Good morning, are you invested in augmented reality?

As accessibility improves and popularity grows among consumers, more brands are considering how to incorporate AR into their digital strategies. For many, the first question asked is “where do we start?”

Yesterday, the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) debuted Augmented Reality for Marketing, an IAB Playbook — a newly published, educational resource for advertisers and marketers. The playbook provides a framework for implementing AR and examines a variety of use cases from across different verticals.

Do you trust AI? A new report released at Pegaworld yesterday indicates that consumers lack trust in and understanding of the benefits of AI —  troubling findings for those investing in AI-enabled marketing strategies. According to the survey, only 40 percent of respondents agreed that AI has the potential to improve customer service, and less than one third felt comfortable with interacting with a business’s AI. Digital teams thinking about implementing AI should take these factors into consideration when developing strategies.

Scroll on to reading below for more, including your Pro Tip on account-based marketing strategies and funding news from Highspot, Kustomer and Firefly.

Jennifer Videtta,
Senior Editor

Pro Tip

Anticipate potential problems before rolling out an ABM strategy

“In rolling out an ABM strategy, it’s important to anticipate pushback, as sales teams haven’t been used to working with marketing,” explains Jessica Fewless of Demandbase. “Don’t think of this pushback as objections, but instead, think of it as hesitation or unfamiliarity around a new way of doing things. It’s important to educate your team on the value of an account-based approach and build a strong foundation for moving forward on an ABM strategy.”

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Live Webinar: 4 Steps to Operationalize Modern Marketing Work - June 11

Sponsored by Workfront

Figuring out the right balance between work to be done, when it should be prioritized and which limited resources to use, can be one of marketing’s biggest challenges. Modern marketing work requires modern workflows, and operationalizing those workflows is critical to be effective and scale your resources with the amount of work you’re expected to do. Join our experts as they discuss proven methods and strategies to help your team manage digital work processes with greater speed and efficiency.

Read More »

MarTech Minute

Investors bet big on customer service and sales tech platforms

Highspot gets $60M. The sales enablement platform Highspot has received $60 million in series D funding, bringing the total amount raised by the Seattle-based startup to $124 million. The funding was led by ICONIQ Capital, with investments from Sapphire Ventures, Madrona Venture Group, OpenView, Salesforce Ventures and Shasta Ventures. Highspot said it expects to grow its 200-person staff to 300 by the end of the year, and has recently opened an office in London. CEO Robert Wahbe told Geekwire that the deal took less than two weeks to complete, “We could have started by Monday at 9 a.m. and been done by Monday at 5 p.m., but we wanted to run a more disciplined fundraise.”

Kustomer gets $40M. Kustomer, a SaaS platform for enterprise customer service needs, has received $40 million in series D funding led by Tiger Global Management, with help from Battery Ventures. The company said the financing will go toward its automated intelligence technology and to help it maintain its lead in the industry. “We are excited to continue to accelerate our growth and bring increasingly intelligent and differentiated solutions to our customers,” said CEO Brad Birnbaum. The $40 million investment brings Kustomer’s full funding to $113.5 million.

Firefly gets $30M with help from GV. Firefly, an ad tech platform that lets Uber, Lyft and other ride-service drivers earn ad revenue by installing digital smart screens that run targeted, geofenced ads, has raised $30 million in series A funding. This follows a seed funding round the company received six months ago totalling $21.5 million. GV (formerly Google Ventures) led the latest round of funding with help from NFX. “Firefly is creating a significant new ad format at scale,” said GV’s Adam Ghobarah. Firefly is about to open operations in NYC and is acquiring the digital operations of Strong Outdoor, an OOH ad company.

What we're reading

We've curated our picks from across the web so you can retire your feed reader

The Blurred Lines Of AdTech And MarTech Convergence – Forbes

Marketing to Open Source Communities – CMS Wire

Semiotics in Marketing: What It Means for Your Brand and Messaging – ConversionXL

Progressing from One-Way Notifications to Two-Way Conversations – UX Matters

The Need for Speed on Your Ecommerce Website – Multichannel Merchant

How to bring your marketing mix modeling into the 21st century – Think with Google

Aion Network introduces first blockchain virtual machine for Java developers – TechCrunch