CMO's top 8 martech stories for the week - 3 August 2017

All the latest martech and adtech news from Adobe, Mapp Digital, Zeta Global, Blis, AppNexus, [24]7, Dynamic Yield, DataXu and Placecast.

Adobe brings AI, fresh data smarts into Target 

Adobe is opening up data science and algorithmic optimisation in its Adobe Target offering as well as introducing new artificial intelligence capabilities into the personalisation platform.

On the list of new Adobe Sensei-powered functionality is one-click personalisation for auto-targeting across digital properties such as websites, apps and Internet of Things user interfaces, which determines the best experience for each consumer and continuously optimises as consumers interact with the brand. There’s also automated offers for enhanced decisioning, plus fresh integration across Adobe Target and Adobe Analytics Cloud allowing marketers to tap behaviour analytics and audience data for deeper segmentation.

The new data science optimisation capabilities, meanwhile, will allow brands to insert their own data models and algorithms into Adobe Target. The vendor claims these are a first in the marketing platform space.

“Consumer expectations have sky-rocketed to the point that hyper personalisation is no longer optional for brands, it’s imperative,” said Adobe Experience Manager and Adobe Target VP, Aseem Chandra. “Progressive brands are already developing proprietary algorithms. When integrated into Adobe Target, brands can combine their own expertise with the power of Adobe’s AI and machine learning tools to predict what customers want and deliver it before they ask, driving strong business value and brand loyalty.”

As an example, Adobe said a financial services company that created its own algorithm to predict which customers are most likely to respond to an offer can insert that algorithm into Adobe Target to test live traffic against the model to deliver the best possible offer to each customer.

Mapp Digital unveils first fully integrated stack

Just a year after spinning out as a new marketing technology player from the embers of Teradata’s Marketing Applications business, Mapp Digital has unveiled its first fully integrated product stack and services offering.

The new portfolio is the culmination of digital marketing technology acquired from Teradata Marketing Applications, Ozone Online, Apoxee, Argyle, FLXone, eCircle and BlueHornet. It includes a Customer Engagement Platform for streamlining insights around consumer and behavioural data, along with an integrated data management platform (DMP) and modular software suite for executing marketing across channels as well as digital display,

The company is also offering a Digital marketing services component aimed at helping brands optimise messaging across email, social, mobile push and Web marketing off the back of their underlying data platform.

Mapp Digital launched its new-look brand last September with a focus on digital marketing applications. The company is owned by private equity firm, Marlin Equity Partners, which purchased it, along with all of Teradata’s Marketing Applications business, for US$90 million in December 2015. Alongside that acquisition, Marlin picked up a number of other tech players in the market in order to round out its platform capabilities.

The marketing operations component of Teradata’s digital marketing business was spun out as a separate company at the same time and is known as Aprimo.

Mapp Digital claims to have more than 3000 customers globally including Thomas Cook, Lloyds Banking Group, Pepsi, Puma and Infinity, and is headquartered in San Diego in the US. Its CEO, Mike Biwer, said he was delighted to be launching the unified technology offering to market.

“Our comprehensive customer engagement platform enables our B2B and B2C clients to get to know their customers better over time, from their first contact to loyalty program participation,” he said. “Mapp is also pushing forward in developing new marketing functionality that marketers demand, such as predictive analytics and strategic reporting.”

Omnicom offers up location-based campaigns

Omnicom Media Group has launched a location-enabled, self-serve demand side platform (DSP) after striking a partnership with location technology player, Blis.

The two companies have spent the past year testing the proprietary platform, which is powered by Blis’ SmartPin, SmartScale and POI Database. The technology offering allows clients to access real-time and historical location data targeting solutions, supported by analytics such as footfall and heatmap reports, via a self-service interface.

Omnicom Media Group claimed it’s been able to provide 100 percent transparency, accuracy and reach, to its array of fortune 500 customers, including McDonald’s and P&G, over the course of the year and has now formalised the partnership with Blis.

The agency’s A/NZ CEO, Peter Horgan, said direct access to first-party location data has been a priority as Omnicom looks to improve its client offering. 

“Location data now plays a key role in how the group builds its campaigns, and the opportunity to get onto a self-operated platform has helped us get to grips with the intricacies of the location marketing arena,” he said. “OMG’s trading desk teams are getting ahead of the curve on location marketing now, and Blis should be credited for its platform’s advanced, market-defining features.”

Blis A/NZ MD, Nick Ballard, saw the platform’s testing in Australia as a sign of the growing prevalence of location data in media strategies across global markets.

“Australian clients are adventurous and results-driven, and our platform gives clients more opportunities to use location data how they want to. I think we’ll see this trend towards greater visibility and empowerment expanding globally from Australia.”

Zeta and AppNexus join forces for personalised onich-channel marketing

Customer lifecycle marketing vendor, Zeta Global, has teamed up with AppNexus to bring the latter’s programmatic ad technology into its marketing cloud.

The new deal is an example of martech and adtech coming together, and sees Zeta’s people-based marketing capabilities, which include a 350 million record signal database and machine learning, integrated with AppNexus and made available to existing clients on both sides. This will ensure Zeta’s CRM data can be used to address people in other channels such as email, digital and SMS.

“Our mission from the beginning has been to help CMOs solve their biggest challenges as they work to create, monetise and maintain customers,” said Zeta Global co-founder, chairman and CEO, David A. Steinberg. “The partnership with AppNexus strengthens our ability to extend the use of our signal database to the open Web.”

The partnership comes just weeks after Zeta acquired machine learning platform vendor, Boomtrain, its 10th acquisition in as many years.

[24]7 acquires KPMG’s customer journey analytics offering

[24]7 has acquired KPMG’s Australian grown customer journey analytics technology as part of efforts to more holistically address the customer experience management challenges brands face.

The vendor’s new Customer Journey Analytics platform was previously called Customer Compass and developed by KPMG Capital in Australia The acquisition also sees [24]7 picking up an experienced customer journey analyst team, providing the basis for a new consulting services offering.

The deal allows KPMG member firms to continue offering the technology to clients via a licensing or partnership agreement with [24]7, and also sees KPMG as a preferred supplier of advertising services for [24]7’s direct clients.

You can read our full report on the news here.

Dynamic Yield scores US$31m in additional funding

Website personalisation vendor, Dynamic Yield, has secured an extra US$9 million in its latest Series C funding round, bringing total investment up to US$31 million.

The round kicked off in December and raised the interest of new investors, Deutsche Telekom Capital Partners as well as La Maison. Other supporters include ClaITech, Baidu and Vertex. The funding will be used to help Dynamic Yield expand into Europe as well as grow its presence in China. In total, the company has raised $45m.

US-based Dynamic Yield has more than 100 enterprise clients globally including Sephora, Under Armour and Rolling Stone, and claims to be serving 500 million unique users per month. Its tools gather data from across multiple digital sources such as websites, mobile apps, email and online ads, then uses this to automatically tailor the content a customer sees based on their past purchases, browsing history and geographic location.

The company is working on launching new features by the end of the year to further automate the platform as well as data analysis. The group also recently established partnerships with 35 of the world’s agencies, consultancies and technology firms to extend its reach including Emarsys, Liquid Interactive, Magento, Rakuten and Sendgrid.

“The pressure on marketers to achieve strong conversion and revenue KPIs is ever increasing, but they rarely get the needed engineering resources to build, experiment and optimise their ideas,” said Dynamic Yield CEO and co-founder, Liad Agmon.

“We built the ultimate acceleration machine for marketers: A platform that connects their disparate data sources into a single machine-learning powered activation layer that works across Web, apps and emails. We continuously build new modules with one goal in mind: Help accelerate optimisation and personalisation initiatives for our global customer base.”

DataXu aims at breaking down the garden wall

Programmatic adtech vendor, DataXu, is looking to help advertisers get over the walled garden established by the likes of Facebook and Twitter with a new data activation offering.

According to the vendor, the new OneView solution aids brands with scaling the addressability of their first-party data by syndicating this to a range of third-party platforms for media activities.

As an example, the vendors said the solution allowed agency, Duncan Channon, to enrich and amplify and activate cookie-based, first-party data into other types of identifiers in order to syndicate results to Facebook and Instagram. As a result, the agency saw a three times increase in total addressable audience, 364 per cent more unique Instagram users and 44 per cent more efficient CPMs on Facebook.

“Walled gardens such as Twitter, Facebook and others increasingly present a challenge to marketers looking to leverage their own data in a more controlled way,” said DataXu SVP, product management, marketing and technical solutions, Aaron Kechley. “By using OneView as a pre-processing step before executing social media campaigns, brands and agencies are able to increase scale and efficiency simultaneously. This in turn dramatically increases the ROI potential of their first-party data.”

Placecast strives for location verification

Location-based marketing is also in the sights of US-based vendor, Placecast, which has launched a new location verification product for checking the accuracy of geo-targeted mobile ad campaigns.  

Location Verification has been described by the company’s CEO, Alistair Goodman, as the first industry truthset for scoring the accuracy of other data. The product is being managed by a new business unit with the vendor and was originally designed to help telco carriers with critical location data to help with ensuring calls were successfully passed from one cell tower to another.

Location Verification uses anonymised and aggregated carrier data from Sprint subsidiary, Pinsight Media, to confirm the location accuracy of mobile ads. Advertisers implement a standard tag into their location-aware mobile ad campaign. What Placecast then does is analyse that tag data to validate user location at the time an ad was served and provides a report with percentages of daily impressions that did or didn’t met the brand’s geo-targeting plans.

“Carrier data is a canonical truth data set that enables us to understand and score the accuracy of data in the mobile ad ecosystem to an unprecedented level. With the power of carrier data to verify accuracy, mobile advertisers can feel confident that they’re optimising their ad spend toward reaching their appropriate geo-targeted audience,” Goodman said.

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