CMO's top 8 martech stories for the week - 9 June 2022

All the latest martech and adtech news from Salesforce, Genesys, Movable Ink, CreativeX, ActiveCampaign, Klearly, GumGum and Zitcha.

Salesforce Customer 360 innovations aim to better connect marketing, commerce and service

Salesforce has taken the wrappers off an array of new Customer 360 innovations that connect marketing, commerce and service data on one platform.

The next-gen Marketing and Commerce Clouds are about giving organisations across industries new ways to deliver more personalised, connected experiences. New features include triggered campaign messages that bring together Marketing Cloud personalisation and engagement based on new product catalogue and behavioural triggers. There’s also a digital command centre for Slack to monitor performance and activity across Marketing and Commerce Cloud.

Fresh Google Ads and Salesforce Customer Data Platform integration means brands can automatically connect first-party data in a unified customer profile to efficiently plan, activate and optimise marketing campaigns on Google Ads. An Intelligence Ecommerce Marketing Insights app unifies a company’s commerce and marketing data and KPIs on a single platform, while the Intelligence Connector for B2C Commerce Cloud combines orders and product data, unlocking insights into product, revenue and sales performance over time. For example, marketers can now see, in real time, the number of orders placed during a promotion, or the top three products ordered by different customer demographics.

In addition, there are new AppExchange Partners for Marketing and Commerce for Customer Data Platform (CDP) and Commerce Cloud on the Salesforce AppExchange.

“A growing number of companies want to unify their data across marketing, commerce and service so they can deliver truly connected customer experiences on any channel – in-store, via email or when shopping on social media,” said Salesforce Digital Experiences EVP and GM, Lidiane Jones. “These innovations help companies tap into the power of automation so they can focus on what matters most – driving productivity and building trusted relationships with customers.”

Commerce Cloud has also had the integration do-over. New functionality includes social integration for Commerce Cloud with TikTok, allowing users to redirect TikTok ads to their commerce sites. Businesses can also create and automate product feeds, segment audiences and publish ads while finding and targeting new audiences.

Salesforce also announced a pilot of its NFT Cloud to extend customer experience capabilities into the Web 3.0 realm. Features including being able to mint, manage and sell non-fungible tokens (NFTs) directly on the Salesforce Customer 360 Platform and securely connect customer data to gain a 360-degree view across a customer’s physical and digital worlds.

Another integration has been made between Commerce and Service to give agents a complete view of order history across channels and the ability to issue returns, exchanges, promotions or complete orders, without transferring them to other departments.

Triggered Campaign Messages and Commerce for Customer Service are available now, Seamless Commerce is expected to be available this month, and social integration for Commerce Cloud, Commerce Marketplace plus Digital Command Center for Slack are expected to be available in September 2022. The updated Google integration is expected in coming months.

CreativeX Raises $US25m in series B funding

CreativeX has secured US$25 million in Series B funding for its creative data platform designed to help brands measure the creative elements of marketing against global excellence goals.

The funding round was led by Guggenheim Investments, on behalf of certain clients, with participation from Beringea, the Brandtech group and Conviction.

CreativeX offers a creative data platform that analyses a brand’s in-flight and pre-flight image and video content to determine how that content stacks up relative to industry best practices, as well as the brand’s creative criteria. The platform looks at creative quality, as well as representation of people in advertising, and has a measurement framework for tracking.

Started in 2015 and with a focus on social, CreativeX technology is now used by more than 5000 brands including Nestle, Facebook and PepsiCo. The latest funding will be used to increase content coverage out of social to cover display, ecommerce and TV, as well as launch new creative measurement capabilities. There are also plans to expand APIs to merge creative data with existing data lakes as well as more research on creative effectiveness.

“Marketers are waking up and recognising their creative for what it is: a major untapped competitive advantage to drive media efficiencies and long-term brand growth,” CreativeX founder and CEO, Anastasia Leng, said. “This funding round, by far the largest in CreativeX history, is a testament to the impact our technology can have on the advertising industry, not only by reducing the $10 billion of wasted spend on creative that’s not set up to succeed, but also by bringing a layer of data to help marketers make creative more accessible, more representative, and better for long-term brand growth.”

Genesys deepens customer journeys analytics

Customer experience management vendor, Genesys, has expanded its existing orchestration capabilities with deeper customer journey analytics.

The vendor said businesses can now evolve from seeing single interactions to visualising end-to-end customer journeys across multiple channels in real time for dynamic total experience awareness and control. Available in the Genesys Cloud CX and Genesys Multicloud CX platforms, the Pointillist Contact Centre Optimisation solution amplifies insights available to businesses by helping them unlock data from any source to better visualise journeys and measure the impact of customer behaviour on their outcomes.

Powered by artificial intelligence (AI), the solution is about exposing anomalies, period-over-period changes and trend deviations as they happen. When unusual operational patterns are detected, businesses are automatically notified so they can intervene with a more prescriptive and scalable solution before the problem becomes worse. The solution’s release follows Genesys’ acquisition of Pointillist last year.

As an example of this in practice, Genesys said a large broadcast and cable television company observed a lower Net Promoter Score and higher call-in rates for customers who suspended their mobile service through the website. A deeper analysis using the solution revealed that customers could suspend but not resume mobile services using the website, resulting in higher call volumes. The company improved its self-service functionality to provide a more complete digital experience. The journey analysis projected 10,000 customers per month could restart their service via the website without calling in for assistance, increasing NPS for these customers by 7 points and saving more than US$1 million annually.

ActiveCampaign launches No-Code Data Model Solution

ActiveCampaign is allowing customers to build their own custom objects directly within its app with no coding required.

The new functionality released this week lets users extend contacts, accounts and deals with their own data without needing to go through the API or pull in developer expertise. Custom objects can be used to workflows for dynamic, automated experiences, email personalisation, lead generation forms and reporting based on any set of data a company uses to run their business.

ActiveCampaign also noted businesses can connect to app integrations that leverage custom objects like Salesforce, Zendesk Support, Calendly, DocuSign or Eventbrite, or otherwise build custom objects to support their own use case.

“At ActiveCampaign, we know that data is at the heart of every growing business. Companies of all sizes use this information to make decisions, streamline operations and develop winning ideas that accelerate their growth,” said the vendor’s founder and CEO, Jason VandeBoom. “That’s why out of all the momentum at the company this quarter, a highlight is making custom objects available to our customers in app without needing API or developer knowledge. We know organising and taking action on information about customers, prospects and sales leads is what powers every area of our customers’ businesses. We are thrilled to make this accessible.”

Movable Ink unveils Da Vinci AI

Movable Ink has created its own content personalisation AI engine it’s calling Da Vinci.

The vendor said Da Vinci is an AI-driven content personalisation engine aimed at creating a more meaningful approach to individualised content to help brands achieve higher customer lifetime value. Da Vinci uses AI to build, balance and navigate a map of a brand’s catalogue through editorial and promotional content across marketing programs and over the customer relationship.

For example, a unique content discovery path will be created for each customer that guides them to more relevant products and categories through marketing programs aimed at optimising for higher lifetime value. Movable Ink said it’s also built a user interface to allow brands to decouple content creation from campaign set-up and scheduling.

Da Vinci is developed off the back of a creative library with content analytics to identify how creative has performed across different audiences based on metrics such as impressions, conversion and clicks. It then optimises high-performing content. Feedback loops are built-in to help brands measure revenue lifts in a more disciplined way.

“Between ever-changing consumers’ tastes and needs, and the laborious work required of brands to reach every customer, the marketer’s struggle has become insurmountable,” said Movable Ink CEO and co-founder, Vivek Sharma. “Existing campaign processes are outdated and focus on next-best actions and short-term customer value, leaving revenue and relationship-building opportunities on the table. Da Vinci pursues a longer-term, mutually beneficial strategy that leads to higher customer lifetime value. That’s a game-changer for brands worldwide.”

Klearly raises US$4m for revenue team solution

US-based Klearly has raised US$4 million in capital for its predictive analytics tools aimed at helping B2B revenue teams better understand what actions to prioritise next for sales success.

The latest round was led by York IE and includes IDEA Fund Partners, Studio VC, Front Porch Ventures, and Triangle Tweener Fund. Klearly’s latest raise will provide additional scale in product capabilities and go-to-market efforts. It will also boost the launch of a self-service installation of the Klearly application into CRM and marketing automation platforms.

As focus rises on first party-data accuracy and insights while third-party cookies become obsolete, Klearly said it’s providing quicker time-to-trust by reading between the lines of data and providing immediately actionable insights.

“With Klearly, B2B revenue teams finally have the power to understand what’s been working – and more importantly, what to do next and which prospects and customers to prioritize,” claimed Klearly founder and CEO, Alex Krawchick. “The future of B2B revenue is now; it's about using data to look ahead with a guidance system that empowers teams to make evidence-based decisions. We call this Winfluence and it gives teams the power to know what to do more of and where it's ok to say no.”

New retail media platform launches

Australia-based retail media platform, Zitcha, has officially launched with the ambition to empower retailers to become publishers by monetising their owned and external media ecosystem.

The software platform connects the media assets of a retail brand including email, apps, digital in-store screens, Web and social media. It then automates purchasing media across these channels, allowing retail suppliers to connect directly with consumers.

The platform began as a tool for retailers to facilitate supplier advertising across social media and search channels. Since then, it’s gone through an incubation period to include the extended media ecosystem. Those already utilising the technology include New Zealand-based The Warehouse Group. Zitcha said more than 200 supplier brands have also come onboard, including Panasonic, LG and Nespresso have come on board as well as the Liquor Marketing Group.

In addition to increased visibility, Zitcha said brands selling through retailers can access rich first-party data, which improves customer targeting and conversion rates.

“First-party data is fast becoming the most important driver of digital advertising. Many organisations have a wealth of data available but are yet to realise its potential,” Zitcha CEO, Troy Townsend, said. “This is especially true for retailers that are also sitting on a gold mine of advertising inventory which creates an unmissable opportunity to monetise owned assets while adding value for suppliers.”

GumGum partners with Tumblr on contextual partnership

GumGum is claiming a first after announcing a partnership with social network, Tumblr, to introduce contextual targeting capabilities across the platform.

Tumblr is reportedly the first social platform to leverage Verity, a contextual solution with Media Rating Council’s content-level accreditation for contextual analysis, brand safety and suitability. The solution allows the platform to access technologies that can read video, audio, text and image signals on a frame-by-frame basis, allowing for enhanced contextual and brand safety analysis and targeting. As part of this partnership, GumGum will be the first contextual provider to provide GIF support.  

“GumGum has always believed that the future of our digital ecosystem will rely on contextual targeting technology because it inherently eliminates the dependence on personal data while leveraging deep learning tools to serve relevant ads in the moments that matter,” said GumGum head of Verity, William Merchan. “We’re thrilled to offer our proprietary technology to a social platform like Tumblr, making GumGum the first contextual platform to support GIF-based media.”

In addition, Tumblr will now become a media partner for GumGum, joining a network of more than 30,000 publishers and giving GumGum’s clients access to Tumblr’s inventory.

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