In a world of proliferating channels, devices, and platforms, marketers need to refocus on what truly matters: people. They need to leverage their data to connect with unique individuals, wherever they are present and paying attention. This is People-based Marketing, and it enables marketers to deliver the seamless and personalized experiences that today’s consumers expect.
But implementing People-based Marketing requires a brand to converge their advertising technology (adtech) and marketing technology (martech). By converging adtech and martech, marketers can:
– Bring the intimacy they enjoy in marketing channels (email, direct mail, telemarketing and social) to advertising channels (display, mobile web and video)
– Reach known audiences with accuracy and precision in channels that were previously restricted to prospecting to the unknown
– Achieve both relevance and reach throughout the entire consumer journey
Marrying adtech and martech fosters a consistent and engaging relationship with your customer, irrespective of device, channel or platform. In other words, you never have to treat your customers like strangers again.
In a May 2017 study conducted by Forrester Consulting and commissioned by LiveIntent, “Kick-Start Your Adtech/Martech Convergence,” we tracked the progress of marketers in converging their advertising and marketing technology as they look to execute People-based Marketing. Sure, it’s early days yet. But only 7% of firms say they haven’t planned or discussed adtech / martech convergence, and 35% of marketers are already taking action today.
There are a number of things marketers need to do in order to achieve the benefits of converging adtech and martech, and successfully execute People-based Marketing:
Tip 1: Remove silos between marketing and advertising
In the study, 42% of marketers said a significant barrier to converging adtech and martech is “difficulty working across internal silos.” Almost one third of marketers also ranked customer data consolidation as one of the chief barriers to adtech/martech convergence.
To succeed with People-based Marketing, marketers need to break down departmental siloes and data siloes. Marketers, advertisers, and agencies must overcome operational hurdles and collaborate around the vision of a holistic customer journey. They must change their processes and share their data in order to best influence customers at different stages in their journeys. And they must rely on the right kind of partnerships that can help them quickly align and start reaching shared business goals.
Tip 2: Integrate data using the right identifier
Marketers have historical data stored in Customer Relationship Management and Point of Sale systems, email engagement data, online behavioral data, and more. Marketers have a preponderance of data to leverage, but this data is oftentimes siloed. People-based Marketing requires tying all of this data to a persistent identifier that can be used to recognize known individuals across all digital channels and devices.
When asked about the value of different types of customer data that helps marketers understand Identity, 89% of marketers said the customer’s email address was valuable or extremely valuable to them.
Email is the key to stitching together complete, cross-channel customer profiles. Unlike a cookie, the email address is tied to a person, and links consumer activity across multiple devices and channels. Email is also persistent, as people keep the same email address, even when they change the devices they use, the social networks they rely on, the stores they shop at, or the media they consume.
Tip 3: Develop engaging cross-channel journeys
A single customer view enables marketers to really understand customers. Marketers also need a method to leverage insights to personalize campaigns, and to reach the customer wherever they are paying attention.
With People-based Marketing, marketers are no longer restricted to reaching their known customers in their brand’s owned media, via channels such as email and direct mail. Marketers can also leverage their data to reach their known customers in channels previously reserved for advertising.
The email address is a deterministic ID that makes this possible, as it can be used to recognize and reach customers at multiple touch points throughout the customer journey, in both owned and paid media, and to ensure a relevant and consistent experience.
The study results show that improved customer satisfaction is the most commonly anticipated benefit of the convergence of adtech and martech. More than half of marketers queried said that they anticipated achieving this benefit.
Tip 4: Focus on driving long-term profitable growth
Marketers need to deploy marketing campaigns that drive growth for their companies.To do this, they must first optimize cross-channel interactions that compose individual customer experiences. According to a report by the consulting firm IDC, consumers that engage across channels hold a 30% Customer Lifetime Value (CLV) than a customer that engages on one channel.
But in the study, less than half of respondents indicated they are capable of campaign measurement and attribution, which is necessary for determining CLV and Return on Investment (ROI). True People-based Marketing ties campaigns back to specific individuals, so marketers can close the loop on attribution. Marketers need more than aggregate reach numbers, they need to see what interactions are driving increased revenue with individual customers.
Rather than relying on ephemeral metrics such as Click-Through-Rate and Cost-Per-Click, marketers need to focus on long-term business outcomes for their brands. This requires understanding customer lifetime value, engagement, and ROI at the user level.
Tip 5: Form the right technology partnerships
About a third of marketers cited the concern of technology costs as a barrier to convergence. Marketers need to consider leveraging partners who can help them enhance and utilize the valuable data they’ve been collecting as opposed to adopting new platforms and tech stacks.
For example, some vendors are creating identity graphs that work alongside existing technology stacks. With an identity graph, customer data collected in the martech stack can be enhanced with both first and third-party data sources, and tied to individual customers in a privacy-safe way. This data can then be leveraged in the marketer’s adtech stack, so marketers can reach customers at key everyday moments, wherever the customers are and on whatever device they’re using.
An open identity graph provides the additional benefit of data transparency. This helps break down barriers between marketers, advertisers, agencies, and tech companies. For example, from the same identity graph, an agency can gain insights about the best performing creatives, a vendor can wield the data to build more effective technology to optimize campaigns, and the marketer can gain insights to use across multiple channels.
With the rise of the digital era, consumers now face endless options for researching and purchasing products, and they have become more savvy and selective. This means that brands need to think about how to differentiate on customer experience. The ultimate customer experience can be achieved through People-based Marketing, and that requires the convergence of adtech and martech.
57% of companies queried in the study said they plan on converging their marketing and advertising technologies within the next two years. Early adopters can gain a competitive edge and begin managing engagement across the entire customer lifecycle. It’s easy for marketers to get a jumpstart by using customer data they’ve been collecting for years (such as the email address), and relying on partners who can help them quickly leverage this data to identify and reach consumers at key touchpoints in the buying journey.
To find out more on how you can kick-start your adtech/martech convergence, read the full study here.