Nicole Bales, Group Head, Marketing and Creative Operations, APAC, The Wall Street Journal Barron’s Group
Technology is pervasive and is continuing to play an even more central role when it comes to marketing. According to the latest Gartner CMO Spend Survey, companies are spending 29 percent of their marketing budgets on martech—up from 22 percent in 2017—with 9 percent of CMOs claiming that “marketing innovation” will be a key part of their practice in 2019.
On a typical working day of driving advertising campaigns for our clients, I regularly juggle multiple techplatforms including Slack, Gmail and Google Cloud, DocSend, Adobe Creative Suite, Basecamp and Salesforce—and across multiple devices. In addition, Dow Jones has several proprietary data and adtech platforms that allow us to find insights and produce creative ideas for our client campaigns. Particularly in the news and information business, the tools that we use must lead to greater efficiency rather than adding layers of complexity and fragmentation to our workloads, which would only slow us down.
An incredibly powerful data resource that we have at Dow Jones is Factiva, which aggregates over 30,000 news sources into a single platform, overlaying intelligence to the campaigns we create. In addition, we’ve developed a proprietary tool called DASH, which provides data insights on consumer behavior and allows us to learn much more about our audiences.We know that our advertising customers expect transparency on how their campaigns perform; real-time access to data; best-in-class user engagement; speedy technology and flexible data visualization options.
Technology in marketing and advertising should ultimately help to ensure that we are reaching, acquiring, and retaining the right customers
DASH provides all this by consolidating data in one platform, offering greater oversight and better campaign reporting.
We have also launched a tool to improve our ad campaign delivery. The technology identifies an area of concern, such as a placement that never ran or one that is under-delivering, and sends daily alerts to our sales planning team via Slack. This enables us to enhance ad performance across the network as we are aligning messaging through optimization and ensuring the best return on investment and conversion for our clients.
The Customer-Centric Model
Technology in marketing and advertising should ultimately help to ensure that we are reaching, acquiring, and retaining the right customers.
As WSJ is a membership business, it’s critical that we have a clear view of our customers’ interests, their propensity to churn or, for new customers, to subscribe. We constantly look at user interactions and journeys, and we can act on immediate insights with the right content or offers that can be personalized, making them more likely to hit the mark.
The intersection between martech and adtech is an increasingly talked about subject—and one in which that I see many benefits. Leveraging customer data and insights through martech platforms and combining them with the right adtech to serve ads in an informed way ultimately leads to better results.
How businesses synchronize their chosen tools to create the most insightful view of the customer will be key to succeeding. The industry needs to be looking at open frameworks that allow marketers to better realize their investments in technology and media, particularly when it comes to data.
Customertech Democratizes Data
The continued merger of adtech and martech represents a desire to unify strategies across all customer touchpoints and to deliver personalized engagement. In addition, we are seeing a new kind of ‘tech’ developing—that of ‘customertech’—which brings together the best of adtech and martech capabilities and gives power back to the customer to control the data and build out their own profiles. With consumers increasingly demanding power over their data, and regulations only increasing, customertech represents an exciting democratization of marketing for both consumers and businesses, alike.