Evaluating technology options for innovation in marketing - do you know your Hype Cycles?
If you're involved in marketing strategy development, you will be constantly making judgements and doubtless arguing with colleagues about which digital technology innovations are most relevant to your organization. In this article, we compare different examples of Gartner's well-established Hype Cycle tools which serve to highlight the adoption of new technology services within marketing technology.
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You'll see we have updated the post for different years, so you can see how technology trends have changed as techniques like content marketing and personalization have moved along the Hype Cycle.
The 2017 digital marketing Hype Cycle
Gartner has just published their digital marketing and…
Blockchain has revolutionary applications in marketing and will be good news for both publishers and advertisers
Blockchain has been a hot topic in the tech world ever since Bitcoins emerged from obscurity to become the obsession of nerds the world over around 2013. Marketers love finding shiny new technologies to distract them from their day jobs and have enjoyed hopping on bandwagons to prove their down with the latest trends ever since some bright spark realized that newfangled printing press things could be used to churn out flyers to promote the latest in powdered wigs and ruffs.
But whilst marketers have been all over other trends, such as the growth of Snapchat or Live video, like a rash, they've yet to properly 'get' what the blockchain can actually do for them.
I think this is in large part down to two key reasons:
Blockchain is the result of mind-bogglingly clever cryptography and thus…
8 ways by which AI will affect comprehension of data, analyze and utilize data as well as shaping the development of digital marketing tools
Earlier this year, Toyota’s usage of AI for its Rav4 Marketing Campaign got the jaws dropping and the eyes widening. IBM’s Watson had struck again – a Machine Learning (ML) program that used an algorithm to generate ad scripts! The campaign is an example of how Toyota agency-of-record Saatchi & Saatchi Los Angeles is using what it calls "creative programmatic."
The agency wanted to connect the Toyota's Rav4 crossover to the favorite activities of individual consumers but in an unpredictable way. So, Saatchi fed Watson the world's top 1,000 activities - like biking, dancing, and cooking - and asked Watson to pair two activities that had low probabilities of being matched. The agency then used the pairings to create 300 unique videos, which targeted at users on Facebook and Instagram.
What works best in Digital Marketing today?
In our latest infographic, we show the importance of digital marketing to businesses today and the digital marketing techniques that marketers find most effective.
To create it, we blended the latest research from the best sources for digital marketing consumer adoption stats with the results from our latest Managing Digital Marketing 2017 report. It's structured in three parts: The Global Picture of consumer use; a review of benchmarks across the RACE customer lifecycle followed by research on the most effective techniques for managing Digital Marketing.
This research from Smart Insights in association with the TFM&A 2017 event explores approaches businesses use to plan and manage their investments in digital marketing. Findings and recommendations are grouped into 6 areas to improve the commercial contribution of their digital marketing.
Given that we're…
Which tools and sites do you use to keep up with digital marketing?
The idea for our new guide for marketing agencies ‘keeping up with digital’ came from a conversation that the Smart Insights team and I had earlier this year - around how agencies often struggle to ‘encode’ a way of refreshing their digital knowledge within the business.
Agencies that I speak to or work with will often say that they know that staying on top of all the opportunities that new or evolved digital technologies, platforms, media, techniques - and more - can help them and their clients.
It’s a ’good thing’ to do.
But they find it hard to put a structured approach to that together. Hence the guide.
As we worked on the new resource we realised that many of the most useful digital marketing sites and tools that we recommend are also relevant for other types of marketing…
Chart of the Day: How does use of Artificial Intelligence vary in different sectors
As with any new disruptive technology that is moving it's way up the hype cycle, Artificial Intelligence won't be uniformly adopted. It will be a better fit in certain sectors and for businesses of a particular type. As futurist William Gibson put it:
“The future has arrived — it’s just not evenly distributed yet.”
This new research from the McKinsey Global Institute is useful since it looks specifically about how AI and Machine Learning will generate value in the future. One finding, which mirrors our advice for marketers is that businesses should focus on using machine learning applications to support the marketing and sales process and acquire skills where needed in this area.
One example of the value that machine learning can generate in the report is about how Netflix has used a machine learning algorithm to personalize recommendations to its 100 million…
Semantic Web, Knowledge Graphs, Social Media and Memes
As a PhD student, I’m keen to discover the latest academic research, which often happens at conferences. Although my main area of research is within marketing, my specialist area is social media. This year I stumbled over the ACM Conference on Hypertext and Social Media.
In case, like me, you didn’t know, the ACM (Association of Computing Machinery) is a major international organisation focused on ‘Advancing Computing as a Science & Profession’. Their members include Vint Cerf, Sir Tim Berners-Lee and many of the computing great and good. They hold 170 conferences a year and have 37 Special Interest Groups, including Hypertext and Social Media.
Academic research source: ACM Digital Library
They also have a Digital Library that contains a wealth of significant academic articles about fake news, analysing Twitter data, bots and big data, privacy and artificial intelligence, as well as every aspect of applied…
Chart of the Day: McKinsey Analysis rates machine learning marketing applications highly
I thought this was an interesting chart and article from McKinsey on 'What’s now and next in analytics, AI, and automation'.
McKinsey outline the range of opportunities for applying artificial intelligence in their article. They say:
'For companies, successful adoption of these evolving technologies will significantly enhance performance. Some of the gains will come from labor substitution, but automation also has the potential to enhance productivity, raise throughput, improve predictions, outcomes, accuracy, and optimization, as well expand the discovery of new solutions in massively complex areas such as synthetic biology and material science'.
At Smart Insights, we've been looking beyond the hype to look at specific practical applications for applying AI in marketing. Our recommendation is that the best marketing applications are in machine learning where predictive analytics is applied to learn from historic data to deliver more relevant personalization, both on site, using email…
6 implications for selecting and managing today's and tomorrow's marketing technology
We've been sharing the latest Marketing Technology Landscape map by Scott Brinker, @chiefmartec for several years now. You've almost certainly seen one of the earlier iterations since it has been widely shared. I love it because it's a USEFUL infographic - it prompts marketers to review their current Marketing Technology and take action to improve their Marketing Technology Stack.
When I discuss it with marketers when speaking or training, it certainly has a big impact, not always in a good way... It prompts that "OMG how do I cope?" fear amongst marketers and business owners due to its complexity. But, for me, it shows the opportunity of the many tools we have available to deliver more relevant, more personalised communications today. It's inspired the Smart Insights team to create our own Martech infographic which includes both insight and operational tools across our RACE planning framework.…
Mapping the most effective AI technologies for marketing across the customer lifecycle
AI technology is a hot topic in marketing at the moment, but AI is a broad term covering a wide range of different technologies. Artificial intelligence means any technology that seeks to mimic human intelligence, which covers a huge range of capabilities such as voice and image recognition, machine learning techniques and semantic search. Marketers like to wax lyrical about the latest exciting technologies and bang on about AI for image recognition, speech recognition, preventing data leaks, or even targeting drones at remote communities. All well and good. But how the bloody hell are marketers supposed to do anything with that information? It's just hype, you can't implement it.
That's why we've identified fifteen artificial intelligence techniques that businesses of all sizes can implement, rather than techniques which only major tech giants can devote resources to. We've also…