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The Future of Data Constellations

Our third VIP event - The Future of Data Constellations – was a great success! Taking some first steps into golf, getting inspired by 3 digital and data experts, and, most importantly, networking and sharing experiences with 30 data afficionados was the ideal mix of business and pleasure.

During our first VIP event we talked about the future of data - in the scope of customer experience - with an advertiser, a vendor and the secretary of state for consumer protection Eva De Bleeker.

Last year our focus was on all possibilities, opportunities and challenges of identity with talks from Adobe, our own Web3 expert Nico and the people from Athumi regarding the Solid pods.

And this year we welcomed our audience at golf club De Kluizen in our beloved Aalst, to talk about the critical importance of establishing robust data governance frameworks and asserting ownership over valuable customer data assets.

Guiding Your Strategy with the North Star Metric

This was supported by the client case of Dechra Pharmaceuticals, presented by Thomas Molenaar (Head of Digital Marketing). As an outcome of a data maturity assessment the first step that Dechra took to become more data driven (coming from being a very sales-driven organisation) was the outline of a North Star Metric to align all stakeholders take action towards one overall business goal.

In order to measure this North Star Metric – which is based on the actively engaged professionals - as well as giving the toolbox to the different departments to contribute its success, there is a pivotal role that customer data architecture plays in enabling meaningful customer experiences.

A Customer Data Platform (CDP) plays a crucial role to create better customer experiences, also at Dechra Pharmaceuticals. However, the CDP is only powerful when it is fed by correct and valuable data on the ‘data producer’ side, and is able to activate the right channel at the right moment with the right content on the ‘data consumer’ side.

Data Rivers: Keep your Data Clean

Talking about clean and correct data with Paul De Laat (data lead in numerous big international organisations in retail, energy, fashion,…), he shared a great framework he applied multiple times to make people accountable to keep the data clean: data rivers! It is very difficult to clean a lake because of its size and shape. It is significantly more efficient to clean a river, and to keep it clean. But you can’t do it on your own. Different stakeholders will need to take ownership and responsibility, and work together to a common goal (and to the organisation’s North Star Metric).

Paul confirmed that there is – at almost all organisations he was active at - a mandatory but delicate dance needed between IT and marketing departments to create a harmonious symphony of data-driven insights. And Thomas could only agree: the success of the first phase of the data project at Dechra that has been delivered now, and the success of the next chapters is and will only be possible with the alignment and partnership with IT.

Embrace AI as a Value-Added Asset, Not a Stand-In Solution 

To end the evening, we could of course not bypass the AI topic. Philippe Vlaemminck (Co-Founder of MultiMinds) shared the ambition of MultiMinds in this area, and how we embed AI in our approaches towards data governance and customer data architecture. His main message was that you should use AI as an add-on to your organisation’s capabilities, and not as a substation.

We can’t share all details of the event, but feedback was great. Hopefully you can be part of this exclusive data gathering next year.