Janrain Executive Discusses Personalization

Janrain is a Customer Identity and Access Management (CIAM) industry pioneer founded in 2002. The company, headquartered in Portland, leads the market with its innovations and global reach. Its core consumer identity platform, Janrain Identity Cloud®, provides deep customer insights and single-view identity management of people and things, helping brands engage customers with highly personalized, consent-driven experiences that scale to the largest use cases while meeting regulatory and consumer expectations for privacy, security and control. The company manages 1.75 billion digital identities for the world’s most recognized brands.
Recently, the Janrain team shared insights into identity data solutions for personalization and customer loyalty.
How does your organization define customer loyalty?
Janrain defines customer loyalty broadly. Our definition of customer loyalty includes both customer loyalty programs and brand loyalty derived from great customer experiences throughout the buyer's journey. In order to create strong loyalty experiences, whether it’s a brand experience in store or a transactional rewards program experience, a brand must know its customers. Customer identity is central to customer loyalty, rewards programs, and other membership initiatives. To transform and expand your customer membership program and win consumer loyalty and trust, your company must understand who your members are—and then deliver the personalized, friction-free, omnichannel customer experiences that will keep savvy consumers engaged, loyal, and coming back for more.
What are the biggest challenges for brands surrounding data capture and management?
Brands struggle with a number of challenges surrounding data capture and management. Trends in customer experience and data privacy compel brands to create seamless registration experiences, allow customers to manage their data and preferences, and uphold stringent security mechanisms to avoid fraud and data breaches. Large enterprise brands also struggle with siloed data from different applications and channels, limiting their ability to fully understand the customer journey and give customers omnichannel access to loyalty program benefits.
How do your platforms help brands meet these challenges?
Janrain Identify Cloud is a comprehensive, enterprise-grade customer identity and access management solution. It allows brands to create seamless registration through social login and single sign-on, get a single, consistent view of customers across channels, collect and manage relationship data for the internet of things and other next-gen use cases, and empower customers to manage their preferences, all while maintaining industry-leading data privacy and security. Janrain has hundreds of technology integrations so a brand can easily connect its martech stack, customer-facing applications, enterprise data lakes, and other software systems to eliminate data silos.
What can brands do to improve omnichannel engagement?
In order to improve omnichannel engagement, a company needs cross-functional buy-in and an airtight customer identity management solution. Start by creating strategic goals that transcend departments and functions, then implement a customer identity management system that eliminates data silos and allows your team to have a 360-degree view of each customer. Now, you will have the power to ensure seamless brand experiences across channels and reliable data to adjust programs and processes where needed. Janrain worked with a multinational brand with a 19-million-user rewards program that, before implementing Janrain Identity Cloud, was not omnichannel. Customer could not access their loyalty accounts from different channels, which was problematic. The company sought to fix this under the umbrella of a larger, company-wide digital strategy and now enjoys industry accolades and vastly improved customer loyalty and satisfaction.
How are personalization and engagement related?
Data proves personalization directly impacts customer engagement. According to McKinsey & Company, “personalization can deliver five to eight times the ROI on marketing spend, and can lift sales by 10 percent or more.” Some examples:

  • Marks & Spencer boosted sales by 6 percent when their homepage reminded returning visitors of what they had previously added to their baskets.
  • Clothing retailer Burton saw a 12 percent uplift in conversion when it tailored its site to a visitor’s local weather.
  • Missguided, a fashion retailer, increased its revenue by 33 percent just by implementing a personalization strategy.
Why is it important to have a unified customer profile?
Without a unified customer profile, you will inevitably have a disjointed customer experience across channels, and your personalization and engagement efforts may fail or backfire. For example, sending a request for a review to a loyalty program member who has just filed a complaint via another channel. Understanding the customer journey and brand interactions across channels is critical to creating an engaging and cohesive customer experience that compels customers to participate in a rewards program and stimulates brand loyalty.
How do your platforms future-proof brands?
Janrain is a customer identity industry pioneer, and the economy of scale allows us to continuously innovate around service offerings and security. What makes a successful customer experience is subject to constant change, and brands must keep up with new user expectations, like passwordless login, windowless internet-of-things device access, and a changing topography of customer engagement points. Janrain Identity Cloud accommodates new, fast-changing requirements and trends that are often hard to predict, eliminating your business risk of falling behind the competition. In addition, with an enterprise customer identity provider, you get the benefits of a multi-million-dollar security solution with costs distributed over our hundreds of customers. In partnership with Akamai, Janrain Identity Cloud features built-in, always-on, multi-component protection against both network-based and identity-based threats.
How have you helped brands meet new data regulations?
Janrain worked with a number of brands in 2018 to help them achieve compliance with the EU’s new General Data Protection Regulation. For example, one global beverage manufacturer—a long time customer—had built their loyalty program on Janrain’s customer identity and access management solution. The Janrain professional services team worked with them to implement our consent lifecycle management capability, which enabled them to obtain explicit consent from consumers for the use of their data for marketing and personalization in compliance with GDPR requirements. One of the more challenging areas of the overall deployment was balancing the “right to be forgotten” aspect of GDPR with legal obligations to retain data during the period of a contest or promotion. This required some complex logic to ensure that the data was held for the legal term, then erased at the end of that period and the customer received notification. Watch this on-demand webinar for more information about this project.
Do you see these regulations loosening or tightening in the long-term? Why?
Data privacy regulations will continue to tighten and become adopted globally, as exemplified by the newly enacted California Consumer Privacy Act. Identities are powerful, and breaches of trust have prompted consumers to take back ownership of their identities. Smart brands are embracing this shift in consumer sentiment toward data privacy and leaning in to the opportunities created by giving consumers control of their data. By implementing customer preference centers and abiding by their requests to be forgotten, brands can enjoy more accurate data and a more engaged, loyal customers.
If you could ask one question of a competitor or a customer, what would that question be?
We always keep an open dialogue with our customers. Janrain’s customer success and professional services teams work hand-in-hand with our clients well beyond deployment to offer ongoing strategic value. With that in mind, the question we regularly ask our customers is “what are your business goals?”

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