Understanding the Evolution of Martech in 2020 – MarTech Advisor

Posted: March 22, 2020 at 9:52 pm


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With the start of the new decade, marketers and technologists alike have both an opportunity and a challenge to help brands optimize their data in a new era of customer service.

Each year, leaders across industries reveal their predictions about how technology will influence the marketing landscape, making the beginning of this new decade the perfect opportunity to pause and reflect on the not-sao-distant past.

Winning CX will come from Brands who can balance relevance, consistency and convenience to drive engagement. The kind of engagement that drives optimal customer lifetime value and real business impact.

Historically, predictions have promised major breakthroughs in everything from emerging realities to artificial intelligence and smart mobile devices. However, I believe organizations will experience an unprecedented realignment of the fundamentals across industries this decade, particularly in marketing technology. In an era where shareholder value is no longer everything, and customer experience continues to be a leading driver of business results, this shift will be integral to success.

We see a glimpse into how businesses can prepare for this changing landscape in Fjords Trends 2020 report. In this years outlook, Fjord Accenture Interactives design arm includes three emerging trends that I see as most relevantfor businesses in 2020, as were in a critical position to help organizations and investors provide exceptional customer experiences.

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Today, organizations are under tremendous pressure to redefine their successes outside of financial performance. In my experience, success no longer solely equates to growth; organizations must start reassessing corporate purpose and recalibrate how they see their role in the world to survive.

Outlined as the Many Faces of Growth, this trendreminds us that we have a responsibility to help organizations react to investors, customers and employers when navigating changing societal values, concerns about climate change and economic and political instability to name a few.

Todays leading brands are using data to not only make relationships with customers more relevant and useful, but more meaningful, too. Theyre creating experienceswith a purpose and learning where to draw the line between invasive and inventive.

This idea reminds me of a few key findings we discovered in Accenture Interactives 2019 Consumer Pulse Survey:See People, Not Patterns, in which we surveyed over 8,000 consumers globally. We found that 93% of consumers agree its important that every interaction they have with a brand is excellent, whenever or wherever they happen in the decision to purchase from a brand, while 87% of consumers think its important to purchase from brands that understand the real them.

The good news is that there is a big opportunity for brands to take a thoughtful approach not only in the use of data usage through personalization but in creating impactful experiences at the intersection of purpose and innovation. Whether its working with retailers to use materials and dies that are better for the environment or helping quick serve restaurants reduce food waste or partnering with the local government to create smart cities and increase speed of first responders in a crisis, creating experience with purpose build the trust and emotional connection customers crave and help improve peoples lives.

Consumption habits are rapidly evolving as people continue to redefine their identity in more ways than one. As a result, organizations need to take a proactive approach to understand the complex layers of their audiences, leveraging those insights to create more personalized experiences for all.

According to a recent Gartner CMO Spend Survey, marketing technology consumed nearly a third of marketing budgets, making this segment the largest area of investment for marketing resources and programs. Based on the survey, CMOs spent an average of 25 percent of their marketing technology budget on three channels: search (11.2 percent), email (5.9 percent), and website (7.6 percent). Marketing and customer analytics platforms accounted for 8.9 percent, indicating the need for measurement tools and processes to continue supporting these programs.

With this in mind, Ive noticed something contradictory: people still want to consume products, but dont want those products to define who they are their expectations are truly fluid.

Consumers are on a quest to show who they are without pointing to their possessions or what they do for a living. Consequently, organizations need to gain a deeper understanding of the people they serve and in some case redefine that understanding to accomplish a greater sense of relevance, across touchpoints.

Ive also seen a growing number of people becoming more conscious consumers, usually to support a cause whether the planet or society resulting in added pressure for businesses to follow suit. For example, Brazilian start-up Beleaf, formerly known as Vegan J, is one of several plant-based food companies around the world to change its name to broaden its appeal to meat-eaters. In the U.S., around 95% of people buying from meat alternative food business, Impossible Foods, are ironically meat-eaters. Vegan is now the fastest-growing food takeaway in the UK, and recent YouGov research suggests a conscious flexitarian diet could soon become the countrys norm.

Similarly, Millennials and Gen Z two of the biggest buying demographics are fondest of personalization. Yet in contrast to their predecessors, Gen Z has a completely different set of considerations for making buying decisions. As the Gen Z population increases, customized advertising is going to become increasingly inevitable, given the need for smarter audience management strategies and increased segmenting and targeting. To achieve this, brands should not only focus on consumers experiences at every interaction during the customer journey, from websites and mobile apps to brick-and-mortar stores but also the consumers intent and context. For example, I have very different needs when I travel for business versus travel with my family on vacation. Context matters.

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Were leaving a physical cookie trail as we move around our cities with widespread facial and body language recognition capabilities on the rise. As machines get more sophisticated at reading our physical features, our bodies are increasingly becoming our signature as the line between privacy and convenience becomes blurred. I believe it is our obligation to use data responsibly, while learning from it to aid future costumer interactions.

Forrester defines omnichannel marketing as the practice of digitally sequencing advertising across channels, which is connected, relevant, and consistent with the customers stage in their life cycle. As such, living services sophisticated, contextually-aware and digital will continue to become the norm across the marketing technology ecosystem.

In fact, across industries, this is already the norm. UK health start-up Babylon for example, combines Artificial Intelligence (AI) with peoples medical expertise to deliver improved access to healthcare. AI initially helps to identify a patients condition, then assesses their reaction to help gauge whether they fully understand the advice they receive.

Yet responsible data usage, also continues to blur the lines. Several Amazon smart products for example, including Echo Frames (smart glasses) and Echo Loop (a portable smart ring that can make phone calls), have sparked privacy debates and exemplify how living services are becoming intertwined into society.

Despite the cookie trail, transparency continues to reign. Our recent survey also found that around 73% of consumers are willing to share more personal information if brands are transparent about how it is used, up from 66% in 2018. The changing landscape represents an opportunity for brands that provide consumers with value for their data, while simultaneously ensuring the brand wont lose or abuse their data and recognize consumers in a way that puts them at ease.

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Brands are a set of promises and the way those promises are kept are in the experiences they deliver. Systemic complexities ranging from economics and politics to technology and more rapidly changing society raise new challenges but its clear organizations have a unique opportunity to innovate with purpose and create experiences backed by new business models, services and products as they redefine value in the decade ahead.

When organizations adapt to an experience-led approach, marketers and technologists are not only helping brands be present across touchpoints such as smartphones, computers, digital assistants and TVs; theyre able to penetrate into a liquid experience ecosystem in a unified fashion that conveys a single meaningful brand narrative and ultimately deliver experiences that matter.

While the decade ahead will unearth new breakthroughs that will challenge consumer trust, growth models and expand the boundaries of personalization, something we know for sure is that organizations who embrace the long-term view by focusing on their societal impact at large while striving to empathize and help improve the lives of their customers will emerge as winners.

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Understanding the Evolution of Martech in 2020 - MarTech Advisor

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March 22nd, 2020 at 9:52 pm