With big data comes great responsibility: A guide to getting the most out of your DMP


Are you getting full power from your Data Management Platform (DMP)? We get the hype because the benefits of using a DMP are clear: you become more relevant for each visitor. Personalisation in display advertising, retargeting, and email nurturing has shown great results. Therefore it is only natural for companies to want to plan their entire customer journey so that each step can be tailored to the individual visitor’s needs.

Despite all of the hype about DMP use, many who have invested in the technology have struggled to drive value and are not getting the results that they were hoping for.

Is your company considering buying a DMP? Or have you already purchased a DMP, but are now facing challenges in the implementation stage?

Our experts have agreed to supply their words of encouragement to help you get started on the long road ahead. We asked Mads-Emil H. Gellert Larsen, bmetric’s Commercial Director, and Thore Fogh Johansen, UserTribe’s Co-founder & Chief of Business Development, for their advice on how to best take advantage of your DMP. In the excerpts below, they explain some of the pitfalls that they have seen companies encounter and how to troubleshoot these challenges.

Thore Fogh Johansen“Companies are not able to see their own blind spots” Thore Fogh Johansen, UserTribe

What is your experience with a DMP?

I don’t work with a DMP system, but rather, I work with a tool that helps companies and organisations discover and understand how their clients interact with their online sites and services. Data management tools, such as DMPs, only do about 20% of the work for you. The rest of the work is left to the company itself. Oftentimes, when an organisation looks into a certain system, they will think they have found what they were looking for. But this isn’t always what they should have been looking for in the first place.

What do you think is the main challenge, then, before the implementation of a DMP?

I feel that there has to be a third party to pull an organisation out of wherever they are. Companies can’t see their own blind spots. Simply put, they see what they expect to see. This is why they need an outside perspective to take the company by the hand and show them what is actually going on.

It is important for companies to have a broad sense of what is happening before they start planning the strategy for a DMP. This complete perspective helps them be able to make better decisions about what to track in order to personalise better with a great user journey.


Mads-Emil H. Gellert Larsen“Be aware that software is not sufficient to solving a problem, but that the team behind it is just as important”

Mads-Emil H. Gellert Larsen, bmetric

What is your experience with a DMP?

I have worked alongside many companies trying to implement various advanced data management tools to improve their commercial growth. I feel that the actual implementation of a DMP is relatively straightforward. The biggest stumbling blocks I’ve seen relate to insufficient planning before implementation.

What should a company think about before implementing a DMP?

A DMP is a tool, and as with any other tool, you need a plan and a team who can manage it on a daily basis. Once the platform has been set up and the consultants have taken off, the job of managing the DMP falls back on the company.

It all depends upon the chosen DMP, but here are some preliminary steps to go over before implementing one. These steps will hopefully help you before you invest millions in big data.

  1. First, an organisation needs to plan what the DMP is going to be used for. What is the goal? What is the short term goal for each department in the organisation? What tools does the platform have available to execute all these goals? In this process, fix any incongruities so you don’t run into budgeting issues later. Identify a person in your organisation who will manage the project and others that can help along with the implementation.
  1. Secondly, have a data strategy in mind. Think of what type of data you want to collect and how. Different technologies and techniques capture data from different sources and channels. This is so important to understand because most companies try to connect with single session ID’s that should keep track of the entire journey with enterprise resource planning (ERP). However, no matter how much they try, the problem is still that the customer journeys is often interrupted in the tracking process. As a result, most websites don’t recognise 75-90% of their visitors in their DMP. If you are spending millions to create this DMP database with the goal of personalising the customer journey, how are you going to deal with those visitors for whom the customer journey hasn’t been tracked?

The challenge is not only limited to losing track of anonymous visitors who use ad blocking/hiding tools. Gathering data across several touchpoints is perhaps the biggest technical challenge of them all. For webshops, it should be quite simple right? The purchase of the product is done online, so the customer journey is easier to track. But it’s not that easy. Modern customers switch from mobile to desktop devices in the middle of their customer journey, making it harder for companies to track their data. And it gets even further complicated when a customer service centre is involved, whether physically in a store or a through a call centre.

(3) Third, start by implementing those two steps. Let the data flow, have a look at it and fix if any problems. You might need a few months/years for the data to come in. In the meantime, a company can look into tools that can help personalise an online experience better. This is, after all, the main goal of a DMP.

The technique that stands out the most is content marketing. It is a method that I see is commonly used by companies to connect with their audience. But is your team ready to increase their workload x5 in order to produce this content and tailor it to individual customers? Content personalisation lets you target different content to different types of groups of visitors based on their behaviour or other factors. So it’s a whole lot of content that needs to be produced for this method to work. But have you planned your budget with this added expense in mind? Staying on top of this trend requires having adequate manpower and the right technology.

(4) And last – measurement and optimisation. After gathering all that data and implementing it, start measuring the results. I feel that organisations need to go beyond A/B split testing button colours. Make sure to personalise through all aspects of your user journey. But be aware that you will face a big challenge in paying for and setting up a system that is able to execute these results every day. I see many smaller web shops changing colours/design to target customers based on gender or location. However, this is much harder for a corporation with a strong corporate identity to do. Ask yourself: How are you going to work within these limitations to personalise? Why is this personalised content more relevant to this visitor than the generic content you had before? Who is going to gather the data insights and forward them to the executing team?


There is no simple solution for doing all this, no one trick pony so to speak. It’s a long journey to get from buying a DMP, to acting on your data, to achieving tangible results. But you will get there, with realistic expectations, if you rise to meet the challenges.


UserTribeAbout UserTribe: UserTribe presents you with a full-stack framework for including behavioural customer insights in every aspect of your business, and every single phase of your projects. We call that Customer Empowered Business.

We offer you insights into how your customers experience doing business with your company and your competitors, and we enable you to integrate and secure the implementation of the learnings and best practices we provide you with.

Customer Empowered Business provides a solid foundation for optimising your business and making wiser and faster business decisions.


bmetricAbout bmetric:

By nudging your visitors at the right time, with the right channel and message, our platform: increases conversions, average order value and helps improve customer service. bmetric engagements work well towards first-time visitors because we can operate based on data impulses and signals. Our team boosts the impact of your DMP & Marketing cloud by implementing their data in our engine. Thereby taking action on your data.

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