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3 Trends Will Change Marketing IT Needs

Mobile, the 'Internet of Things,' personalization: Preparing for the perfect storm.

June 16, 2014 By Josh Manion
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If you're in the digital marketing business or conduct any business online, a word of caution: We're heading into the marketing equivalent of the perfect storm. Three converging forces—the explosion in mobile, the expanding "Internet of Things" and the drive for greater personalization—are changing the market at every level.

This year has seen a major realignment in the market, as everyone is moving into the ad tech space. Oracle acquired data management provider Blue Kai; Adobe bought conversational marketing company Neolane; and AOL snatched up content optimization startup Gravity. Facebook is now planning a mobile ad network to help marketers target people across mobile apps and games. Marketo partnered with Acxiom to launch a new customer engagement platform.

Why is the marketing cloud getting all of the attention now? Because the Holy Grail of marketing—omnichannel marketing—has never been more important, or more possible. Omnichannel marketing is a fancy term for reaching the right customer with the right message at the right time, across ALL channels.

The driving force in this new marketing age are the customers, who now want to be treated electronically the way they would be if they walked into their favorite brick-and-mortar stores. That means companies need to collect and use every available type of data—consumer behavior, location and type of device, alike—to not only report, but anticipate. It's like walking into your favorite bar, where you can either order "the usual," and they know what it is, or you can say, "surprise me," and they will. Favorably. Think of what kind of loyalty that would create if you could do it electronically.   

Right behind the need for greater personalization is mobile, which—for the purpose of this conversation—means recognizing what device your customer is using to optimize in real-time his or her experience with your brand on that device.

And finally there is the much-ballyhooed "Internet of Things." There are two things I can say with certainty about the Internet of Things: 

  1. It's going to be here earlier than we think; and
  2. We have no idea what it's actually going to look like or how pervasive it's going to be.

That said, we'd better be as ready for it as we possibly can.

 

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