Don’t get me wrong, I love an industry event as much as the next marketer, but sometimes I wish I could simply have the content without the tube journey, long registration lines or the mediocre cup of coffee. That’s what is great about a webinar – a chance to gather business critical information from the comfort of your own desk.
On April 2, our live webinar will empower you and your team with everything you need to know about a Data Management Platform. Tune in to find out how you can banish mixed marketing messages to your customers and how a DMP can fuel one-to-one digital experiences across all channels.
In 45 minutes, we’ll cover:
- The technology: unleashing the power of a DMP – a LIVE demo
- The value: what’s in it for me? Adding value to the Marketing, CRM, IT and Finance teams
- The customer experience: achieving the holy grail of personalised marketing across all touch points
- The results: number crunching and expected return on investment
- The implementation: preparing a business case and your definitive checklist to get started
Sound good? Register here to join us on April 2nd at 2.30pm GMT/ 9.30am EST http://www.ignitionone.com/dmp-webinar/
See you then!
By Beth Knetig, Strategic Account Director at IgnitionOne
In February 2015, Google has announced the launch of “Upgraded URLs” for AdWords. Advertisers, Agencies and Ad Tech vendors are currently working together to migrate their AdWords accounts before the July 1st, 2015 deadline.
What exactly is being upgraded?
Google AdWords is allowing for easier means of tracking sources by parsing out root URLs from tracking redirects and parameters. This allows for smoother and faster switching of assets without having to resend everything through editorial before being served. Google is essentially removing the destination URL field and replacing with a landing page field. Tracking elements will be housed in a tracking template and/ or custom parameter fields.
How should an advertiser update this?
For advertisers utilizing 3rd party tracking, they will need to work with their partners to discuss how to go about updating their URLs. For advertisers with complicated URL set ups, there will be some initial legwork and decisions to make before implementing any changes. Once this is completed, future management of assets will be much simpler.
Things to consider before migration:
- What tracking parameters will I need to remain intact?
- What new tracking parameters will I need to start tracking?
The upgraded URL offers customized tracking without compromising the editorial process for your ads.
IgnitionOne has been working with Google for the past few months to help ensure clients tracking set ups are carefully transitioned.
IgnitionOne’s URL builder will help transition clients to the new format. Current and new clients will be ready for the transition by April 2015 and we plan to migrate clients with complicated set ups well before the July 1, 2015 deadline.
Mobile is hot right now, but retailers are struggling with it. The knowledge of how mobile works, the challenge of connecting tech partners, and the ability to create a long-term growth strategy is causing confusion within the marketplace, especially among brands trying to capitalize on this exploding area in ad tech. As retailers are continuing to evolve in the digital space, mobile is becoming a large part of their annual budget and digital marketing spend, particularly for brands able to connect the dots and show an ROI based on their campaigns.
Late last month I had the opportunity to listen to Keith Petri, our VP of Strategic Partnerships, present at the “Mobile Tracking Panel Discussion: Optimal Tracking of Your Mobile and Tablet Programs to Close the Conversion Gap” at eTail West 2015. This panel, which also included Andy Nails, the Director of Data Management & Integration at Sears Holding Corporation, brought up key topics in mobile affecting the retailer and consumer when it comes to integrating mobile into your marketing strategy. Here are some highlights from their discussion:
- The Need to Understand Consumer Behavior: As Petri said, “The retailer has to understand their consumer behavior and buying behavior.” The example he brought up was purchasing a car. While you may start researching on your phone, this is a purchase that would end in store. In the case of Sears, they are very into analytics and the ability to track everything. Their ability to marry the data they collect to their loyalty program offers insights to customize the user experience. Furthermore, from a retailer’s perspective, this goes as far to impact how the mobile site is constructed (i.e. full menu bar, vertical/horizontal, screen resolution, design needs, etc.) to improve ROI.
- Overcoming Limitations: Yes, there are limitations in the mobile space. According to Petri, we have the opportunity to connect the dots. He explained that before mobile we had our home computer and a work computer, with no understanding of the connectivity between the two or our activity elsewhere in the physical world. However, mobile and static identifiers (such as Device ID) now allow us to better understand the interaction between these two environments and what we do in-between. In fact one stat said that 78% of consumers are doing research online and then visiting a store to complete the purchase. By understanding our limitations, certain workarounds can be used until more viable solutions arise to better understand cross-channel, cross-device investments.
- Physical Retargeting: With advances in technology, physical retargeting has grown in popularity. For example, consumers who login to a retailer’s wireless internet can be tracked using IP addresses, beacons and Bluetooth technology. Petri mentioned that one stat stated that 88% of consumers said they would opt-in to location tracking because of coupons. While some retailers are concerned about the “creepy factor” of having an ad served to your mobile device while you are near that product in-store, Petri explained that if you have consumer opt-in, they asked to receive coupons on certain items and/or they are in-app, this helps alleviate the “creepiness” that may be associated with this type of messaging.
- Mobile Data vs. Desktop Browsing: One audience member asked if the shelf life of cookies could differentiate between devices and what pitfalls we should look out for when doing a paid media campaign. Petri explained that a Device ID is the only static identifier on a mobile operating system, while a cookie is generated in a browser but siloed within that browser. For example, if you are in a retailer’s app it generates a cookie, but if you go to Chrome on the same device and page, it generates a different cookie that is not matched – they are siloed. By exiting the app or restarting the device, all cookies are lost. One solution is to buy paid media in-app to collect and reference back, for attribution purposes, the Device ID. This allows you to use that attribution across channel, not only for the attribution within the silo.
As you can see, mobile can be complex. It is changing every day and consumers are getting smarter. The largest obstacle is understanding the data that you have and how it can be connected across all consumer touch points to better know your consumer. To learn more about IgnitionOne and our Digital Marketing Suite, specifically our Data Management Platform, check out this article by our President, Roger Barnette, featured in AdAge last month.
During my time in undergrad at Miami University, I was fortunate enough to take a research course while studying for my degree in Marketing. This course taught us how to conduct, analyze, and report findings based on acquired data. In turn, this data-driven research could be used to provide strategic business recommendations on product launches, segmentation, brand enhancements, and targeted communication efforts.
It was in this course that a light-bulb went off in my head where I realized the key to succeeding in marketing is all in the data. The brands, consultants, and people who are able to ask the right questions, store the data properly for easy access, and analyze it for strategy development are the ones who will excel in their marketing efforts. Every day we collect thousands of fragmented pieces of data, from both anonymous and known online users, that can be pieced together to form a clear picture of your buyer’s wants and needs. As a marketer, this is a goldmine.
The key is to step-back from the daily grind and look at your strategy from the top down. Our inboxes tend to be a blur of new priorities from various stakeholders rapidly changing at any given moment. By stepping back and putting on your strategy hat, you can start to make the most of your data by following these four steps:
1. Collect the right information: Anytime a visitor wanders onto your website, opens an e-mail, makes a purchase or clicks an ad, your system is aware of this activity. Other times, you collect information from buyers by asking about their preferences and noting their purchases. While data is extremely valuable, it is even more valuable when you can directly apply it to your business needs. Make sure that the information you’re collecting is not extraneous, but targeted and strategic – always have a clear goal in mind.
2. Store everything in a central hub: From my experience, it is common for companies to have their data scattered about multiple systems. Some of it lives in outdated excel sheets, while some is stored in CRM systems not optimally designed to achieve your goals. Now that you know what data you are collecting across the entire organization, it needs to be stored in a central hub to help you build out segments. By allowing all departments to have access to all information, it provides new insight to make the most informed decisions in any department.
3. Analyze your data: With all of your data being in one central location, it suddenly becomes easier to perform data analysis. Anytime I start to analyze data, there are two approaches I take. In the first, I have a specific question in which I want to find a solution. In the second, I explore the data to see what I can find. You do not need to be an expert with data to discover what is working and what needs improvement, but you need to be curious as you look at the information that you have. If you have a Data Scientist, this would be a good time to pull him or her in to see what insights can be extracted.
4. Implement Insights: The last, and most crucial step, is to implement the insights you just discovered. If you notice that your customer base makes 3x more purchases on weekends then during the week, you might want to setup an integrated marketing campaign to monopolize on insight. By setting the campaign up as an A/B test, you can test the validity of your research. Always keep testing – nothing is every constant and your business needs will always continue to change.
Data is everywhere. It provides unique understanding of your customers where you get to know them individually, instead just a line in a list. Make the most of your data and make it a simple process for you. Marketers have enough on their plate without having to dig through 30 different vendor software platforms for information when it is time to execute a simple marketing campaign.
For more information on IgnitionOne’s Data Management Services, click here.
I recall my grade school days when I learned something new and eagerly raised my hand in class. In excitement, I would tell my teachers, “But everything connects. This new thing we learned reminds me of what we did in that previous subject. Things can’t be isolated. We must connect ideas together. Diversity is important and so are different points of views!”
Some Briggs-Myers and StrengthsFinder exams along the way into my adulthood, I learned that being a connector was my dominant strength. I fast-forward to my present life and ask myself if I hold true to my philosophy? As a Product Marketing Manager, I find myself tapping into various ideas, and product leaders to understand and narrate the bigger vision of our products.
Looking at my career, I found myself entering the world of social. I saw its huge opportunity for becoming an economic driver for companies big and small. But I knew there was more out there.
In the sea of digital, I could only begin to make sense of product offerings and what clients needed. Social was a fantastic way to enter digital because there was that people-centric focus of your audience telling you exactly what they want. But what about the rest of digital? There is email and search and display media with so many different systems and solutions. Hungry for more, I kept exploring Digital Marketing. I wanted more and I realized so did clients. With so many systems out there, I realized a marketer’s life could be wasted learning too many point solutions without actually accomplishing their campaign goals.
I came across data management systems and my mind blew away. It seemed like the perfect time to come of age as a millennial emerging out of the social media world. I needed to ascend my mindset into something bigger in digital. Diversity, different points of views, connecting things were all things I found myself yearning for. Why was I not thinking about data management platforms? I came from a world of APIs where relying on data pulls from other companies was the norm. But what about clients owning their own data and repurposing it?
In my current role as a Product Marketing Manager, I get to approach digital from a holistic perspective. I get to work with a Digital Marketing Suite which is a full stack of digital product offerings that covers all of a marketer’s digital needs. It’s not just about one channel, it’s about being cross-channel. It’s not just about one point-solution, but an integrated approach of taking all of your marketing efforts to manifest the bigger goals you have with your products and your clients. As an adolescent, I didn’t want to be a cookie cutter mold of anyone. In my role as a marketer, I find the needs of many marketers and advertisers are diverse as well. I’m happy to work with a digital hub that is as flexible as my thinking and the needs of digital leaders. You can finally get back in the driver’s seat and design your marketing experience and execution.
So the important question to ask yourselves is, “Who do you think is the winner in Digital Marketing? What is the right approach to the vast sea of digital?” Connect the dots to your digital marketing goals with perspectives from IgnitionOne and Netmining’s, “Big Book of Digital Marketing” found here.
IgnitionOne and Netmining proudly present the Big Book of Digital Marketing. This all-inclusive resource provides marketers with an overview of the latest trends and fundamental changes in the marketing landscape, a compilation of articles and thought leadership from recent months. Use it as a roadmap to marketing success in 2015. This gorgeous guide is now available as a free download here: www.digitalmarketingsuite.com/big-book/.
Get fresh insights on topics including:
- Understanding Ad Tech
- Mastering Programmatic/RTB
- Using a DMP with Cross-Device Customer Data
- Navigating in the Marketing Landscape
- Best Practices for 2015
This hefty edition is loaded with information designed to help digital marketers and agency rock stars stay on top of their game. Download your complimentary copy now.
Today we released a mid-quarter report highlighting another strong Thanksgiving weekend for digital marketing. Mobile devices represented a growth area for retail marketing, with huge increases in search spending for smartphones.
Digital marketing figures are released quarterly by IgnitionOne, as we manage more than $1.5 billion in online advertising.
Key findings in the report:
- Mobile phones dominate US Search: Mobile continues to empower consumer engagement. Not surprisingly, mobile phones saw the largest growth among device types (including tablets) at 184% YoY.
- Sleepy Saturday wakes up to much higher paid search activity: Last year Saturday was the only day to show negative YoY growth (-7%); however, this year reveals a much different story. While Black Friday had strong YoY growth at 77%, the retail momentum continued into Saturday, with 50% YoY growth overall.
- Desktop search impressions drop: US paid search impressions for desktop dropped 16.2% YoY during the Thanksgiving weekend and into Cyber Monday. It may be due to a shift in shopping patterns with more people out earlier as well as the continued trend of advertisers pulling out of the Google partner network.
- Cyber Monday growth stalls except on Mobile: Cyber Monday saw relatively low growth with respect to last year (36% compared to 60%) with the exception of mobile devices which saw 272% growth YoY.
- Programmatic Display Grows in Spend and Effectiveness: US retail spend in programmatic display increased 43% YoY along with conversions which were up 58% as advertisers delivered fewer, more targeted and effective ads.
“Mobile devices are changing behaviors of consumers across the board and extending the promotional power of the holiday weekend,” said Roger Barnette, President of IgnitionOne. “The strong results this past weekend show the savviness of marketers to reach consumers where they are and leverage the entire weekend to drive sales through digital marketing.”
This report is the latest in a series of reports from IgnitionOne, reviewing trends across the online advertising landscape. This and previous quarterly reports can be downloaded at http://www.ignitionone.com/thought-leadership/.
The fall leaves crunch underfoot as masked children flood the sidewalks, pillowcases and plastic pumpkins in hand, ready to reap the rewards of “Trick or Treat!” shouted within well-lit doorways. As I hand out treats this year, I’m reminded of how marketers are tasked with getting behind the masks of an anonymous flow of site visitors to uncover the real essence of these people engaging with brand.
Several hundred years ago, dressing up on Halloween (the eve of All Saints Day) was a way to protect yourself a “last chance for vengeance” by souls of the departed (i.e., ghosts) wandering the earth before moving to the next realm on All Saints Day or All Hallows’ Day. Not to be recognized by those souls who may be out to get them, people would wear costumes to conceal their identity, celebrating through a Celtic-Christian fusion of traditions.
Of course, marketers don’t want to harm people. We just want to get their attention to spark the purchase cycle. However, privacy and consumer surveys show that the many consumers prefer to keep those masks on, not to be identified or tracked online. At the same time, they also want the full-sized Hershey’s bar dropped into their goodie bag (not the popcorn ball or apple), meaning they also expect a relevant personalized experience delivered from the brands they interact with seamless consistency. So how do you know who wants the Almond Joy and who wants the Sour Patch Kids? What’s the trick to treating consumers to a great experience with your brand?
The best way to cast a spell on your audience is by weaving together data and context. (Even Harry Potter’s polyjuice potion required a person’s hair to create their own version of a lookalike model.) Your brand is defined by its interactions with its audience. To develop deeper engagement, marketers must find new ways to provide useful information and experiences that allow the brand to get its hooks into people.
As Carl Doty of Forrester Research explains in his report “The Power of Customer Context,” marketers need to look at interactions more than campaigns, engagement over targeting, and value exchanges over transactions. To accomplish this, it helps to know who’s behind the mask.
This spells “bubble, bubble… toil and trouble” for marketers. With unstructured data trapped and bubbling in separate systems, today’s marketers spend far too much time stirring different pots of audiences without getting a crystal-ball view of the customer journey across channels.
It doesn’t take ear wax, spiders’ legs and the eye of newt to bring clarity to your marketing brew. It takes consolidated data – plus a new way to think about who is behind those masks online so you can better treat them to a totally wicked brand experience.
George Shaw, Head of R&D at Retail Next, hosted an Exhibitor Big Ideas Session at Shop.org 2014 where he spoke about the importance of having a strategy in place to integrate new technology into your store/brand. This post focused on that topic, which can be found here. During the second part of his presentation, he focused on the practical considerations to think about when searching for a partner to help you with your specific needs. He highlighted the following four areas of importance, all of which will affect the overall shopping experience for the end user:
• Technical: The first step is to determine your specific technology needs. Walking around in any exhibit hall at a conference can be an overwhelming experience, especially if you are new to the tech space or are unaware of what you are trying to accomplish. By hosting an internal dialogue between all departments, everyone’s stakes are on the table and it begins to define what you need to succeed. The initial collaboration session will help to alleviate any confusion. Make sure to invite your IT and development team to ensure that all technology specs are known.
• Trust: If you are using a tech partner for a “mission critical component,” it has to be someone that you are able to trust. Make sure to ask them how they would respond to certain scenarios and also for recommendations/testimonials from current customers. As I am personally working with vendors, I think of them less as vendors and more of partners for success. If a problem were to occur, are they available 24/7 to help answer your answers? By making sure that you trust your partners, it sets you up for success from the beginning.
• Cost: For every company, cost is always going to be a concern. Upon researching the partner you are looking to use, make sure to discuss costs to understand both implementation and use costs. Do not forget to ask what benefits come with this package. For me personally, I receive immense value from my partners as they learn my strategic goals and work with me to help meet them. This alone is invaluable as often times they present new insights or angles to problems that will continue to grow both the brand and company value.
• Privacy: With the knowledge of data collection becoming more apparent in the media over the past three years, more than ever consumers have been concerned about how their data is being used and protected. As Shaw said, people view their data as currency and will give it to the brand if they are receiving a valuable item in return, such as features, functionality, offers, etc. Furthermore the landscape is changing rapidly, both from a best practice and legal viewpoint. It is crucial to make sure that your partner is able to speak to these in a way that provide your brand with the maximum knowledge needed to make informed decisions about marketing campaigns.