Product News

Activate your Sigma workbooks in every business tool with Census

Katy Yuan
Katy Yuan September 11, 2023

Katy is a Product Marketing Manager at Census who loves diving into startups, SaaS technology, and modern data platforms. When she's not working, you can find her playing pickleball or Ultimate Frisbee.

At Census, we love helping you activate data — all data. Whether it comes from your data warehouse, data lake, or business intelligence (BI) application.

We’re excited to announce our newest integration with leading BI tool Sigma. Sigma is a cloud-native analytics platform that gives business users instant access to explore and get insights from their cloud data warehouse. Together, we empower businesses and teams to analyze data, activate insights, and make data-driven decisions seamlessly.

“Both Sigma and Census are on the shared journey of making data and data insights more accessible to all teams. With this new integration, our shared users can analyze metrics, derive insights, and then take action on critical data to increase revenue, improve return on ad spend, and make their business more successful.” 
— Justin Thomas, VP of Partnerships at Sigma

Sigma + Census: Better together

Together, Sigma and Census empower leading companies like Fivetran and Strategus to do more with their data. 

“Our ad ops managers can change a name in the Sigma Input Table, and automatically sync to The Trade Desk and Salesforce via Census and update the name there. What would have taken 20-30 seconds through the The Trade Desk API is down to one second with Sigma, resulting in huge time savings!”
— Mark Sussman, Director of Data and Analytics, Strategus

Mark and his team use Sigma and Census as part of their Modern Data Stack to create “real-time crosswalks” for their data across different platforms like Salesforce and The Trade Desk, allowing them to go from zero to accurate analysis at speed and scale.

Build once, reuse everywhere

Imagine you’ve spent hours building logic and analyses in Sigma. You’re thrilled because you’re finally able to visualize customer insights…but that’s just the first step. You still need to get those insights into the hands of marketing and sales teams so they can send targeted outreach, personalize engagement, and make data-driven decisions.

With the new Census + Sigma integration, anything defined or created in Sigma can be synced to your everyday business tools like HubSpot, Salesforce, Braze, Marketo, Google Ads, and 200+ other destinations. Exposing Sigma workbooks to Census as models keeps trustworthy data from the warehouse up-to-date in all your tools.

Here are some data-driven use cases you can achieve today by using Sigma with Census:

1. Reduce Customer Acquisition Costs with your Customer 360 data

Sigma has the power to analyze all of your touchpoints from your customers so you can define and track metrics like conversion rates, cost per lead, and return on ad spend. You can build a holistic view of each step of the customer funnel to identify the most cost-effective conversions.

Census takes analysis a step further and enables you to use that Customer 360 data to refine and personalize sales and marketing with the most complete customer insights. By leveraging all your unified first-party data, you can always target the right customer, with the right message, at the right time.

2. Personalize outreach across omnichannel campaigns

Marketing teams use Sigma for powerful, yet easy-to-use, data analysis to measure consumer behavior and preferences, enabling them to optimize campaigns. To meet consumer expectations, they need to deliver consistent and delightful brand experiences across all channels.

Census Audience Hub enables marketers to instantly unlock a wealth of customer data to sync audiences and insights across multiple marketing and advertising channels. Census automatically keeps customer information fresh in all tools when source data changes. The best part is, marketers no longer need code, manual CSV uploads, or engineering favors to launch smarter and faster campaigns.

3. Improve Lifetime Value by acting quickly on health scores

Sigma helps you understand how your customers interact with your website or app to identify upsell opportunities or churn risk. This data is valuable on its own, but by pairing it with Census, you can turn analysis into proactive outreach to engage accounts ahead of time.

Once you identify signals for at-risk customers, Census enables you to set up automated Slack alerts for accounts that reach a certain churn threshold, then trigger automated messaging based on those signals. Account managers and CSMs can improve customer satisfaction and boost net recurring revenue (NRR) by mitigating churn and taking advantage of upsell opportunities.

Get started

Check out this demo video to see how to connect Sigma and Census in just 5 minutes, plus a bonus use case on modeling cohorts in Braze!

For more information, visit our product documentation.


To start using Sigma and Census together, get a free trial of Census or sign up for a personalized onboarding session.

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For years, working with high-quality data in real time was an elusive goal for data teams. Two hurdles blocked real-time data activation on Snowflake from becoming a reality: Lack of low-latency data flows and transformation pipelines The compute cost of running queries at high frequency in order to provide real-time insights Today, we’re solving both of those challenges by partnering with Snowflake to support our real-time Live Syncs, which can be 100 times faster and 100 times cheaper to operate than traditional Reverse ETL. You can create a Live Sync using any Snowflake table (including Dynamic Tables) as a source, and sync data to over 200 business tools within seconds. We’re proud to offer the fastest Reverse ETL platform on the planet, and the only one capable of real-time activation with Snowflake. 👉 Luke Ambrosetti discusses Live Sync architecture in-depth on Snowflake’s Medium blog here. Real-Time Composable CDP with Snowflake Developed alongside Snowflake’s product team, we’re excited to enable the fastest-ever data activation on Snowflake. Today marks a massive paradigm shift in how quickly companies can leverage their first-party data to stay ahead of their competition. In the past, businesses had to implement their real-time use cases outside their Data Cloud by building a separate fast path, through hosted custom infrastructure and event buses, or piles of if-this-then-that no-code hacks — all with painful limitations such as lack of scalability, data silos, and low adaptability. Census Live Syncs were born to tear down the latency barrier that previously prevented companies from centralizing these integrations with all of their others. Census Live Syncs and Snowflake now combine to offer real-time CDP capabilities without having to abandon the Data Cloud. This Composable CDP approach transforms the Data Cloud infrastructure that companies already have into an engine that drives business growth and revenue, delivering huge cost savings and data-driven decisions without complex engineering. Together we’re enabling marketing and business teams to interact with customers at the moment of intent, deliver the most personalized recommendations, and update AI models with the freshest insights. Doing the Math: 100x Faster and 100x Cheaper There are two primary ways to use Census Live Syncs — through Snowflake Dynamic Tables, or directly through Snowflake Streams. Near real time: Dynamic Tables have a target lag of minimum 1 minute (as of March 2024). Real time: Live Syncs can operate off a Snowflake Stream directly to achieve true real-time activation in single-digit seconds. Using a real-world example, one of our customers was looking for real-time activation to personalize in-app content immediately. They replaced their previous hourly process with Census Live Syncs, achieving an end-to-end latency of <1 minute. They observed that Live Syncs are 144 times cheaper and 150 times faster than their previous Reverse ETL process. It’s rare to offer customers multiple orders of magnitude of improvement as part of a product release, but we did the math. Continuous Syncs (traditional Reverse ETL) Census Live Syncs Improvement Cost 24 hours = 24 Snowflake credits. 24 * $2 * 30 = $1440/month ⅙ of a credit per day. ⅙ * $2 * 30 = $10/month 144x Speed Transformation hourly job + 15 minutes for ETL = 75 minutes on average 30 seconds on average 150x Cost The previous method of lowest latency Reverse ETL, called Continuous Syncs, required a Snowflake compute platform to be live 24/7 in order to continuously detect changes. This was expensive and also wasteful for datasets that don’t change often. Assuming that one Snowflake credit is on average $2, traditional Reverse ETL costs 24 credits * $2 * 30 days = $1440 per month. Using Snowflake’s Streams to detect changes offers a huge saving in credits to detect changes, just 1/6th of a single credit in equivalent cost, lowering the cost to $10 per month. Speed Real-time activation also requires ETL and transformation workflows to be low latency. In this example, our customer needed real-time activation of an event that occurs 10 times per day. First, we reduced their ETL processing time to 1 second with our HTTP Request source. On the activation side, Live Syncs activate data with subsecond latency. 1 second HTTP Live Sync + 1 minute Dynamic Table refresh + 1 second Census Snowflake Live Sync = 1 minute end-to-end latency. This process can be even faster when using Live Syncs with a Snowflake Stream. For this customer, using Census Live Syncs on Snowflake was 144x cheaper and 150x faster than their previous Reverse ETL process How Live Syncs work It’s easy to set up a real-time workflow with Snowflake as a source in three steps: