CMO's top 10 martech stories for the week - 9 February 2017

All the latest martech and adtech news from Hootsuite, Invigor, Data Republic, Domo, Rubicon Project, Integral Ad Science, Jive Software, BlueConic, Nielsen and AppNexus.

Hootsuite rounds out social ad play with AdEspresso

Social media management platform, Hootsuite, has acquired AdEspresso, a provider of Facebook and Instagram advertising solutions, for an undisclosed sum.

AdEspresso is a Facebook global ad partner and has built a SaaS-based advertising technology platform for the social media giant’s two core properties. According to a statement, AdEspresso grew 351 per cent on ad spend managed last year in the Asia-Pacific region.

Hootsuite said the deal sees the vendor sitting at the nexus of more than US$500m in annualised social spend, rounding out its ability to help brands engage with customers across paid, earned and owned social media. AdEspresso will continue as a self-service ads management product.

“Social advertising has become a vital aspect of marketing; companies are looking for ways to reach an active, engaged audience while getting more mileage from content and advertising spend,” said Hootsuite CEO, Ryan Holmes. “With AdEspresso, we’re bringing our users a simple, powerful, battle-tested solution that delivers measurable ROI.”

Alongside the purchase, Hootsuite also announced its new Hootsuite Ads offering this week, providing organisations with features and optimisation services aimed at improving social campaign performance. The new offering is based on AdEspresso’s ad optimisation technology.

Invigor launches market intelligence and price tracking solution

ASX-listed big data solutions company, Invigor Group, has gone into full-scale launch of its new market intelligence and price tracking solution, SpotLite.

The launch comes off the back of worldwide beta with high-profile brands such as Dyson Australia, Asus Brazil and Kogan. SpotLite is applicable to retailers and brands of multiple industries, sizes and geographies and includes features such as customisable dynamic dashboards, real-time price alerts, and personalised email reporting.

Invigor expects to generate in excess of $1 million in annualised revenue in first 12 months.

“With our Insights Retail platform and now SpotLite, we can deliver the very best SaaS-based market intelligence solutions to a broad target market – from large organisations through to the high volume SME market – a huge future revenue pool that we are now tapping,” said Invigor chairman and CEO, Gary Cohen.

“Particularly noteworthy are some of the endorsements we have received for SpotLite. One beta test customer, Asus Brazil, has quickly realised the benefits of SpotLite with the data generated on its products and competitor products facilitating rapid tactical decisions with their sales and marketing initiatives.”

Aussie startup joins Microsoft Accelerator Program

Social content generation platform, kwickie, claims it is the first Australian startup to be accepted into Microsoft UK’s Accelerator Program.

Kwickie competed against hundreds of later-stage startups for the opportunity to participate in the program, and is one of eight granted entry. The program runs for four to six months.

The smart phone app focuses on asynchronous video messaging and creates video content from video-based conversations between users. Users have included England cricket captain, Kevin Pieterson, who used the platform recently to respond to negative comments about his performance in the Australian Big Bash League.

The partnership with Microsoft will help open doors to world-class expertise, knowledge and networks, kwickie founder and CEO, Jacob Gough, said.

“Having Microsoft on our side is an obvious win. We’re growing rapidly with our Australian, US and UK teams and this announcement will only further fuel our growth plans” he said.

Data Republic joins forces with CoreLogic, koji

Data marketplace provider, Data Republic, has struck a data contribution partnership with CoreLogic, aimed at opening fresh opportunities for marketers of participating organisations to better leverage property intent insights.

The new partnership means CoreLogic, which collects and maintains Australia’s up-to-date property and mortgage database featuring over 4 billion decision property decision points, would be able to list and exchange data via Data Republic’s Open Data Marketplace.

“The immense scale and reach of the CoreLogic property data unlocks so many possibilities for participating organisations in our ecosystem,” Data Republic’s head of commercial, Steve Millward, said. “We know that property data can be a potent life-event indicator for consumer marketers so the opportunity to marry-up data from CoreLogic with financial, retail, online, automotive and life-stage datasets from our other Data Contributors is particularly exciting. This could open up entirely new ways for marketers to leverage property intent insights.

Data Republic also launched a new data-as-a-service offering this week, offering insights-driven snapshots aimed at making grocery and liquor basket insights more accessible to brand marketers. The new offering is the result of a partnership with market research firm, koji.

Read our full story on the new FMCG aimed offering here.

Domo expands Australian and regional presence

Business workflow management vendor, Domo, has opened its second office in Melbourne, an expansion it says will help support growing customer numbers across the Asia-Pacific and Japan region.

The new Melbourne location is the third office across the region, alongside Sydney and Japan, and will be overseen by Domo APJ VP and general manager, Paul Harapin. In a statement, Harapin claimed it had been a bumper 12 months for Domo, with more than 100 per cent growth.

“This growth is testament to Domo’s value proposition which has really resonated amongst those businesses in the region. We are seeing demand from established multinationals to disruptive startups, who want a more intuitive and immediate way of turning the data surrounding them into actionable market opportunities,” he said.

Rubicon Project and Integral Ad Science partner on video viewability scores

Rubicon Project has teamed up with Integral Ad Science to take yet another step towards better viewability metrics for programmatic advertising.

The have will now provide advertisers with third-party viewability scores for display and video advertising and the individual ad placement levels. The new scores will be delivered within the auction bid request, a move aimed at helping advertisers make more informed decisions about both forms of placements in real time.

They’re open to IAS clients and partners on both desktop and mobile Web and based on IAS’s MRC accredited viewability solution, Rubicon Project’s global premium publisher catalogue and the IAB’s new OpenRTB 2.5 metric object to reveal in the bid request how well each individual ad placement is positioned on the page for the consumer to see it.

“Armed with placement-level predictive viewability scores, media buyers in the Rubicon Project marketplace can make better informed pricing decisions, establish accurate performance measurements, and execute increasingly sophisticated strategies,” claimed said IAS VP of product management, David Marquard. “Our data will also empower publishers to use viewability as a selling point including – in the near future -- packaging and merchandising high performing inventory more effectively on Rubicon Project’s industry-leading Orders platform.”

Jive Software reports full-year results

Jive Software, which provides business collaboration software, says transformation work undertaken in 2016 not only helped deliver strong end-of-year results, it’s also the foundation for growth this year.

The company reported total revenue of US$204.1 million in 2017, an increase of 4 per cent year-on-year, with product revenue representing $187.3m of that sum. Gross profit was $136.7m over the full year, up from $123.6m in 2015, while the net loss was $14m.

Jive Software CEO, Elisa Steele, said the results exceeded expectations, particularly in the fourth quarter. She said the team was confident it had now stabilised the business and had the foundations for growth.

“Based on the transformation work we did in 2016 to realign the company, we are strategically poised for success as we enter 2017,” she said. “We have made great strides in our operational excellence initiatives, and have positioned Jive’s unique value proposition in the market to solve the growing problems of digital fragmentation across the enterprise workplace.”

BlueConic adds recommendations engine

Customer data platform provider, BlueConic, has added a recommendations engine into its offering, designed to help marketers deliver relevant content and product recommendations to customers in real time.

The new feature automatically collects all profile, content and statistics data based on tags, and uses Apache Spark big data processing technology and machine learning to come up with real-time recommendations off the back of it. These recommendations can then be used across channels and devices to serve up content and product suggestions to consumers.

The vendor claims trial customers had seen between 30 and 50 per cent higher clickthrough rates against other recommendation tools in the market.

“Companies are seeking more effective ways to connect with and engage with consumers, as online competition grows daily,” said BlueConic founder and CEO, Bart Heilbron. “Recommendations for a single person challenges the industry standard in order to help marketers increase customer loyalty and sales. BlueConic has developed an incredibly easy way to integrate high-value recommendations into existing marketing processes and campaigns.”

Nielsen brings on RichRelevance to bolster Marketing Cloud

Nielsen has integrated its Marketing Cloud platform with RichRelevance, a move it says it about enabling retailers to deliver more personalised ecommerce experiences.

The integration allows mutual clients of Nielsen Marketing Cloud and RichRelevance to use the research firm’s Data Management Platform (DMP) and Nielsen cross-device audience data, which covers demographics, interest and intent, to make decisions on tailored onsite and in-app experiences. This includes which content and product recommendations to serve up consumers along the path to purchase.

“Working with RichRelevance, we are helping retail clients leverage deep, people-based insights to make shopping experiences across online and mobile commerce more relevant for their customers,” said Nielsen president, lead market, Karen Fichuk. “This should have a big impact on retail customer acquisition and retention efforts, effectively increasing lifetime value with the best data, technology and analytics available.”

AppNexus ramps up publisher deals

Programmatic adtech player, AppNexus, said it signed more than 260 publishers globally to its partner network during 2016, including Australia’s News Corp.

The list in Australia also includes eBay and The Guardian Australia, while Nine Entertainment expanded its partnership to include the AppNexus Ad Server and Yieldex Analytics. Globally, recent publisher additions include Gannett, Mashable, Slate, Genius, Bauer Xcel Media, Match Group, Resignation Media and Patch Media. AppNexus’ platform provides ad serving, forecasting and analytics functionality.

“We’re proud to be the leading monetization partner for the world’s independent publishers,” said AppNexus president, Michael Rubenstein, said.

“In an environment where just two media companies – Facebook and Google – command over half of incremental digital advertising dollars, it’s critically important that publishers regain parity by harnessing the power of machine learning and transacting in an open and transparent advertising marketplace. That’s where AppNexus fits in.”

  • With additional reporting by Azadeh Williams

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