Good morning, hope you were able to take some time for yourself this weekend.

We usually jump right into the latest martech news, but I’m guessing most of us are not doing things the “usual” way right now. Last week, we started adding a Mindful Moment section to our newsletter, encouraging everyone to take a meditative breath throughout the day. The response has been very inspiring, and we’re grateful for the tips you guys have shared with us. We’re going to keep including our Mindful Moment section below until it no longer feels necessary. My inbox is open if you have any breathing exercises, mediation tips or mindful practices that have worked for you in recent days: agesenhues@thirddoormedia.com.  

We do still have martech on the mind. Last month, WPP, the holding company that includes multiple agencies and networks like Oglivy, GroupM and Kantar, said it plans to train 50,000 of its employees on AI during the next two years — and accredit 5,000 data scientists, engineers and creative technologists in the key marketing technologies. 

WPP’s CTO Stephan Pretorius told me the company’s AI skills development program is very exciting and spans executive education. “It takes some passionate, dedicated people to plan and roll out these programs, but most importantly, it requires curious and open-minded employees with a hunger for learning,” said Pretorius. 

To meet its massive AI training goals, WPP is currently developing a graduate diploma with Oxford Saïd Business School and has partnered with General Assembly to create a data science academy. It also designed an AI Demystified course in-house for non-technical staff. 

We have more for you below, including a Soapbox from our very own SVP of Marketing Marc Sirkin on how COVID-19 is changing things and news from RevTrax which is offering a free version of its platform for 60-days. 

Amy Gesenhues, 
Senior Editor

 
 
 
Soapbox
 

Does COVID-19 change everything?

Every fiber in my being wants to lay down and watch Netflix all day. The disruption we are facing is overwhelming, and how we navigate matters.

I’m seeing a lot of people post on social media about how COVID-19 changes everything. I know I’m not alone wondering what will be left with when the virus finally subsides. Will life return to what it was? Will everything be normal again? Will my retirement fund bounce back? I wish I knew.

But what if those are the wrong questions? After all, wasn’t business already moving at lightning speed? What happened to AI and blockchain upending and disrupting everything? Ah yes, those were simpler times.

This is also an important time to take stock about how business will be reshaped in the short and long term. Not just marketing.

Short term, the cards will fall where they may. Unemployment will spike (it already has). Companies will fail or falter (they already are). Things will be nuts for a while (we all feel it, don’t we?). And the constantly changing situation has us running in circles trying to find ways to make our work (if we are still employed) relevant in these times of uncertainty.

My question is more long term. Will people return to their old patterns, or has everything indeed, changed? Will industry rebound? Will my e-mail marketing trigger campaigns once again earn 50%+ open rates? Will we ever shake hands again?

Take a moment to recognize we’re in crisis. You are allowed. We all are.

But take note of the opportunity facing you because regardless of how “everything will change” or not, what you do in the next day, week, and months to come will define your future.

Crisis or opportunity – you choose.

Marc Sirkin is Third Door Media’s SVP Marketing & Experience 

Soapbox is a special feature for marketers in our community to make an observation or share their perspectives. You can submit your own here.

 

How to adapt your marketing in the consumer privacy era

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Mindful Moment
 

We’ll be sharing daily mindfulness exercises to help us all take some time to decompress. If you have a suggestion, please email gmarvin@thirddoormedia.com

Jenni Kulp, digital marketing strategist/owner at digital advertising agency Digitable, sent us this excellent suggestion: “When you have a moment of negativity or sadness, list (or think of if you don’t have paper) 10 things you are thankful for. The first 3-5 things are usually easy. But the last 5 things usually make you think a little deeper and appreciate more that life isn’t so bad.”

 
MarTech Minute
 

RevTrax lends a hand to businesses facing revenue drops, Nuvi launches social tools suite

REV IT UP. RevTrax, an offer management solution for revenue teams, is making its data services platform free for 60 days. The tool is used by various industries, including CPG, retail, travel, financial services and automotive, to manage customer pricing and discounting strategies — helping companies avoid unnecessary price drops or over-discounting products and services when consumer demand or sales dip. Why we care: Many SMB CMOs who manage business revenue initiatives — or work with the CFO to keep revenue flows in place — are facing massive sales declines right now, especially those in the travel and hospitality space. Putting in place a data services tech platform that could help mitigate over-reactions around price drops and product discounts is a valuable resource as we face unprecedented financial challenges. Source: RevTrax

SOCIALLY ACCEPTABLE SOLUTIONS. Social management and analytics platform Nuvi has released a series of customer experience tools that include social listening, planning, publishing and engagement solutions. There is also a new Language Engine feature that enables marketers to predict consumer sentiment based on eleven language factors across millions of online resources. Why we care: Now more than ever, it’s important for marketers to keep a close eye on their social efforts, as well as commit to social listening initiatives. As more consumers practice social distancing, online conversations will likely see a significant uptick during the coronavirus outbreak. Marketers adept at monitoring online conversations and tracking consumer sentiment are less likely to release tone-deaf messaging that could sink a brand’s reputation. Source: Nuvi 

 

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There’s nothing like curling up with a good book — or good Marketing Intelligence Report — when you’re stuck inside. The 8th Edition of MarTech Today’s B2B Marketing Automation Platforms guide is an insightful and informative read that will help you understand what these platforms offer and how they can help your business.

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What we're reading
 

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

Bringing User Experience Metrics Into DevOps Development – CMS Wire

Remote work during coronavirus outbreak puts millions more on Microsoft Teams, Slack – Reuters

Tech companies could face more pressure to share location data with governments to fight coronavirus – The Verge

Local Advertising in the Time of Social Distancing – Street Fight

UserTesting raises $100 million to grow its on-demand user feedback platform globally – VentureBeat

Citing COVID-19, Trade Groups Ask California’s Attorney General To Delay Data Privacy Enforcement – Forbes