Salesforce opens up its second-party data marketplace

Data Studio, which had been restricted to Salesforce subscribers, now allows anyone to buy, sell or trade customer data.

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User Data

In October of last year, Salesforce acquired data management platform (DMP) Krux. Today, the marketing software giant announced the general availability of its Data Studio, a marketplace of B2C second-party data that is built on Krux’s Link product.

The Data Studio had previously been available only to subscribers of the Salesforce platform, but now anyone can pay the monthly subscription and make arrangements for participating brands’ first-party data, which — when bought, sold or traded — is known as second-party.

Typically, Marketing Cloud Chief Strategy Officer Jon Suarez-Davis told me, the data is used anonymously, but usage and prices are up to the transacting parties. While the focus is on second-party data, any kind of data can be exchanged.

Salesforce pointed to one use case where Conagra uses Data Studio to directly market its Hunt’s Tomatoes to registered users of recipe sites.

In a hypothetical use case, a cosmetics advertiser might run ads to its registered customers who have been located as subscribers of the online version of a fashion-focused magazine, by matching email addresses with email addresses.

Suarez-Davis said there are currently “dozens” of publishers and advertisers employing Data Studio, including Bazaarvoice, Kayak, Penske Media Corp., Publishers Clearing House, Univision and the Enthusiast Network.

Part of Marketing Cloud

Data Studio is part of Salesforce’s Marketing Cloud, whose other components include Email Studio, Mobile Studio, Ad Studio, Journey Builder, Social Studio and the Salesforce DMP (Data Management Platform), the latter of which is focused on matching data sets and delivering segments for targeting.

Among Salesforce’s biggest competitors, Adobe also has its Audience Marketplace for the buying and selling of second- and third-party data, and Oracle has a major B2B audience data marketplace, in addition to data platforms BlueKai, Datalogix and AddThis.

Suarez-Davis said that Data Studio’s differentiators include the subscription model (after which participants pay whatever they arrange for data deals), the fact that it’s a standalone offering and not bundled with any other Salesforce component, upcoming integrations with the company’s Einstein AI layer and new Audience Discovery and Search features.

Those features allow a publisher or advertiser to find audiences, discover overlapping attributes among data sets and reach new potential customers. This type of discovery and search functionality “is the day job of DMPs,” Suarez-Davis acknowledged, but the difference here is the orientation toward second-party data.

When it was Krux Link, he noted, the data pricing was CPM-based, and it was bundled with the DMP.

Opinions expressed in this article are those of the guest author and not necessarily MarTech. Staff authors are listed here.

About the author

Barry Levine
Barry Levine covers marketing technology for Third Door Media. Previously, he covered this space as a Senior Writer for VentureBeat, and he has written about these and other tech subjects for such publications as CMSWire and NewsFactor. He founded and led the web site/unit at PBS station Thirteen/WNET; worked as an online Senior Producer/writer for Viacom; created a successful interactive game, PLAY IT BY EAR: The First CD Game; founded and led an independent film showcase, CENTER SCREEN, based at Harvard and M.I.T.; and served over five years as a consultant to the M.I.T. Media Lab. You can find him at LinkedIn, and on Twitter at xBarryLevine.

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