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Data driveN customer experiences (DDCX) Salesforce reference architecture

Isaac Frimpong, Rebecca Rusby, Matthew Morris
30 Jun 2023

In a world where customer experience is the future, we take a look at how data can be collected, transformed, analysed, and activated in real time to enable enhanced marketing, customer service, and customer-facing portal experiences. Find out more in blog three of our Energy Transition & Utilities series.

In the final blog in our short series exploring data driven customer experiences (DDCX) within utilities businesses, we review the Salesforce reference architecture that can be used to unlock the power of data.

A) Architecture landscape

Customers of utility businesses are increasing looking for targeted, personalised communications and access to information in real time. With data readily available from multiple sources and touchpoints, the key to success is to capture data in one place, enabling the creation, storage and sharing of a single profile of each and every customer, their behaviours, requirements and preferences. This is made possible with Salesforce Data Cloud.

Salesforce Data Cloud sits at the heart of our reference architecture for DDCX, our end-to-end view of the technologies best placed to implement DDCX in a utilities environment. Whilst this can be different for each business, the desired end-to-end architecture below is designed to show that DDCX can be implemented at scale, utilising various technologies to enrich customer experience and the quality of communication.

This architecture should not be viewed as an overnight transformation, rather a progressive introduction of new systems to enhance the user journey at multiple touchpoints.

Figure 1 – End to End Salesforce Reference Architecture powered by Data Cloud

There are various systems in play within the architecture shown above and the key is to deploy the right combination for each client when implementing DDCX. But what are some of the key components of this architecture?

B) Key DDCX components

There are multiple systems in play to deliver DDCX and sometimes different terminology is used interchangeably when discussing them. To clarify this, we have listed the three fundamental components below, along with their characteristics, plus a reference card for what each component should be used for – and what it should not be used for.

Salesforce Data Cloud

Data Cloud is Salesforce’s new solution that enhances its existing capability to provide a real time data platform which helps unify all your customer data. Data Cloud harmonizes and stores your customer data at huge scale, and transforms it into a single, dynamic source of truth. Features of the Salesforce Data Cloud platform include:

  • Real time data – to create experiences seamlessly
  • Built in connectors – to bring data in from multiple systems
  • Unified customer profiles – created from all customer touchpoints

Here are some key points to help understand how best to use Salesforce Data Cloud.

Figure 2 – Salesforce Data Cloud features & misconceptions

Salesforce Marketing Cloud Personalisation

This is Salesforce’s product to deliver real time decisioning and personalisation at scale, providing you with the opportunity to curate the customer experience whilst they browse on your website, engage via email/SMS/push, and offer next best action in store.

Key features include:

  • Real time web personalisation – using powerful, real-time segmentation and AI to determine and delivery personalised web experiences that inspire customers
  • Campaign attribution – assessing how much revenue has been driven from online and email campaigns actioned via personalisation
  • Product recommendation – using the power of Salesforce Einstein to recommend the most relevant products, content, categories and more, based on each customer’s unique characteristics and preferences.
Figure 3 – Marketing Cloud Personalisation features & misconceptions

Data Lake

Data Lake is a data warehousing platform that allows users to store, manage, and analyse large amounts of data in a secure and scalable manner. Features include:

  • Single fully managed solution – analyse data sets previously impossible to obtain and store and access your structured, semi structured, and unstructured data in one location to gain seamless access to external data with similar scale and speed.
  • Near unlimited resources – a multi-cluster shared data architecture separates compute from storage, enabling customers to elastically scale, up and down, automatically or on the fly. Users can apply dedicated compute clusters to each workload in near-unlimited quantities for virtually unlimited concurrency without contention
  • Fully automated – setup automations enable you to easily operate at scale, optimise costs and minimise downtime.


In conclusion, this DDCX series has emphasised the vital role of data-driven customer experiences in the utilities industry. We’ve showcased the importance of personalised communication, with real-world examples, and highlighted the centralising power of Salesforce Data Cloud.

We hope that the key takeaways from this series contribute to your thinking and help you to embrace the technologies and approaches that can transform the quality of the customer experience. Together we can harness the potential of data and cultivate fruitful, long lasting relationship with our customers.

Isaac Frimpong

Senior Solutions Architect | Salesforce Marketing Cloud | Capgemini
Isaac is a skilled professional with a strong focus on Salesforce Marketing Cloud. His expertise extends to cross-cloud projects, complex integrations, and supporting digital engagement transformations. With certifications in Salesforce Marketing Cloud and Data Cloud, he brings exceptional proficiency in architecture delivery and implementing effective solutions.

Rebecca Rusby

Data Driven Customer Experience lead (UK & EU) | Capgemini
Business leader working across a variety of industries and on a diverse range of challenges, all centered around improving the way businesses utilize data, analytics and enabling technologies to optimize customer experience, across commerce, marketing, sales and customer service. Committed and passionate about improving knowledge of new growing areas of data and CX best practices.

Matthew Morris

Salesforce Innovation Director | Capgemini
In collaboration with our clients and experts, Matthew leads the creation of the next wave of multi-cloud applications.