Good morning, Marketers, is there a right way to buy marketing technology? 

The short answer is a resounding “yes,” according to  MarTech West speaker and industry analyst Tony Byrne. During the twenty years Byrne has spent evaluating martech platforms and vendors, he’s seen plenty of decision-makers get it wrong.

“You can’t blame those decision-makers,” writes Byrne. “Marketers in particular face intense time pressures and can’t readily find good templates for doing this right. Stress around making a poor choice sometimes leads to ill-advised short-cuts or paralyzing over-analysis.”

Byrne recommends that martech stakeholders look for the “best-fitting” solution rather than the “best.” This methodology, known as “design thinking” takes a human-centered, story-based approach to decision-making process and vetting martech vendors.

We have much more below, including a Soapbox on using the arts and science of marketing to find balance. Live long and prosper. 

Jennifer Cannon
Senior Editor

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Let’s prove to Star Trek Picard that ads don’t have to annoy

Trekkies are thrilled they have Sir Patrick Stewart’s Jean-Luc back in Star Trek Picard. Like any good sci-fi, the show is far more about the present than it is about the future, and it was amusing to see a scene from the recent episode “Stardust City Rag.”

Picard and company visited the Las Vegas-like planet Freecloud. As they arrive, each person receives their own personalized holographic ad. The ads are personalized and apparently have great engagement. Captain Rios gets an ad for ship repair. Picard gets one for great tea at a hotel. Raffi gets one for sketchy drugs. All things are applicable to them.

Each ad requires interaction, and in the case of the show’s characters, they flick and push away their ads. The ads come across as obnoxious; none of the characters were thrilled about what was served to them. Clearly, the showrunners are mocking some (hopefully, not all) contemporary digital marketing.

This is where we need to use the art and science of marketing to find balance. Many marketers have stated that bad customer experience or user experience can, at times, yield success. Perhaps subpar experiences get people’s attention and engagement. That’s certainly counterintuitive. Having said that, that’s not a license to annoy.

We should aim to find ways to garner high conversion rates without always relying upon gimmickry. It’s easier and cheaper to use spectacle than to focus on developing quality products, services and experiences. Aiming for great engagement and conversions should not come at the expense of longer-term goals in earning the trust and appreciation from loyal customers. Going forward, we need to prove the Star Trek Picard team wrong.

Steve Petersen is a marketing technology manager at Western Governors University.

Soapbox is a special feature for marketers in our community to share their observations and opinions about our industry. Submit your own here >>


The New Customer Engagement Model: How to adapt your marketing in the consumer privacy era

The rules of marketing continue to change – especially in light of data measures like the CCPA and Apple ITP. Consumers now expect privacy-oriented marketing from all brands. Fail to adjust to their privacy preferences, and you’ll undoubtedly see a negative impact on your bottom line. This eBook from BlueConic outlines what your organization must do today to thrive in the increasingly data-conscious, constantly evolving marketing landscape.

Read More »

MarTech Minute

New report details DMARC results, Adobe adds integration with Gmail

FIGHTING FRAUD. A new study from Valiamil on DMARC usage and success found that spoof attempts drop to nearly zero “within a few months after that domain moves to DMARC enforcement.” Nearly 80% of inboxes worldwide and almost all U.S. email providers use machine learning to analyze DMARC policies of incoming email, generally enforcing whatever policy was laid out by the owner of the domain. Why we care: Thousands of domain owners haven’t configured enforcement policies, which dictates how many inboxes handle an email. If your DMARC policies are not being enforced, inboxes could be rejecting or quarantining your emails. Source: Valimail

A CREATIVE CONNECTION. Adobe and Google Cloud have announced a joint effort to increase share accessibility to creative assets through email. The G Suite add-on will give Adobe users access to apps such as Creative Cloud directly from Gmail and can be used on any device. Why we care. Tasks like sharing links to creative assets with external teams or stakeholders can create headaches. Cloud solutions and collaboration tools might be all the rage right now, but email remains at the heart of how companies operate. New integrations like this only prove that email is evolving — not dead. Source: Adobe


Connect with leading brands & top marketers at MarTech

Top brands like IBM, Verizon, and Yelp are sending their senior-level marketers to MarTech, April 15-17 in San Jose, to learn actionable tactics and proven strategies that can help them overcome universal marketing obstacles. This is your chance to connect with driven professionals from elite brands.

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What we're reading

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

Don’t Get Trapped by Data When Designing Your Brand Experience  – CMS Wire

Using AI To Identify Your Best Customers In The Future – Forbes

ANA: Marketing’s data-driven potential at risk if educational skills gap persists – Marketing Dive

Researchers’ state-of-the-art AI upscales and enhances videos – VentureBeat

Publishers Are Wary Of New Tech That Wants To Use Their First-Party Cookies – AdExchanger

Valued at $30bn, Waymo considers its next move – Financial Times