What: The Profile Import connection allows you to synchronize data from various marketing platforms and databases into BlueConic via delimited flat files. User profiles can be created or enhanced with this data.
About BlueConic: The BlueConic customer data platform harnesses the data required to power the recognition of an individual at each interaction, and then synchronizes their intent across the marketing ecosystem.
Why: Transfer customer data from internal data warehouses (dwh), CRM databases, analytics platforms, and other marketing systems to enrich BlueConic profiles with purchase history, predictive analytics segmentation (e.g. propensity modeling and lifecycle signals). This data can then be used directly within BlueConic or synchronized out to other marketing platforms to interact with users with relevancy and enable right-time messaging.
For the connection to work, you must have a publicly available comma separated values (CSV) file to add import data from. The CSV file must contain at least one field that can be mapped to a unique identifier in BlueConic.
Configuring the connection
The connection is configured in two steps:
Setting up the Profile Import connection
In the connection's Set up and run page, you configure the whereabouts of the file to import.
CSV source and authentication
To make the connection work you will have to designate the details of the import: how to retrieve the data file and how to interpret its contents. Depending on the import source you select there are different options to fill out.
- Import source
- Choose "HTTP(S)" to import a file from a website, or choose "SFTP" to import a file from a SFTP server. You can also import data from Amazon Simple Storage Service (S3 buckets) which requires access keys and Dropbox, Box, and Google Drive which all require secure authorization.
- Preview SFTP path
- A preview of the URL that will be used. This will be composed from the other SFTP settings.
- SFTP Server
- The hostname of the SFTP server.
- The SFTP port number to use. If you leave this empty the default port number 22 will be used.
- The SFTP username to use as login.
- Authentication method
- The authentication method to use for SFTP. You can choose from "Password authentication" and "Public key authentication."
- The SFTP password to use.
- Private key
- Upload the private key that you will be using.
- CSV Path
A valid URL to the file that should be imported, e.g. https://www.host.com/file.csv if your import system is "HTTPS", or a path like /file.csv if your import system is "SFTP".
For SFTP globbing is supported, meaning you can use "*" to match multiple characters of the filename, e.g. the path /export-*.csv will match both /export-aaa.csv and /export-bbb.csv. The import connection keeps track of which files have been imported and will not import the same file again, unless its size or last modified date changes.
When using Box, be sure to enter the path in the CSV Path field as it appears in your Box interface, not as it appears in the URL. For example, if your file in Box is Directory Name/filename.csv, enter "Directory Name/filename.csv" and not "Directory_Name/filename.csv".
- Email notifications
- Optionally enter one or more email addresses that should receive email notifications when the connection runs or fails to run.
Importing data into BlueConic
Now that the connection has been configured under About the Profile Import connection, it is time to configure the details on the contents of the file. BlueConic guides you through the process of configuration.
Before you continue, make sure you activate the "Import data into BlueConic" goal:
CSV file format
Before we delve into the CSV file and field handling settings, let's first have a look at the actual text format of the file that we're about to import. Let's assume we're about to import the following data:
This would be exported as the following CSV text file:
id,ib_avg,ib_ddg,ib_z1,ib_z2 aghvww32,4123551,GK,open,3 agkkemw3,4233215,GK,open,0 alfk3oor,4135111,GR,open, bezz5las,4009852,GR,closed,0 c9uuz5g0,4823507,K,closed,1 cc2rkes6,4222941,G,open,1
The first line of the CSV file is expected to contain column names, separated by a comma. Each following line is expected to contain values with the same number of columns.
1. Set up CSV files to import data from.
The first entry displays which CSV files have been found, based on the about settings:
Click the Rescan files button to update the list. Hover over a file to get a preview of how the CSV fields will be interpreted by the import.
2. Set up CSV file and field handling.
Configure the way this information should be handled:
- CSV field separator
- The character that separates columns in your CSV file. This is typically , or ;.
- Multi value separator
- Optional: the character that separates multiple values in columns in your CSV file.
- Date format
- Either have BlueConic detect a date format, or set a custom date format.
- Time zone
- Select the time zone to use when importing date and time values.
3. Link identifiers between CSV files and BlueConic.
BlueConic can only map imported data to profiles if at least one of the imported columns should be imported to a profile property that is a unique identifier. So, you need to determine how BlueConic can recognize matches:
Select a column name on the left and select the BlueConic profile property it should match on the right-hand side. Or click the type selector and select "BlueConic profile identifier" if the CSV field will contain a BlueConic profile identifier.
Information will only be imported if an exact match for the linked identifiers is found in an existing profile, unless the checkbox is activated to allow the creation of new profiles. In the latter case a new profile will be created in BlueConic.
4. Map CSV data to BlueConic profile properties.
Finally, configure which CSV values should be mapped to which BlueConic profile properties:
Select from the menu how the value should be imported:
- Set: Always overwrite the profile property value in BlueConic.
- Set if empty: Import the value in BlueConic only if the profile property does not contain a value yet.
- Add: Add the imported value to the list of values for the profile property. The list will only contain unique values; doubles are not imported.
- Sum: Numerically add the imported value to the value of the profile property in BlueConic. If the profile property was empty, it will be treated as 0. If the imported value is not a number, it is not imported.
As you may have noticed, the transfer mapping in the screenshot above does not import every field in the export into BlueConic; the fields "ib_z1" and "ib_z2" will not be imported. There is no need to clutter BlueConic's data storage with values that serve no purpose in BlueConic or other connected systems. It is a best practice to only import values of interest to BlueConic use cases.
Schedule and run the connection
Synchronizing is done at scheduled intervals. How to configure the schedule for your connection is discussed in-depth in Scheduling Connections.
If a file has already been imported, will it be imported again?
If the connection configuration has not been changed, and a file has already been imported, it will not be imported again. If the file has changed, or the configuration has changed, files will be reimported.