New Name. Same Mission
After leading Gigya for a decade from its days as a venture funded startup through its acquisition by SAP in November 2017, I was excited and beyond proud this week to see SAP formally release our newly rebranded offerings to the world.
On Monday, May 14th, from its headquarters in Walldorf, Germany, SAP issued a press release entitled “SAP® Customer Data Cloud Brings Trust to Personalized Marketing Campaigns.” In it, SAP stressed the importance of our technology in a rapidly changing digital landscape that is increasingly hostile to brands using anonymized, brokered data-driven business practices. Why?
For one thing, wide-ranging research clearly shows growing consumer awareness and distrust of organizations’ use of their personal information, driven by an explosion in large scale data breaches, ongoing data misuse scandals such as the recent case involving Cambridge Analytica, and the proliferation of “fake news.” For another, new data protection and consumer privacy regulations – especially the EU’s GDPR – intend in no uncertain terms to put consumers back in control of the data collected on them by organizations.
This same intention has actually been and will continue to be our core mission as a business.
Our company has focused on helping businesses build digital strategies that put consumer identity at the heart of the customer journey. We championed and ultimately led the nascent customer identity and access management (CIAM) category with our Customer Identity Management platform, but last year, we decided we could go even further to power customer-centric businesses. We bet on the next phase of enhancing the customer experience being about consumer consent and preferences, and released a full-featured enterprise preference management solution to market in mid-2017.
And, that bet has paid off!
As it so happened, SAP recognized this emerging trend as well, and chose to purchase our business, which has been designing and implementing our solutions using “privacy by design” principles for years, as part of its SAP Hybris business unit. With its European roots and strong enterprise focus, SAP has long been a leader in data privacy and governance. Now, as part of its mission to be a “purpose-driven business,” SAP intends to make consumer trust paramount for its push to connect the front and back office and differentiate against its competition.
The number one goal of businesses today should be to deliver great digital experiences and build trusted relationships with their customers. Doing this not only drives new business, but also promotes “stickier” products and services, encourages long term loyalty and brand advocacy, and satisfies consumer privacy laws and regulations.
It also requires a comprehensive, centralized platform to achieve; one that knocks down data silos to unlock a more complete view of each customer’s journey while addressing privacy compliance across the business. This is exactly what we do, and why we are now a proud part of the SAP Family.
Here’s my big takeaway from our launch this week… Earning the trust of your customers isn’t just a matter of compliance anymore. It’s a matter of top-line growth, bottom-line sensibility, and overall success – for every business.
Mark my words, the age of the customer is here, and only businesses that put their customers wants, needs and preferences front and center will thrive within it, and our colleagues across the SAP global organization agree. With sophisticated cybercrime and “fake news” on the rise and a digitally savvy public, poor data practices are a big problem that needs to be solved, and the GDPR just made solving that problem the top priority for every company.
As we see it, it also offers a tremendous opportunity to improve people’s online experiences, and indeed their lives. To quote Clive Owen in SAP’s new global advertising campaign, “…I know who can help them do it…”
To learn more about how we’re helping our clients turn data protection and consumer privacy into a competitive advantage, check out our recent webinar with Martin Kuppinger, founder of European analyst firm, KuppingerCole.
By Patrick Salyer