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Amplify 2015: Future of Engagement: How Smart Marketers Will Win

David Haucke from IBM and Scott Brinker from ION Interactive and presented the session “The Future of Engagement: How Smart Marketers Will Win in the Years to Come”. The idea of personalized 1 to 1 mark3ting is being realized by a few organizations.  David and Scott talked about how more organizations could take advantage of this critical component of engagement.

David talked about the practical use of marketing technology in this new age of Consumer to Business (C2B).  Some of the things IBM is working on, thinking about and dreaming of include:

  • Dynamic Personas – that is creating personas automatically using high velocity data.  This includes audience identification, modeling, and more.
  • Connect – coordinating campaigns across paid and owned channels.  IBM is thinking about how to do this right now.
  • Dynamic Campaign Optimization – automated optimization of channels, offers and mix.  This is in a “Dreaming Of” stage right now.

When IBM works on these ideas, they focus on agility, experience design and deep analytical insights.  They want to provide marketers with systems that can make these three areas real. They also use a Customer Engagement Framework that includes the following elements:

  • Understand
  • Plan
  • Design
  • Build
  • Listen
  • Optimize
  • Engage

Three big questions include:

  • Will I have the insights and tools
  • What resources and knowledge will be required
  • How do I minimize investment risk

Scott Brinker is the creator of the Marketing Technology Landscape charts and knows a ton about Marketing Technology.  By 2018 we will spend over $32B on marketing software, up from $20B in 2014.  Over $25B has been invested in marketing technology already today.  300,000+ employees in this space.

The real story is not about the technology landscape, but how much marketing is changing.  The framing of this is that marketing used to be in the business of communications and now they are in the business of creating experiences.  Google proposed the idea of a Zero Moment of Truth that happens before the traditional First Moment of Truth.

Scott said that the zero moment of truth is no longer just when a consumer looks at your website, but is really the experience they have with your site.  So you must start with Experience first.  Experience relies on the these skills:

  • Art & Copy – these are traditional areas for Marketing
  • Code & Data – now marketers need to know how to code and analyze data.

Story telling is incredibly important.  But Digital story telling includes software, configuration, algorithms, user experience, data processing & flow. Software is how marketing “sees” and “touches” customers in a digital world. Our choice of software affects our perceptions of what you think is important as a marketer.  This is why we need to think carefully about the marketing software we employ.

The most interesting intersection is between Marketing, Strategy and Technology. You could start with either strategy first or technology first.  But it is better to look at them as intertwined and circular. Marketers used to shun technology expertise, but new roles have emerged that have converged marketing and technology:

  • Marketing Technologists
  • Creative Technologists
  • Growth Hackers
  • Chief Digital Officers
  • Data Scientists

Scott talked about the Chief Marketing Technologist as somebody who works between CMO and other Executives, broader Marketing dept., IT, outside software and providers.  Gartner showed that 81% of large firms already have a CMT role, but that title was not prevalent. These are not shadow IT departments, but really is a partner with IT.

With all the work that the major vendors are doing with marketing systems, will this get simpler? Maybe, but the pace of technology change will almost always outpace our organizational readiness for adopting the change. We have to be mindful of which technology changes we are going to adopt and which we will ignore.

Even with all the technology change, marketing organizations still need the creatives as well as the technologists.


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Mark Polly

Mark Polly is Perficient's Chief Strategist for Customer Experience Platforms. He works to create great customer, partner, and employee experiences. Mark specializes in web content management, portal, search, CRM, marketing automation, customer service, collaboration, social networks, and more.

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