The Tech You Have to See
Whittling down the thousands of MarTech offerings to a single-digit listing of the hottest, most memorable platforms was difficult. But it was fun, considering the variety — from nascent data-driven software providers to Pinterest — that benefited from the bounty of $134 billion in funding distributed from 2010 to 2015, according to VentureBeat.
Target Marketing had a little help with this list from Kelly Ford Buckley, CMO and partner at Edison Partners, a Princeton, N.J.-based VC and private equity firm with extensive investments in the marketing technology space (Edison funded the startups it lists here during 2015 or 2016.)
Additionally, attending events like the The Marketing Nation Summit in Las Vegas in early May (just before host Marketo announced it would be acquired by Vista Equity Partners for nearly $1.8 billion) didn’t hurt, considering the quality of exhibitors showing off their capabilities at these events.
We found the rest of the MarTech on our own. It’s only a coincidence that a few of them are in and around Philadelphia, where we have our home office.
Atlanta-based B-to-B company Terminus makes a product that’s “revolutionary,” says Ford Buckley, but it’s pioneering by doing ABM “through a SaaS platform, from a data and workflow perspective. As more and more marketing activities take over the roles once executed by sales resources, Terminus is strategically positioned to monetize the shift in buying behavior within the enterprise to accelerate pipeline velocity and improve sales productivity. Over 65 percent of buying decisions are made in today’s B-to-B sales cycle before a sales resource is contacted. The emphasis on relevant content marketing and personalized information through the buyer and customer journeys are fundamental to sales success and measuring the CMO suite, yet a very hard problem to solve at-scale with today’s incumbent MarTech solutions. Terminus is solving for this.”
Content and Creative
Video should be as easy as using Word or sending an email, says Alvin Hung, founder and CEO of GoAnimate, in a 2015 interview with ijinsight.com. So the company he set up in 2007 creates amusing, cartoon-like business videos with the slogan: “Making a Video Shouldn’t Be a Drag. It Should Be ‘Drag and Drop.’”
Headquartered in San Mateo, Calif., the startup has been growing “significantly” since its 2011 partnership with YouTube. Marketers can create not-so-boring training videos, pleas for startup money from venture
capitalists or whatever they like from the “libraries with thousands of characters, backgrounds, props, music tracks and sound effects. [Marketers] can import … audio, image, video or flash files.”
The right tool can turn video viewers into customers. Tyler Lessard — CMO of Kitchener, Ontario-based Vidyard — says the video intelligence platform tracks “who’s watching which videos, how long they are engaging, and [exposes] those insights to marketing and sales. Vidyard helps you turn passive video content into active tools for lead generation, customer insights, sales enablement and audience intelligence.”
Lessard says the tool is different from the rest because, “With individual viewer tracking across all distribution channels and rich integrations across marketing automation, social media management, CRM, communications and business analytics platforms, only Vidyard helps you track the video viewing activities of buyers throughout the entire customer lifecycle, use those insights to improve marketing and sales performance, and report on the true ROI of video investments. Vidyard also offers the most extensive portfolio of tools to help marketing and sales teams increase engagement and conversion rates, including split testing, personalized video, content sharing from Gmail/Outlook/Salesforce, real-time notifications on viewing activities and more.”
LookBook of Toronto may have unanimous support as a hot/cool technology due to its content marketing automation platform that bends to the whims of consumers.
The company touts itself as accommodating bulk content consumption.
“Just as TV viewers ‘binge-watch’ their favorite shows, your engaged prospects want to consume more content right now. In fact, when provided with multiple content assets, 33 percent of LookBookHQ visitors will consume more than one piece of content in a single session.”
What differentiates the tech from its competition is LookBook focuses “exclusively on what happens after someone clicks,” CEO Mark Opauszky told Target Marketing at The Marketing Nation Summit in May. Whether the click is on an email, ad or social post, LookBook monitors their attention to the content and applies the knowledge (how long they read, how deep into the content they go, whether they bounce) to how sales-ready the leads are, he says.
This Conshohocken, Pa.-based company is all about TV viewing attribution, according to Ford Buckley. “Although much of TV consumption has shifted online, television is still widely recognized as the most influential form of media. However, unlike Web advertising, where performance can be clearly understood, it’s particularly challenging for marketers to understand the impact of television across paid, earned and owned marketing initiatives.
“TV attribution has historically been stove-piped (i.e., not integrated with online, phone or social behavior), with correlation generally triggered off of TV ratings. However, we know that uniform TV ratings aren’t all that instructive. It’s the same way that a display ad on the main page of a highly trafficked website depends on the fit with the audience, and why companies like Magnetic, TripleLift, Pixability and RealMatch are so powerful. Not all mentions are created equal; this company helps to separate performance by attribution.”
Ford Buckley says this company headquartered in Philadelphia (known as LeadiD until June 29, the day it got $10 million in Series B funds) “allows marketers to optimize their in-house analytics, lead generation and consumer retention programs.”
Jornaya’s lead audit technology and intent solutions route “marketers and publishers through its verification technology (the LeadiD),” she explains. By “collecting and being an eyewitness to consumer interaction data across more than 24,000 publisher websites, it enables lead certification and high-resolution visibility into the entire consumer journey and purchase cycle. Four data products sit on top of this proprietary data network: Jornaya Intelligence, Jornaya Predict, Consumer Intent and TCPA Guardian.”
PebblePost of New York unites the online and offline worlds by sending retargeted ads via postcards to consumers who last viewed something similar online. It’s a direct-mailed retargeted display ad, in a solution PebblePost calls “Programmatic Direct Mail.”
It’s “the first ad server for tangible media,” the company says. Use it for remarketing, acquisition, prospecting or brand awareness, and the software can change the postcards. Mailings can also vary based on events, such as “page visits, searches and other events — like cart abandonment.” In addition to event capture, marketers can access campaign management, an address graph, dynamic production, real-time analytics and continuous optimization.
While Livingston, Mont.-based PrintingForLess.com has been around since 1996 and, as such, claims to be “the nation’s first e-commerce commercial printer,” it’s kept up with the times and marketing automation. Its service emphasizes high-impact, “dimensional” mailpieces that can be automatically sent to high-value clients and prospects based on triggers in your CRM or automation platform. CrunchBase says: “PFL has extensive APIs, as well as integrations with Marketo, Salesforce Marketing Cloud [and] Oracle/Eloqua, which enable print/mail/product fulfillment to be natively integrated into marketing campaigns.”