Marketers: It's time to phase out the preference center
Throughout my consulting experiences with companies of all shapes and sizes, I’ve cultivated a passion for improving first-party customer data. At first glance, this may seem like table stakes — but you’d be surprised to learn that even the world's most digitally advanced companies don’t always have their first-party data in order.
While better customer data is certainly valuable on the business side, I'd argue that the end user is the main beneficiary. Equipped with solid first-party data, marketers have the power to deliver relevant messaging, personalized content and real-time interactions — aka the driving forces behind incredible customer experiences.
Up to this point in time, the industry has simplistically referred to the way marketers collect, maintain and deliver the types of communications customers want as the “preference center.” For most marketers, a preference center is thought of as a glorified opt-out page where people go to unsubscribe from annoying emails.
But at Horizontal, we have a drastically different perspective. We're thinking bigger.
In our eyes, a purposefully built preference center allows you to capture profiling information, granular subscriptions (instead of a global opt-out), interest data and even answers to relevant marketing-based questions. All this rich, first-party data drives how you interact with your customers and how you send them messages on every channel.
The marketing industry needs to move past the antiquated concept of the preference center and begin to aspirationally call it an “experience center.” If architected correctly, an experience center will be the first — and most frequent — interaction a customer has with your company. Ultimately, it should guide their lifelong journey.
We believe there is such a massive gap in the “preference center” ecosystem that we’ve built our own bespoke experience center solution for marketers, built by marketers. And the best part? It’s built with clicks — not code.