Industry News

SSB Awarded E&I Cooperative Contract for Data Management, Integration and Visualization

Competitive Bidding Process Results in Contract that Offers Efficiency, Savings and Speed for Member Institutions

As part of an evolved and focused approach to helping education institutions manage and structure data from all sources to address the important issues of constituent and internal engagement, full lifecycle management, and consistency in communications, SSB today announced it has been awarded a contract with E&I Cooperative Services (E&I). The contract is the result of a competitive process and will offer E&I member institutions standardized contracting, pricing, efficiency, and the opportunity to secure the leading partner for foundational data management in education.

“This is a wonderful relationship for SSB, and a tremendous opportunity for our current and future clients in K-12 and higher education,” said SSB Senior Partner Steve Hank. “E&I thoroughly vets all of their contracted providers throughout the competitive bidding process and ensures their members have not only the best deal, but the best solution. We’re proud to be in that category as it relates to the foundational data platform SSB has created and optimized for education.”

E&I helps members maximize supply chain efficiencies through improved business processes. They deliver the deep expertise, solutions, and services that help institutions excel in business performance – sourcing effectively, driving down costs, and promoting operational efficiencies. E&I is the only member-owned cooperative focused on the educational community and related institutions. Their members save more than $200 million annually by utilizing their contracts and value-added services.

“We are so pleased to have the opportunity to bring our members the unparalleled services offered by an industry leader such as SSB,” said Tom Fitzgerald, CEO of E&I. “Their proven track record in helping higher ed institutions enhance constituent relationships, stimulate fan engagement, and increase revenue will greatly empower our membership to reach their financial goals.”

SSB helps higher education institutions achieve a higher level of engagement with their varied audiences by capturing, standardizing, cleaning, integrating, and reporting on data that is combined from any number of disparate sources and structured for use by any number of outputs, such as automated marketing, email management, operational evaluations, and much more. This creates active and actionable business intelligence that allows the institution to ensure that it is delivering the right message, at the right time, to the right person, while also improving the speed and quality of decision making, eliminating communication silos, and aligning goals and metrics.

About E&I
E&I Cooperative Services (E&I) is the member-owned, not-for-profit sourcing cooperative delivering expertise, solutions and services to higher education and related institutions. E&I provides members with access to a diverse portfolio of competitively awarded contracts, electronic procurement solutions and consulting services to help them source effectively. By leveraging the knowledge and expertise of more than 4,300 member institutions, E&I helps members reduce costs and optimize supply chain efficiencies. The Cooperative’s member‐driven competitive solicitation process has been validated by the National Institute of Governmental Purchasing (NIGP) as being in compliance with generally accepted public procurement standards. For more information, please visit:

SSB recognized as Microsoft US Public Sector 2017 Partner of the Year Award Winner for Education

As it continues to help education institutions manage and structure data from all sources to address the important issues of constituent and internal engagement, full lifecycle management, and consistency in communications, SSB today proudly announced it has won the Microsoft US Public Sector 2017 Partner of the Year Award. Microsoft’s US Public Sector 2017 Partner of the Year Award recognizes SSB for exemplary commitment to Microsoft and to the Education field.

“This is a great honor and reflects the effort and expertise SSB has brought to the evolution of utilizing a robust approach to managing data to drive results in the Education category,” said SSB Senior Partner Bryan Smith. “The foundational data platform SSB has created and optimized for Education is enhanced by the power of Microsoft Azure.”

Winners were chosen from more than 100 organizations across the US Public Sector segment areas they serve.

The Microsoft US Public Sector 2017 Partner of the Year Awards honor partners that have demonstrated business excellence in delivering Microsoft solutions to multiple customers over the past year. This award recognizes SSB as succeeding in effective engagement with its local Microsoft office while showcasing innovation and business impact, driving customer satisfaction, and winning new customers.

SSB helps Higher Education institutions achieve a higher level of engagement with their varied audiences by capturing, standardizing, cleaning, integrating, and reporting on data that is combined from any number of disparate sources and structured for use by any number of outputs, such as automated marketing, email management, operational evaluations, and much more. This creates active and actionable business intelligence that allows the institution to ensure that it is delivering the right message, at the right time, to the right person, while also improving the speed and quality of decision making, eliminating communication silos, and aligning goals and metrics.

“The 2017 Public Sector Partner of the Year Award winners represent the most innovative and transformative work being done across our partner community, serving the mission of customers across US Government and Education.” said Gail Thomas, Vice President, US Public Sector, Microsoft. “We are honored to recognize SSB as a recipient of Microsoft’s US Public Sector 2017 Partner of the Year Award.”

The Microsoft Partner of the Year Awards recognize Microsoft partners that have developed and delivered exceptional Microsoft-based solutions over the past year.

Ring, Ring! 10 Powerful Insights Marketers Can Only Get from Phone Calls

Source: Marketo Blog

Marketers are trained masters in the art of digital analytics. We can follow the digital customer journey in our sleep. Email open rates, content downloads, social shares—easy! What could we possibly be missing?

It turns out phone calls hold a ton of valuable (even essential) marketing insights. I know this flies in the face of your digital sensibilities, but the truth is a simple phone call has customer and marketing insights you just can’t find anywhere else.

Here are 10 marketing insights you can only gain from phone calls:

1. True Campaign Performance

It’s no secret digital marketing drives phone calls. In fact, according to Invoca’s 2015 Call Intelligence Index, 54% of customer-initiated phone calls come from mobile marketing campaigns, and 30% come from traditional online channels and campaigns.

This means phone calls are a key metric when measuring marketing campaign performance. It’s not enough to measure form submissions and email open rates. If you really want to know how people are responding to your campaigns, look at what’s driving people to call. You may be surprised at how often your campaigns generate offline leads.

2. Multi-touch Attribution

In this age of multiple channels, multiple devices, multiple everything, it’s important that we give credit to every touchpoint that influenced a sale. If phone calls aren’t part of your attribution, you’re overlooking a valuable touchpoint and you’ll lose the trail when a prospect picks up the phone.

3. Keyword Performance

Every marketer is doing paid search, and if your business receives calls, you should be tracking those calls back to the paid search keyword that drove it. If you don’t know how your keywords are generating leads—online and offline—you don’t really know how you should be bidding on them.

Even companies that don’t receive many calls can benefit from this level of visibility. After all, people who choose to pick up the phone are generally your best leads. Invoca’s data shows that calls have conversation rates around 30% compared to clicks, which only convert 1-2% of the time.

4. Competitive Threat

Don’t you want to know what your prospects are saying about your competitors? Who do they most often mention or compare your brand to? Your inbound phone calls have the answers. Understanding the competition can help you beat the competition and highlight your unique differentiators.

5. Prospect Objections

Nothing can give you insight into your customer and buyer personas quite like a phone call. No matter how much you examine the emails they’ve opened, the ads they’ve clicked, and the content they’ve read, you’re never going to hear their objections and biggest concerns until you mine your phone calls for this data. Without this data you could be making inaccurate assumptions and explaining your key value propositions in a way that doesn’t resonate with your audience at all.

6. Common Questions

Knowing your prospects’ most common questions is a huge advantage that can help inform everything from your sales scripting, website copy, and overall messaging strategy. It gives you the chance to answer frequently asked questions before it’s too late. This type of insight also makes for great blog fodder and will help move your prospects along the path to purchase. If your leads are well informed, your sales rep will have more effective conversations when the time comes.

To read the rest of the article: Marketo Blog


Smart Design for Customer Engagement – Smart Insights

Customer Engagement


Innovative techniques and examples of engaging web and mobile designs

Gone are the days of promoting your brand face-to-face or through those mailbox flyers and ads in the local newspaper that no one reads anymore. And unless you have a marketing budget equal to the “big boys” you won’t be buying commercial time at the next Super Bowl. Today, you will have to be “lean and mean” with your marketing dollars and get very smart and creative about the design of your content, so that you achieve continued customer and potential customer engagement.

Engagement is an Emotional Phenomenon

People “Engage” when their emotions are triggered, either positive or negative. Thus, the goal of content design must be to stimulate emotions that will influence behaviours and motivate customers/potential customers to act. As important as it is to define your target market, then, it is just as important to stimulate emotional engagement, happiness, excitement, surprise, and satisfaction. When these emotions are triggered, studies say, customers will:

  1. Recommend you
  2. Become repeat customers
  3. Will be less likely to shop around
  4. Will be less concerned with prices

Engagement is All About User Experience: A Case Study

Jack Daniels is an internationally-known brand, and one might assume that the company does not have a huge need to continue to engage users through content design on a website or through social media. But Jack Daniels knows what every smart marketer knows, that user experience and engagement must be continuous, and content must be designed to do that.
In September, 2014, Jack Daniels teamed up with Arnold Worldwide, an advertising agency, and MediaMonks, a digital production company, to launch a new content marketing campaign that would engage in unique and exciting ways. The basic concept was to solicit great bar stories from bar owners, bartenders, bouncers and patrons from all over the country and then to produce these stories through unique and exciting multi-media. There are videos, of course, but also audio tales told via pay phones, small amounts of text that is hand written, and great special effects of one story melting into the next.


The launch included 30 stories, but many more have been added since. Teasers for these stories occur on YouTube videos and Facebook, and followers are invited to comment and, of course, submit their own crazy tales for potential use. Watch final result here.

Another Facebook campaign has teamed up with Vice Magazine to hold a photo contest. Followers are asked to submit unique photos of bars anywhere in the world. Once the contest ends, the winning photo will be featured in a Jack Daniels ad.

The Conceptual Aspect of Engaging Content Design Comes First

A recent post on by Irene Pereyra, well-known user experience designer, pointed to the steps that must be taken as a conceptual framework is developed for engaging content design. Here are just a few of her suggestions, although reading the entire post would certainly be valuable:

  1. Stop designing for yourself and start designing for your users. What is their demographic, what do they want to know, how will they best engage, and are they tech savvy? You can use analytic tools, of course, but how about reaching out to your customers and just ask them?
  2. Study your competition. What are they doing that is great that you can re-purpose for you own uses? What mistakes are they making that you know you want to avoid? You can pick up a lot of best practices this way!
  3. Things must be simple when they get to your site. Cut down on their tasks and walk them through your site adroitly.
  4. Pretend that all of your users have large fingers. Use big buttons and large input fields. One example of this was the Messages for Japan website that was launched after a huge earthquake in Japan. Everything was big, so that users could write messages easily in a big input field, and there were large buttons for the “send a message” and the “make a donation” options.
  5. You can do your quantitative analysis, but get a third party to do your user testing. You will not be objective.

To read the rest of the article:

7 Things You Should Learn From The Customer Who Doesn’t Convert



Everyone hates shopping cart abandonment.

It’s the boogeyman of Internet marketing, the nemesis of conversion optimizers, and the headache of Internet sales. We fight it tooth and nail. We test incessantly. We optimize, reoptimize, and re-reoptimize, trying to defeat the rising tide of abandonments.

But for all our frenetic battles against shopping cart abandonment, could it be that we’re missing some very valuable information?

I think we are. Shopping cart abandonment is not the pure and unadulterated evil that we think it is. It is an opportunity to learn.

Here’s what we should learn from the customers who choose not to buy. This isn’t an article on techniques to obliterate abandonment. It’s not even about abandonment per se. It’s about all your website traffic and those pesky customers who don’t seem to convert.

Is there anything we can learn from them?

1. Learn about the buy cycle.

One reason why customers don’t convert is because they’re not at the right point in the buy cycle.

What’s the buy cycle you ask? It’s not a misspelling of a two-wheeled transportation device. The more clarifying term, “customer buying cycle,” describes the process that a customer takes when they are considering a purchase.

Here it is in all its visual glory.


There are five basic stages to the customer’s buying cycle. I made them all start with c- and sound the same:

  1. Conception: The customer is aware that she needs or wants something.
  2. Comparison: The customer considers the various places to obtain this product or service
  3. Consideration: The customer evaluates the best and safest decision for her particular needs and situation.
  4. Conversion: BUY! The customer makes the decision to act on this decision.
  5. Continuation: The customer likes the experience, and decides to do it again sometime.

The reality of a customer buying cycle is that a customer can only be at one point on the cycle at a time. Accepting this fact is a basic realization of non-converting customers. Why didn’t they convert? Because they were in the conception, comparison, or consideration phase, that’s why.

That’s not bad. It just is.

Understanding the buy cycle is a key lesson, because you realize that the “lost” conversion may not be a lost conversion at all. It’s a future conversion from a customer who was in the conception phase of the buy cycle.

Obviously, not everyone is going to buy from your website the first time around. You wouldn’t want that anyway, because that would mean that you would have 1) far fewer return visitors, and 2) fewer future conversions.

The cycle, like most other life cycles, seems a little sad at first. But once you realize, hey, it’s a cycle, then you are able to deal with your grief and make more confident marketing decisions.

2. Learn that higher traffic does not equal higher sales.

Here is a saga that many SEOs and digital marketers have experienced.

The director of marketing says, “We need more traffic!” SEOs and writers start to hustle, working their magic and mixing their potions. Traffic starts to climb. KPIs are achieved. Goals are met.

And what happens? Sales plateau.

Why is this the case? Higher traffic does not equal higher sales. Normally, the more traffic you get, the more you tend to sell. In some situations, however, the increasing traffic is driving traffic that is not prepared to convert.

Look at the diagram below. There are three main types of searches, navigational, informational and transactional. If you increase traffic, you may be boosting navigational and informational searches.



Informational queries and the resulting traffic is precisely the type of traffic that is often produced by greater content marketing efforts. Since the nature of the queries is informational, it is likely that it may not drive high-converting traffic.

It’s important to realize that content marketing for all its effectiveness is not a guaranteed route to higher sales. Content marketing agrees to meet customers on their own turf, in their own time, and on their own terms.

More traffic is great. But it just might not translate into immediate sales.

3. Learn that there is such a thing as search query intent.

In keeping with the point above, we need to realize the truth about search queries.Not all queries are created equal. Every query has intent, and that intent impacts whether or not the customer who lands on your website is going to buy or not.

All the search traffic that is rushing into your funnel can be categorized in one of three ways:

  1. Transactional Queries – People who want to buy. They are looking to make a purchase right away or very soon. Many of these searchers will convert.
  2. Navigational Queries – People who are trying to find your website. They may or may not be ready to buy. More often than not, they’re doing pre-purchase research.
  3. Informational Queries – People who are looking for information. These searchers are the least likely to convert right away, but they comprise the largest percentage of website traffic.



Brightedge estimates that a whopping 80% of searchers will land on your website with a desire to get information, not to buy. Only 10% are looking to buy, and therefore likely to convert.



Every searcher starts with intent. This intent, one of the three above, will cause them to act in different ways when they encounter your website.



The better you understand the different types of queries, the better you’ll be able to attract just the kind of search traffic that is most likely to convert.

4. Learn that conversion optimization is important.

All these points lead to an overarching lesson: Conversion optimization is really important.

Why? Because conversion optimization looks at the customer who doesn’t convert, and says, “How can we make you more likely to buy?”

Rather than rely on guesswork, conversion optimization begins a rigorous process of research, analysis, and optimization to turn that non-converting traffic into major conversion improvements.

Conversion optimization techniques “improve the effectiveness of your site to boost sales with the same amount of traffic you’re currently receiving.”

You don’t need more traffic to boost your sales. You just need to improve your website.

How does it work? By testing changes. Normally, conversion rate optimizers (CROs) test versions of a website, compare them, and use the one that converts higher.

It’s A/B testing, and it’s insanely effective.

A/B testing, also known as split testing, can produce shocking results. For example, a little headline change pictured below, Version B, boosted conversions by 38%.



A new signup form increased this business’s leads by 368%.



Conversion optimization is the path to higher sales.

Sure, the non-converting customer is no fun. But moving the needle on conversion rates though some patient testing is amazing.

5. Learn more about your customers.

When you discover that your “customers” aren’t really customers after all, you start to wonder, what are they doing? That’s a great question. But it begs a deeper question: Who are my customers anyway?

One of the most effective methods of gaining more sales is understanding who your customers are. How do you do this?

You read their minds.

Reading your customer’s minds isn’t as sinister as it sounds. You can do this effectively, safely, and with zero hypnosis experience. It’s called the persona.

A persona in commerce is defined as “the ideal visitor you want to have take a specific action on your site.” The most popular way for digital marketers to shape personas is by using demographic characteristics such as age, income, location, gender, etc.

Here are some example personas.


Look at how those personas define the ideal customer. They are focused. They’re not going after “men, aged 35-45.” They’re going after James, 37 who lives in San Francisco, and likes to watch Friends.

A persona needs to be specific because your product is specific. A persona needs to be specific, because you aren’t trying to sell to a mass of incoming search traffic. You’re trying to sell a product to the customer who needs and wants it.

Your persona can be as detailed and as visual as you want. This example persona uses a problem statement to define why the customer is visiting the site. The problem statement is “I’m just not sure what I need to know to get my first mortgage. How do I know I made the right choice?”


This persona problem statement is helpful, because it allows marketers to hone in directly on solving the customer’s problems.

Different analytics platforms including Google Analytics can help you understand your customer demographics in order to make better marketing decisions.

To read the rest:


How The Right Analytics Can Strengthen Customer Engagement

customer engagement


Customer engagement is where the heart is. Data-driven marketing offers industry leaders the opportunity to increase their market growth, while shaping customer satisfaction.

Based on the Forbes Insights and Turn report, “Data Driven and Digitally Savvy: The Rise of the New Marketing Organization,” executives agreed that data-driven marketing is critical in our competitive global economy. Companies embracing this idea are three times more likely than others to say they have achieved a competitive advantage in customer engagement.

Engagement marketing initiates when interested prospects interact with your business. The interaction is more than just talking; both sides must be willing to listen to one another. Your company’s goal is to fulfill their interests, while simultaneously achieving your own business objectives.

Marketing, sales, and customer support managers must work together to create an effective data-driven strategy centered on customer engagement. To attain the best results, your team should integrate a variety of marketing techniques.

Encourage dialogue between your consumers and brand. Improve your strategy with these four approaches:

1. Segment Customers with Personalization

Specificity gives your business the flexibility to cater to your customers’ needs and desires. Commit to learning more about who they are as people. Target visitors based on their lifestyles, not demographics.

Start by defining realistic goals for your big data projects. Setting expectations can secure buy-in within your organization. Moreover, it filters out the big data hype.

Get personal with advertising. Gathering consumer data should help you advertise effectively. No more guessing what product works best for your customers. Data facilitates wise decision-making for the budget.

Leverage data by segmenting your website visitors, and then serve up targeted ads based on users’ interests. You will ensure that the right ads reach the right visitors.

According to, when the computer technology company Lenovo implemented this method, its “click-through rates increased by 30% and resulted in greater conversions and sales.”

Customer-Specific Needs

Be different than your competitors. By aggregating and analyzing more information faster, your team can create smarter campaigns—leading to better customer engagement.

Brands should strive to gain an accurate description of their customers. Then, create personalized messages that stimulate action. According to BtoB Magazine, “real-time analytics create a better link between CRM and email analytics.”


Source: 5 Incredible Examples of Personalized Marketing – Pardot

Doggyloot segments its potential customers differently: by the size of their friendly pets. Follow their lead by producing customized ads and sending intentional emails. As Marketing Sherpa mentions, it doesn’t make any sense to give a 10-pound bone to a five-pound dog.

Take Action

  • Define segmentation within your company.
  • Design advertisements with the customers’ needs in mind.
  • Develop smart campaigns with consumer data.

2. Set Behavioral Triggers

Evaluate customers’ interactions. You will gain new perspectives on how to effectively engage people with your brand. When clients click on a particular button or sign up for a specific mailing list, their behavior should signal a reaction from your team.

Don’t just collect the data. Dig deep and monitor the dynamic behavior of your customers. Identify behavioral outliers, patterns, and associated contexts. Every communication is prompt by “an accurate reflection of the customer’s current behaviors and needs.”

Further, detect your customers’ next moves. The old practice was to let your team study the analytics from a historical perspective. But for today’s marketing, you need analytics that present a forward-looking view. Predicting behavioral patternslead to better timing for customer engagement.

To increase the duration of engagement, prevent people from stopping. In the computer game industry, when players get bored, the game displays new tasks to complete, in addition to the main activity.

So, how does this relate to your business? Prevent customer inactivity by stopping the boredom cycle. Analyze what’s “boring” about your product, website, or customer service. Then, identify opportunities to introduce new mechanisms of engagement.

Behavior-Triggered Email Campaigns

Email with a purpose. Through automation, you can produce email campaigns that engage consumers and convert them into buyers.

Focus on sending emails triggered by your customers’ behaviors. Analyze the campaign’s success by measuring the program ROI, revenue per email, and customer lifetime value.


Source: Behavior-Triggered Email Campaigns Win and Keep Customers

Take a proactive stance. For example, recover lost revenue from abandoned carts. Compose an email to remind your customers of their abandoned product. Offer to answer any questions or provide a discount to encourage purchase completion. When creating behavior-triggered email campaigns, think about customer value to increase your bottom line.

Take Action

  • Analyze your customers’ behavioral patterns.
  • Use predictive modeling to adjust to the future needs of your customers.
  • Keep your customers “active” in your brand with ancillary tasks.
  • Create email campaigns based on customers’ actions

To read the rest of the article:

Millennials put ticket strategies to test – SportsBusiness Daily | SportsBusiness Journal | SportsBusiness Daily Global



Amy Howe, Ticketmaster’s new chief operating officer, sees a common thread in all the major changes the ticketing giant is pursuing.

Between mobile ticketing, social media-based selling, increased in-venue engagement, seat upgrades, more powerful tools for event discovery, and last-minute offers, the millennial audience stands at the heart of all them.

“This audience presents huge implications for our entire product road map moving forward, and how we service our customers. It even influences our [merger-and-acquisition] strategy,” said Howe, formerly an executive with Ticketmaster parent company Live Nation.

“A lot of these things represent really big pivots from where we used to be as a company. This group of consumers is even more engaged in live events than their predecessors. But they have a very different set of needs and have exposed a crucial need on our part to find new ways to reach them.”

The Colorado Rockies use The Rooftop party deck at Coors Field to attract younger fans who often value the social gathering as much as the baseball game itself.
Photo by: Colorado Rockies

Ticketmaster, of course, is far from alone. The entire sports and entertainment industry is fervently trying to find ways to more deeply reach consumers now in their teens to mid-30s. Typically defined as the generation born between 1980 and 2000, the millennial generation is by far the most digitally connected and socially oriented group in history. The oldest portion of that demographic is just starting to approach their peak earning years and the youngest is nearing adulthood, presenting a huge opportunity for anyone in the business of selling a ticket. But they are also more demanding, are frequently taking less traditional career paths than prior generations, and are often less brand loyal.

For many teams, leagues and ticket sellers, the millennial audience represents a quarter to a third of their overall revenue base. But as baby boomers begin to die off, and Generation X ages, millennials will soon represent the majority of the industry’s target audience.

“This is a very valuable audience, and obviously the future of our business,” said Brendan Donohue, senior vice president of the NBA’s team marketing and business operations group. “But they consume content and consume live events differently. It’s a unique audience that requires some nontraditional tactics.”

Some of those newer efforts have included the Portland Trail Blazers’ Student Pass, a mobile-based program offering last-minute tickets to college students for as low as $10, and the Orlando Magic’s Fall Fast Break Pass, a promotion that packaged eight preseason and early regular-season games for a total of $49, but assigned the seats randomly minutes before each contest. Three other NBA teams — Atlanta, the Los Angeles Clippers and Phoenix Suns — also this past season rolled out millennial-targeted, fluid seat programs on a trial basis that were powered by Experience, a dominant player in seat upgrade technology.

To read the rest of the article,

4 reasons why email marketers need to know about DMARC and email security


Really great article about email security from our friends at Yesmail.  The most startling statistic, “Despite the worrying rise in cybercrime, based on a recent study conducted in 2014, more than 75% of enterprises haven’t fully implemented the DMARC policy for email authentication standard. The study also found that the most unprotected industry was healthcare, where 30% of companies had no email authentication protections implemented.”

Early last year, we published a blog post informing marketers about the occurrences of cybercrime within the email security landscape via methods such as email phishing and domain spoofing. We also shared details about a form of email technology called Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting & Conformance (DMARC) that was created to help prevent unauthenticated emails from reaching the consumer’s inbox, thus protecting marketers from having their brand spoofed by identity criminals online.

Interestingly, since then we’ve actually seen a rise in email phishing attempts. In fact based on numbers from the FBI cyber center, 2014 was marked by an average of 22,000 complaints of cybercrime a month, with an estimated total loss of $800 million for the year. Moreover, the center cited that only 15% of the US-based incidents were reported, indicating these loses were only a small portion of the true cost of cybercrimes in 2014.

DMARC technology has been in the email industry for about three years now, yet many organizations are still unaware of its existence and the extent of its benefits when implemented. Despite the worrying rise in cybercrime, based on a recent study conducted in 2014, more than 75% of enterprises haven’t fully implemented the DMARC policy for email authentication standard. The study also found that the most unprotected industry was healthcare, where 30% of companies had no email authentication protections implemented.

If these statistics above are not reason enough to consider DMARC implementation, below are additional key reasons that illustrate why DMARC is quickly becoming a critical best practice for email marketers:

To read the rest of the article:

Step-By-Step Guide To Creating A Marketing Persona

marketing persona


Do you know the answers to these questions about your customers?

  • What is their greatest dream in life?
  • What upsets them or makes them happy?
  • What are their values and fears?
  • What are their hobbies?

The foundation of marketing is the process of identifying, meeting, and satisfying customer wants and needs.  In order to meet their needs you must have a true understanding of your customers, their emotional triggers and what drives them.

Read More

Personalization study findings: Email is top channel; social, web, ads next; data needs vary


Personalization is critical. Customers expect it. It increases click-throughs, open rates, conversions, retention, and ultimately revenue.

But how do you “do” personalization?

It’s different at every step of the customer journey — and there’s a lot that goes into it. There are more channels and devices to reach customers than ever. The data, content, and delivery mechanisms necessary to personalize messages vary for each of them.

That’s why we’ve been surveying you, our readers, to understand what you’re doing and how you’re doing it.

VentureBeat is studying personalization in advertising and marketing
Chime in and we’ll share the data with you!

We’re still collecting data, but we already have some interesting preliminary results:

Identity related data for personalization
At the top of the funnel, prospects begin as anonymous. By the time a customer makes a purchase, they’ve shared more data and have become “known.”

This transition from anonymous to known includes identifiers such as:
• IP address
• Cookie
• Mobile ID
• Social ID
• Email address
• Address
• Phone number
• Loyalty number

Each of these identifiers, and others, can have dozens or hundreds of data points associated with them. Preliminary findings indicate that “known” identifiers (including email and other personally identifiable information, or PII) are used most. But anonymous identifiers like cookies and IP address — used more for advertising and acquisition at the top of the funnel — aren’t far behind. Email is the most important identifier, and also the most important channel.

digital channels personalization
In fact, when it comes to delivering personalized messages, email dominates. The majority of marketers are doing some kind of email personalization, even if it’s just to use a dynamic tag with a person’s name in the subject or header. Website personalization holds several of the top spots as well. Advertising is surprisingly low, given the advanced targeting capabilities of many of today’s ad networks and demand-side platforms (DSPs).

To read the rest of the article, click

7600 E Orchard Rd, Suite 180N,
Greenwood Village, CO 80111
102 Woodmont Blvd, Suite 130,
Nashville, TN 37205
7500 Rialto Blvd, Building 1, Suite 250,
Austin, TX 78735