Adobe CDP provide identity resolution native to their own ecosystem, which is comprehensive and persistent, however, if a best of breed architecture is in place, using a combination of Adobe and Salesforce (or any other), there would be a need to map these identities with each other. A few Salesforce systems can inherently take a third-party identifier as a primary identifier by design (ex: Salesforce Marketing Cloud) whereas Adobe may require custom development (Adobe-Campaign Classic) to do so.


Focus on Omnichannel Communication:

Adobe Real-Time CDP (Customer Data Platform) provides the ability to send customer communications through integration with Adobe Campaign Standard or Adobe Campaign Classic.

The new product suit Adobe Experience Platform consisting of Adobe RTCDP, Adobe Customer Journey Analytics, and Adobe Journey Optimizer aim to provide a one stop shop for customer experience and hyper personalized communications.

Adobe Campaign Standard is a cloud-based email marketing platform that enables businesses to create and deliver personalized email campaigns based on customer data, such as purchase history, website behavior, and more. Adobe Campaign Standard integrates with Adobe Real-Time CDP to enable businesses to leverage customer data to create more relevant and engaging email campaigns.

Adobe Campaign Classic is an on-premise cross-channel campaign management platform that enables businesses to create and deliver highly personalized campaigns across multiple channels.


Salesforce Data Cloud integrates with Salesforce Marketing Cloud to provide businesses with access to real-time customer data that can be used to create more relevant and engaging campaigns. This integration enables businesses to create personalized customer journeys across multiple channels, delivering the right message at the right time to the right customer.

In addition to Salesforce Marketing Cloud, Salesforce Data Cloud can also integrate with other third-party marketing automation platforms or customer engagement tools to enable businesses to send communications to their customers.



Need of Other Product Suites:

While Adobe Real-Time CDP and Salesforce Genie can be used as a standalone solution, integration with other products can enable businesses to create more sophisticated and effective marketing campaigns and customer experiences.


Some Adobe products that are commonly integrated with Adobe Real-Time CDP include (but not limited to):

1. Adobe Experience Platform Launch: Adobe Experience Platform Launch is a tag management solution that enables businesses to deploy and manage Adobe and third-party marketing tags across their websites and mobile apps. Integration with Adobe Experience Platform Launch can enable businesses to easily collect customer data from their digital properties and send it to Adobe Real-Time CDP for further processing and analysis.


2. Adobe Experience Manager: Adobe Experience Manager is a comprehensive content management solution that enables businesses to create, manage, and deliver personalized digital experiences across multiple channels. Integration with Adobe Experience Manager can enable businesses to leverage customer data stored in Adobe Real-Time CDP to deliver more targeted and personalized content to their customers.


3. Adobe Analytics: Adobe Analytics is a comprehensive analytics solution that enables businesses to collect, analyze, and report on customer data across multiple channels. Integration with Adobe Analytics can enable businesses to leverage customer data stored in Adobe Real-Time CDP to gain deeper insights into customer behavior and optimize their marketing campaigns and experiences.


4. Adobe Target: Adobe Target is a personalization and testing solution that enables businesses to create and deliver personalized experiences to their customers. Integration with Adobe Target can enable businesses to leverage customer data stored in Adobe Real-Time CDP to create more targeted and effective personalized experiences for their customers.


Some Salesforce products that are commonly integrated with Salesforce Data Cloud include (but not limited to):

1. Salesforce Marketing Cloud: Salesforce Marketing Cloud is a digital marketing platform that enables businesses to create, manage, and deliver highly personalized campaigns across multiple channels. Integration with Salesforce Marketing Cloud can enable businesses to leverage customer data stored in Salesforce Data Cloud to create more targeted and effective marketing campaigns.


2. Marketing Cloud Personalization: Marketing Cloud personalization integration with Salesforce Data Cloud allows marketers to create highly personalized and relevant marketing campaigns based on the data collected from different sources. This integration allows marketers to access comprehensive customer data, including demographic, behavioural, and psychographic data from various sources, such as Salesforce CRM, social media, and web analytics. They can also use predictive modelling and machine learning algorithms to identify trends, patterns, and insights that can help them optimize their marketing strategies and campaigns even further.


3. Salesforce Service Cloud: Salesforce Service Cloud is a customer service platform that enables businesses to provide personalized customer service across multiple channels. Integration with Salesforce Service Cloud can enable businesses to leverage customer data stored in Salesforce Data Cloud to provide more personalized and efficient customer service experiences.


4. Salesforce Sales Cloud: Salesforce Sales Cloud is a sales automation platform that enables businesses to manage their sales processes and customer relationships. Integration with Salesforce Sales Cloud can enable businesses to leverage customer data stored in Salesforce Data Cloud to gain deeper insights into their customers and optimize their sales processes.


5. Salesforce Commerce Cloud: Salesforce Commerce Cloud is an ecommerce platform that enables businesses to create and deliver personalized shopping experiences across multiple channels. Integration with Salesforce Commerce Cloud can enable businesses to leverage customer data stored in Salesforce Data Cloud to create more targeted and effective ecommerce experiences for their customers.


6. MuleSoft: MuleSoft is a software integration platform that allows developers to integrate different applications and data sources in order to create connected, automated workflows. It is a widely used platform for API management, data integration, and application integration.


7. Tableau: Tableau is a business intelligence and data visualization tool that allows users to connect to various data sources, create interactive dashboards and visualizations, and share their insights with others. It is widely used in industries such as finance, healthcare, and marketing to analyse data and make informed decisions.


Comparison Matrix:

Feature

Adobe RTCDP

Salesforce Data Cloud

Data Integration

Supports integration with a variety of data sources and APIs.

Offers integration with external data sources through its Data Management Platform (DMP).

Security

Adobe Real-time CDP is compliant with several security standards including GDPR, ISO 27018, NIST CSF, and HIPAA. Adobe maintains a robust security posture and keeps the latest security protocols to ensure data privacy of its customers.

Salesforce Data Cloud takes security seriously and has built in measures such as encryption, role-based access controls (RBAC), and compliance with data privacy regulations, including GDPR and CCPA

Data Management & Governance

Provides a robust set of tools for data management and governance, including data quality management, data security, and data privacy.

Offers data management and governance tools such as data cleansing, de-duplication, and data normalization.

​Data Segmentation

Allows users to segment customers based on various criteria, including demographics, behavior, and interests.

Provides segmentation capabilities based on customer attributes, such as location, age, and purchase history.

Personalization Capabilities

Offers personalized experiences across all channels- web, mobile, email, social media, and more.

Offers personalized experiences across all channels- web, mobile, email, social media, and more.

Predictive Analytics

Enables predictive analytics, which allow businesses to anticipate customer needs and deliver personalized experiences.

Offers predictive analytics tools, which allow businesses to anticipate customer needs and deliver personalized experiences.

Customer Journey Management

Provides a unified view of the customer journey across all touchpoints, from discovery to purchase and beyond.

Offers customer journey management tools, which allow businesses to track customer interactions and engagement.

Data Activation

Adobe Real-time CDP allows for immediate real-time activation of customer data through cross-channel campaigns, personalization, and ad targeting.

Salesforce Data Cloud is focused on ad targeting data activation. Integration capability with Marketing cloud enables cross channel communications

Artificial Intelligence

Offers AI-powered capabilities for predictive modelling, segmentation, and real-time analytics.

Offers AI-powered capabilities for predictive modelling, segmentation, and real-time analytics.

Third-Party Integrations

Supports integration with a variety of third-party platforms and solutions, including CRM, marketing automation, and social media management tools.

Offers integration with a variety of third-party tools, including CRM solutions, marketing automation, and social media management tools.

Reporting and Analytics

Provides real-time insights and analytics, enabling businesses to measure and optimize their marketing campaigns in real-time.

Offers robust reporting and analytics capabilities, allowing businesses to track and measure the effectiveness of their marketing campaigns.

Ease of use / Learning Curve

Adobe Real-time CDP has a moderate to high learning curve, but the platform is highly flexible, scalable, and customizable.

Salesforce Data Cloud has an intuitive and easy-to-use interface, easier to set up and manage compared to Adobe Real-time CDP.

Pricing

Adobe Real-time CDP pricing is dependent on use case, the number of data processing instances, and the volume of data processed.

Salesforce Data Cloud pricing is based on data volume and usage and requires a contract agreement.


Evaluation Considerations:

Here are some factors that a Business might consider while selecting a CDP:


Data Management Capabilities:

A robust CDP should offer features to manage, collect, process, and store customer data across multiple channels, and must offer easy integration with existing data systems.


Data Security:

The CDP must comply with all existing data privacy regulations and guidelines, such as GDPR, CCPA, and others.


Real-time data processing:

Businesses today require real-time data processing capabilities to track and analyze customer behavior and detect fraudulent activities quickly.


Scalability:

Data volumes and flow are enormous, and a CDP must be able to scale to handle the volume of data and serve customer data flawlessly.


Analytics Capabilities:

The CDP must include advanced analytics features to gain meaningful insights into customer behavior and preferences, allowing businesses to create targeted and personalized marketing campaigns.


Customizability:

Each business has specific needs, and the CDP must allow customization based on those needs. In a retail business, this is essential as it can help create individual marketing campaigns and offers for customers.


Cost:

Finally, the most critical factor would be how the CDP subscription fee compares versus the added value to the business. Additionally, considering long-term costs may help the company find the best option.


Conclusion:

In conclusion, both Adobe Real-Time CDP and Salesforce Data Cloud are strong contenders in the CDP space, and the choice between them ultimately depends on the specific needs and goals of the business. Adobe Real-Time CDP is a good fit for businesses that require real-time data activation and advanced AI capabilities, while Salesforce Data Cloud is a good fit for businesses that require strong integration capabilities and data standardization. Ultimately, businesses should evaluate both CDPs based on their specific requirements and goals before making a decision.


Resources:


*Note: this comparison is not comprehensive and there may be additional factors that businesses should consider when evaluating both platforms, including specific use cases and business goals. This is an individual opinion based on research, personal usage and is not intended to be used outside the context of education and awareness.





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