The Relevancy Group Releases Industry’s First Buyer’s Guide on Email Marketing Agencies

BOSTONAug. 24, 2015PRLog — The Relevancy Group, a leader in email marketing research and consulting, today released its first ever The Relevancy Ring: Email Agency Buyer’s Guide – 2015. The research analyzes seven email marketing agencies, four Independent Agencies including Alchemy Worx, BrightWave, Merkle and Trendline Interactive and three that are divisions within ESPs (Email Service Providers) including: Acxiom Impact, Epsilon and Yes Lifecycle Marketing. The report sheds light on which agencies provide services that improve the ROI of current email marketing technologies.The Relevancy Ring: Email Agency Buyer's Guide, 2015

The Relevancy Group partnered with a new non-profit foundation A Chance in the World™ to create the analysis criteria for the report. We challenged all of the participants to come up with a detailed communications plan for the non-profit including strategy, analytics and creative ideas to increase donations and engagement with the foundation. The Relevancy Group and one of the foundation’s founders, Tonya Pemberton, evaluated these “pitch meetings.” This research was conducted over a period of four months.

“I am thrilled that we are delivering the first ever buyer’s guide dedicated to email marketing agencies,” said David Daniels, CEO and Founder of The Relevancy Group. “This Buyer’s Guide utilizes our patent pending Ring research methodology which is based on hundreds of quantifiable measures, client satisfaction and input from multiple analyst contributors.”

An excerpt of this research is featured in Issue 7 of The Marketer Quarterly, a digital magazine that is free to subscribers with registration at www.marketerquarterly.com. The report can be purchased on The Relevancy Group’s website www.relevancygroup.com.

About The Relevancy Group, LLC | www.relevancygroup.com

Founded in 2010, The Relevancy Group (TRG) provides market research, survey design and consulting. Working with leading brands, vendors, startups and associations, TRG acts as an educator and trusted advisor, optimizing omnichannel connected marketing strategies and tactics. TRG assists marketers (buyers) to connect with vendors (sellers) and manage the vendor selection process.  Each year TRG represents tens of billions of email messages out for bid for new solution providers. TRG publishes research on email, social, mobile, display, data management, digital marketing, Internet Identity Management, wearables, and the Internet of Things. TRG publishes The Marketer Quarterly, the free digital magazine for marketers by marketers. http://www.marketerquarterly.com/subscribe

Contact
Tina Mosetis
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What is Marketing Utopia and how do we get there?

boboSince the dawn of the web, digital marketers have dreamed of a place where data flowed freely and the needs of our customers and prospects were easily anticipated and met [or exceeded] by our extraordinary omnichannel campaigns.

Last week, the team at Experian Marketing Services announced two exciting enhancements to the Experian Marketing Suite at their annual Client Summit, and made a case that marketing Utopia could actually be found in the desert of Las Vegas.

EMS customers like Jason John from Publishers Clearing House [also a Relevancy Group client] presented several compelling case studies that highlighted the customer centric, cross channel approach that they have been implementing, and the impacts on their businesses. One common theme: user expectation is evolving rapidly, and marketers who aren’t in lockstep, are in trouble. As Jill Ellis, coach of the 2015 world champion US Women’s National Soccer Team [and speaker at the event] tells her players: “you can be on the right track, but if you don’t move fast enough, you’ll get run over.”

The two enhancements announced at the event are designed to add velocity to customer programs.

Real-time, predictive intelligence and automated analytics –

In Vegas, I met with Emad Georgy, SVP Global Product Development, and Justin Orgel, Director Strategic Services, who were both excited about the release of this enhancement that helps marketers predict the performance of cross-channel campaigns through real-time identity and intelligence data.

Predictive modeling isn’t new for many sophisticated marketers, but the real-time nature, and depth of the EMS solution makes it a significant addition to the toolset; recent TRG research highlights the fact that brands are increasingly leveraging real-time data and generating significant return on the investment, so the timing is good too.

Cross-channel audience activation – 

EMS also announced new addressable advertising functionality that enables brands to leverage their first party data [in combination with Experian data, or not] to target audiences online, in mobile, TV, and direct mail.

Differentiators include the support of single campaigns, insights on cross channel attribution, and Experian’s identity and consumer data.

This is certainly a meaningful enhancement to the Marketing Suite, one which I am looking forward to exploring in more detail.

The 1000+ seasoned marketers at #Utopia were treated to entertainment from Salt-N-Pepa, and engaging talks with Stephanie McMahon, Chief Brand Officer, WWE, Inc., Carli Lloyd, Megan Rapinoe, and coach Jill Ellis from the US Women’s National Team, actor Joe Manganiello, and Yael Cohen, Founder, President & CEO, Fuck Cancer, as well as a Keynote from Erik Wahl Graffiti artist, entrepreneur, philanthropist & author, “Unthink.”

Experian Marketing Services produces a first rate event, and throws a tremendous party, but they were a leader in both our 2014 and 2015 Relevancy Ring ESP Buyer’s Guide because their technology and people enable customers to develop and evolve programs in their efforts to achieve marketing Utopia. (Download The Relevancy Group’s Relevancy Ring – 2015 ESP Buyers Guide with registration.)

Thank you to Matt Seeley, Ashley Johnson and Meghan Attreed for the invitation and hospitality, it was great to see old friends, make new ones, and spend a few days enjoying the #suitelife.

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Webinar: The Value of Multi-Channel Real-Time Segmentation

Thu, September 10th, 2015 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM EDT   Register for free

Join this free webinar and learn how to triple email marketing revenue by utilizing real-time data and automating customer lifecycle messaging. This webinar is based on The Relevancy Group research report “The Value of Multi-Channel Real-Time Segmentation,” which surveyed 300 marketing executives, underscores the value of capitalizing on real-time data. According to the report, marketers that utilize real-time multichannel data generate nearly three times more revenue in their marketing programs than their peers that do not utilize real-time data. Adding automation pushes those results even higher. Marketers that automate customer lifecycle messaging through tactics such as rules-based triggers, drive 133% more revenue than those that don’t.

Learn the challenges and successful tactics necessary to implement real-time data segmentation.

Speakers Include:
David Daniels, CEO & Founder of The Relevancy Group
John D. Polcari, SVP Sales & Marketing, Zeta Interactive

Register for free

Many New Innovations Announced at Salesforce Connections

ExactTarget Connections is always a fantastic digital marketing event. This year, Salesforce Marketing Cloud (formerly ExactTarget) moved Connections from Indianapolis to New York City so that they could accommodate the 18,000 registered attendees. It was a mass of humanity and my break out session with Jonathan Wilbur from Fanatics and Arthur Sweetser eDatasource was standing room only.Connections2015

But the real buzz at the conference was about the many new innovations from Salesforce and their partners.

Speed: True to theme that customer now rules, and speed is the new currency of business; Salesforce Marketing Cloud improved the performance of the email application. The platform is now faster and they made it easier to use.
Journey Improvements: The next generation Journey Builder includes improved testing capabilities, analytics and they have completely integrated sales cloud and service cloud into the marketing journey. For example, this makes it possible to pause an individual’s marketing journey if there is a serious service incident. Once the service case is closed, the marketing journey resumes or can be adapted based on the context of the service incident.
Connecting Advertising: The Salesforce Marketing Cloud now makes it easier to trigger ads based on CRM customer data and they have expanded their partnerships so that ads can be displayed anywhere. SoMedia announced a new video ad production integration and listings with Salesforce.  Further improving Salesforce’s Active Audiences, LiveIntent has partnered with Salesforce Marketing Cloud to empower marketers to orchestrate personal advertising campaigns as part of every touch point along the customer journey. The partnership will allow Salesforce Marketing Cloud customers to leverage the LiveIntent platform for people-based marketing campaigns in email.
Social Studio Upgrades: The adoption of Social Studio has increased 20x year over year and these new adopters will no doubt be delighted with the increased number of platforms that are supported including LinkedIn, YouTube, Instagram, Facebook Video and Google+. Social Studio is now fully integrated in to Journey Builder now with a single sign on and new iPad app. Social Studio will listen across any of the social networks and allows users to build processes around it, such as leveraging an individual’s social disposition in the customer journey. Social studio is also integrated into Active Audiences, which empowers the marketer to target ads based on what they are listening for the social net.
The 1+1+1 Model: Philanthropy continues to drive the Salesforce culture. To date they have delivered 920K service hours, $85 million dollars in grants and 25K non-profit organizations operate for free on Salesforce.
Continued Growth: As 6th largest software company in the world, Salesforce was recently added to the Fortune 500. They have 16,000 employees and for FY 2015 Salesforce expects to be a $7 billion dollar company.

In addition to the great speakers and keynotes, in Salesforce style there were some fun surprises that included a performance by The Roots, Elle King and a cameo by Derek Jeter who briefly talked about leadership.

It was a great event and I always appreciate their invitation to have me speak, and if you missed my session we will be running it again in a few months at Dreamforce in California. The Relevancy Group team looks forward to seeing you there.
Until then,
David

The Marketing Email that (almost) went Horribly Wrong

By Chris Marriott

I’ve written it before, but I’m writing it again: Email is the most powerful marketing channel in the universe. Period. But not every email marketing story can have a happy ending. What follows is a cautionary tale from the annals of email marketing that almost had a very unhappy ending.

It all started the Saturday before Easter. At 8:06 a.m., the following email hit my mail box. I should start by saying I am a Gold member of FTD, meaning that I pay an annual fee and get all my subsequent flower orders delivered with no service charge. Trust me when I tell you that once you eliminate the pesky service charge, you tend to send a lot of flowers to different people. So it makes you a pretty good customer. Anyway, this is the first email I received.

Due to the power of email marketing, as I looked at this email, it occurred to me that I should send my oldest daughter some flowers for Easter. She loves getting flowers, and besides I could “save 10% sitewide*”! I know, the asterisk immediately tells you there are some exclusions to that statement, but nevertheless, I clicked to the site, found an arrangement I liked, and placed the order. Like I always do, I then anxiously awaited the purchase confirmation email. I am one of those people who open and then save every purchase confirmation email. The one below promptly hit my inbox at 10:24 a.m. (I didn’t actually make the order until close to that time).

Read more …

Think Like A Human

For four years I was in charge of driving email acquisition and website traffic in the BtoC space. Working for a large CPG company in the Midwest, every day we would ask ourselves questions such as: Who is our customer? Are they searching for cookie recipes on their mobile phone? What do they like to make for dinner? Do they prefer getting food ideas via email? After four years of testing, we learned that our consumer was a female who browsed recipes on devices and apps, loved chicken for dinner more than beef, apple recipes in the fall, and wanted the top Holiday cookies via email in Nov and Dec. We knew her and this was BtoC marketing at its best!

Recently I switched gears and started working with a global manufacturer of scientific instruments. Their BtoB products are sold to a variety of industries including Food, Pharma, Clinical Labs, and Environmental. Their products enable a beverage maker to know the alcohol percentage in their beer. They help University labs do clinical research on Ebola. They also enable environmental firms to test for pesticides in water. Given the depth and breadth of their product offerings, they were in need of driving product awareness across all of these industries. When working with them on a paid media program, we found ourselves asking the following questions: Who is our customer and how best do we reach them? Are they researching the latest scientific instruments online? What kind of content would get them excited about coming to our website? Do they attend trade shows for the latest industry research or do they search for it online? After working with them for only 4 months, we know so far that our target consumer is a scientist who searches on Google for industry related research (can you say metabolomics analysis?) and new instruments via both their mobile phone and desktop!

When comparing these two clients, with one we were doing BtoC marketing and the other we were doing BtoB. But were we really? For years we’ve been separating BtoC and BtoB, as if they represent different beings. So what really is the difference between BtoC and BtoB marketing? At the end of the day, aren’t we simply marketing to humans? After all, a human is making the decision on whether or not they like your sugar cookie recipe and want to view it on your website. And a human is using Google to search for the latest research on pesticide analysis and deciding whether your company is an authority on the latest technological innovations in chromatography.

The first company I ever worked for was a Fortune 10 CPG company with the most recognizable consumer logo in the world- Marlboro. Philip Morris taught us to ‘Think Like a Consumer” when marketing Marlboro.   Whether we’re moms looking for that cake recipe online or we’re scientists looking for the latest research, we’re all consumers. We decide where and how we consume content. So maybe we need to stop thinking BtoC or BtoB, and instead think Human to Human. Or better yet, Think Like a Human!

3 Hot Email Companies You Should Follow – by Chris Marriott

38075It’s a brand new year. And it’s a new opportunity for you to take your email marketing to another level of sophistication and effectiveness. With that in mind, it’s important to remember that great email marketing doesn’t begin and end with your email service provider (ESP). No doubt about it, having the wrong ESP is like that hangover you woke up with on New Year’s day — it’s hard to get rid of, and it makes everything else hurt. But even if you’ve got the right partner, you still need to pay attention to other companies in the email marketing ecosystem. This is where a lot of the innovation is happening today — innovation in testing, in content, and in measurement.

You owe it to your email marketing program to pay attention to what’s happening in the competitive space, if only because many of these innovations will eventually work their way into the platforms of the major ESPs. So to start your email year off on the right foot, here are three companies that I am paying close attention to in 2015.

Wylei

The first company on my list is Wylei. “Adaptive content” is a phrase email marketers have been hearing more and more frequently, and Wylie is an emerging leader in this category. Its platform provides real-time adaptive content solutions to agencies and brands to increase digital messaging relevance and engagement by automatically adapting emails based on how, where, and when they are viewed, all in real time.

There is more than one player in this area, but what I really like about Wylei is how easy it is to use. Wylei provides marketers with a code snippet that is easily included in the HTML, and it incorporates adaptive content logic, automated real-time and continuous A/B testing to identify and learn patterns in order to provide best fit content. Wylei’s continuous identification of behavior patterns and real-time application of its machine learning algorithm is a key distinction of its solution. Wylei brings real-time multivariate testing and behavior recognition to email to optimize content decisions at message open time. And they have established partnerships with all the major ESPs, landed some big brands (most recently Dell, Marriott, and Vistaprint, to name a few) and expanded its solution into the personalized video space.

In the words of Mike Monteiro, Wylei’s CEO, “The core of what we do is help marketers connect with their customers individually, and at scale. We all know that genuinely compelling content is what drives engagement, and that personalized, context-specific messaging is compelling. The challenge is how to listen, respond intelligently, and then listen again, across millions of customers all at once. The exciting thing is that technology has now evolved to the point where that’s not only a possibility, but an imperative.”

eDatasource

Full disclosure: I’m on the Board of Directors at eDatasource. However, that shouldn’t disqualify it from making this list — particularly since I wouldn’t be on the Board if I didn’t think it were an interesting company! eDatasource isn’t a new company. It’s been around since 2003. It provides its services both directly to marketers, as well as to most of the leading ESPs. What does it do? Based in New York City, eDataSource collects, analyzes, organizes, and archives millions of marketing messages, providing competitive intelligence and analytics to the email marketing community. G.B. Heidarsson, the CEO, just celebrated his one-year anniversary at the helm, and the first 12 months of his tenure have been a beehive of activity, including the introduction of completely new tool sets and innovative approaches that manage to get actionable competitive true-real-time information into the hands of marketers, thus enabling them to react and outsmart the competition in a way never before experienced. Yesmail was impressed enough to incorporate this data into its own Competitive Intelligence Tool.

read the rest at iMedia Connection