Home Discovered Articles Using Data to Build Longer, More Valuable Customer Relationships


Using Data to Build Longer, More Valuable Customer Relationships

By Aubrey Harper, KlaviyoWhen brands know what their customers think, feel, and want, it’s easier to instill loyalty and provide value that translates into higher CLV. And how can retailers…

By Aubrey Harper, Klaviyo

When brands know what their customers think, feel, and want, it’s easier to instill loyalty and provide value that translates into higher CLV.

And how can retailers do that at scale? By collecting and acting on data from their audience. Consumer data helps retailers build customer experiences that drive more than just a single purchase. 

But as it becomes more difficult to collect, target, and measure with third-party data, savvy marketers are shifting their focus to zero- and first-party data.

Zero-party data is the information people voluntarily share with brands, like their email address or phone number, and first-party data is the information brands can observe about someone on their owned properties, like their website behaviorbehaviour.


In fact, a fitting name for first- and zero-party data is Customer-First Data™, because all the information comes with explicit consent, straight from the customer. 

Consider the fact that 48% of all ecommerce transactions are from repeat customers. With that in mind, retailers’ rich database of Customer-First Data may be their greatest asset as they hone in on driving more profitable customer journeys.

First, Gather Customer-First Data

For many retailers, signup forms are a cost-effective way to collect Customer-First Data from consumers. Brands can use signup form fields to ask subscribers about their:

  • Interests (e.g., what’s their favorite coffee roast?)
  • Intent (e.g., are they shopping for mens’ vs. womens’ clothing?)
  • Preferences (e.g., do they like cats vs. dogs?)

Asking these questions up front will help brands build customer profiles that they can use to target their marketing messages. To further define customer profiles, retailers can also analyse customer’s behaviors and actions, like what product pages they visit, to create personalised experiences.

Another effective way to collect Customer-First Data is to implement an onsite quiz to collect both email addresses and phone numbers while also gathering more information on the shopper.

As brands contemplate the best way to move forward with your marketing efforts using Customer-First Data, they should consider how to consensually collect more information from shoppers in order to start building out more robust customer profiles—and stronger relationships.

Then, Use that Data in Marketing Automations

Once brands have the mechanisms in place to collect this customer data, how does it translate to a higher CLV? In addition to the most popular marketing automations—welcome series, abandoned cart emails, etc.—brands should consider how to use customer data after someone makes a purchase.

With messages that are tailored to a customer’s interests, brands can make the post-purchase experience more valuable and likely to result in additional sales.

There’s a lot marketers can do to help people understand how to get the most out of the product. For example, a company that sells plants can send recent purchasers plantcare information. A company that sells food or beverages can send recipes to inspire purchasers to keep using their products.

With Customer-First Data, retailers can set these campaigns as always-on automations. When a customer takes a particular action, like buying a particular product, they enter into an email or SMS series tailored to that unique customer’s purchase history.

Another way of using Customer-First Data to drive higher CLV is to use customer satisfaction to target messages they send after a customer leaves a review—positive or negative.

For example, Brava Fabrics, a Spanish apparel retailer, separates their post-review email message into two audiences: people who left a four or five star review, and people who left a review with three stars or less.

In the positive review series, Brava Fabrics incentivises their advocates to make another purchase with a discount, plus provides an additional code they can share with their friends. For customers who give three stars or fewer, Brava Fabrics tries to turn the customer experience around in two key ways: by reaching out to them and by testing different discounts to entice them to shop again.

These are just a few examples of automations that are built from Customer-First Data—the options are endless.

What’s in Store for 2023 and Beyond?

With announcements like Apple’s iOS 14.5 update and Google’s phasing out of third-party cookies, this year is likely to be a year of brands reducing their reliance on third-party data.

But these changes act as a forcing function for brands to fully capitalize on the data they already own, which can actually translate to more meaningful relationships with customers. If brands use these changes to adopt a customer-first mindset, it will earn customers’ trust and loyalty.

While this transition may require brands to shift their thinking, these data privacy changes enable retailers to put their customers at the forefront of their marketing strategy—which is what customers really want anyway.

More Resources