How Real-Time Targeting Can Revolutionize Your Marketing Strategy on bdex.com

How Real-Time Targeting Can Revolutionize Your Marketing Strategy

Delivering the right content at the right moment is a vital part of obtaining – and keeping – customers

The ways companies reach and obtain new customers has evolved since the early days of marketing and advertising. Long gone are the days of spray-and-pray marketing, when advertisers would send and spread mass campaigns in the hopes of turning a few curious eyeballs into paying customers. Today’s consumers recognize a generic advertisement or message when they see it, and they’re completely turned off. They demand personalization throughout the customer experience – and that begins with a relevant, timely marketing campaign.

Through real-time targeting, companies can access the exact data they need, connect with their customers no matter their device, and create the most effective marketing campaigns possible.

Find the right data at the right time

At its core, real-time marketing is serving the right content to the right person on the right device at the right time. Of course, that’s easier said than done – especially if you don’t know when and where your prospects are shopping or the products and services they’re looking to buy. Many companies rely on common, outdated resources that only provide traditional data or predictive analytics. While helpful for establishing a customer base, this kind of information provides limited value when it comes to real-time marketing.

Enter real-time targeting. By tagging, collecting, and integrating data from online and offline channels and a variety of mobile and desktop devices, companies can get the information they need to target potential customers the moment they start shopping.

Collecting relevant real-time data

To ensure companies can reach potential customers quickly and accurately through real-time targeting, BDEX collects real-time data by:

  • Accessing consumers’ recent activity and purchases (airline tickets, cars, apparel, furniture, etc.).
  • Collecting data from Point-of-Sale (POS) systems in brick-and-mortar stores.
  • Using geofencing technology, a location-based service that accesses GPS, RFID, Wi-Fi, and cellular data to track stores that consumers have visited.

This wealth of data from disparate sources is then integrated into the BDEX Data Exchange Platform, where it becomes unique, highly targeted, and actionable marketing information that companies can use to enable and enhance human connectivity.

Connect customers across multiple devices

Real-time targeting is not just a matter of finding the right data, however. Knowing who and what device to target is a crucial step in any effective marketing strategy.

The proliferation of mobile devices has allowed people around the world to access the internet, but it’s also made it difficult for marketers to match customers across multiple devices. To organize the wealth of data they have on their customers, companies are adopting ID graphs, or databases that hold customer profiles and all the known identifiers that correlate with those consumers. However, if the information in these databases is based purely on the probability of a user being connected to a device, the ID graph might not provide the most accurate matches possible, and since consumers are constantly changing and turning on new devices, it is a challenge to know if your device data is still current.

To ensure certainty when matching customers with devices, BDEX’s ID graph uses a deterministic cross-device matching approach. Rather than relying on probabilistic measures, BDEX uses deterministic authenticated customer information, such as anonymized log-in data, email addresses, and credit card purchases to match and recognize individuals regardless of which device they are using. With real-time information from more than 75 vetted partners and over 800 million mobile-to-email ID connections, BDEX can help you target consumers across different platforms with unparalleled accuracy.

Once companies have a wealth of real-time data and can successfully match users with their correct devices, they can create marketing campaigns customized for specific customers and channels.

Personalize and send marketing campaigns

Personalization is a key component of an effective marketing campaign and a successful customer relationship. Not only do customers appreciate personalization – they expect it. According to Salesforce, 76 percent of consumers expect companies to understand their needs and expectations.

Through real-time targeting and cross-device matching, companies can:

  • Tailor marketing messaging based on behavior. For example, if a customer searched for a pair of shoes via smartphone last week, a company can send a personalized coupon code to encourage a transaction.
  • Offer relevant product recommendations. Based on a customer’s recent purchases or recent search history, a company can offer similar products or other items that would complement the purchase.
  • Take better advantage of programmatic advertising. Accurate, real-time data is the foundation of successful programmatic advertising.
  • Encourage customers to come in-store. Retailers, restaurants, and other businesses can use geofencing technology to know when their customers are close by and encourage them to visit through push notifications, text messages, and other channels.

These are just a few ways real-time data can be used to cultivate human connectivity and enhance customer experience. By using personalization to attract and engage with their customers, companies can foster genuine relationships that lead to increased sales and stronger brand loyalty.

Though the tactic is very effective, 60 percent of marketers struggle to personalize content in real time. To aid companies in their marketing efforts and beyond, BDEX developed the Explore Data Tool, which allows companies to mine through various data sets to reach customers throughout their purchasing process – from building a custom audience to real-time targeting to post-purchase.

Thanks to more than 100 partners, BDEX analysts can search more than 1 trillion data points on every U.S. consumer across 19 categories of shoppers and more than 5,000 other categories – all designed to help marketers fine-tune their real-time marketing. Contact us to learn how we can help you advance your current marketing strategy.

Marketing Culture 2.0: Data Analytics on bdex.com

Marketing Culture 2.0: Data Analytics

A look at updates organizations must make culturally to compete in today’s real-time marketplace, where the focus is human connectivity

Customer data is driving marketing into the future. But even the most tech-savvy marketing office won’t fully succeed when analyzing data without also integrating big changes into its company culture.

Data is valuable; there’s no doubt about that. But without using it to its full potential, businesses miss out on many crucial improvements to business strategy, including, most importantly, fostering real human connections.

A Forrester survey revealed that companies that integrate an advanced analytics culture increased their marketing ROI by an average of 9.1 percent over the last one to two years. This improved performance 1.7 times for these companies versus those that didn’t have an advanced analytics culture.

These considerations clearly matter for the bottom line. Here are ways that organizations can harness data to its full potential.

Updating company analytics culture

A greater focus on company culture is a major part of using data analytics successfully. It’s not enough to use the newest tools and technologies; the team must collaborate and learn together how data push the business forward.

Across the company, the key components of a successful analytics culture are, according to Forrester:

  • Strategy. This requires business leaders to use data insights to drive decision-making. Data should be included in all marketing channels.
  • Adoption. Marketing strategy that is driven by data insights must be considered a business growth driver across the company.
  • Turning insights into action. The team must be able to interpret data and use it quickly.
  • Tech and tools. Data must come from various sources, and tools must be implemented that provide clear and distinguishable facts about the data.
  • Data science expertise. The team must be able to weed through large amounts of data and have the expertise required to use the insights for future predictions.

Because using customer data to drive marketing strategy is so multifaceted, it’s clear that doing so successfully requires much more than bringing new platforms into the office. An effective analytics culture must be learned and implemented across teams and experience levels so decisions can be driven efficiently by real-time data insights.

Integrate data in a decision-making

Company leaders may not be fully using data and relevant customer-insight teams to make decisions. The Forrester surveyors concluded that companies that involve customer insights and data teams into decision-making for marketing show a stronger analytics culture overall than those that don’t.

This is why customer insights and data should be directly connected to marketing decision-making. Business outcomes are improved when decisions are made based on facts and real-time insights. The majority of companies surveyed by Forrester (81 percent) that use data to drive their decision-making processes saw better business outcomes and reported improvements in marketing performance.

Companies should, therefore, focus on educating employees so everyone is aligned on driving decisions from analytics, and teams must then come together behind this practice. Decisions should be backed up by facts pulled from data, and this should become the minimum expectation.

Fostering real human connection

One of the biggest benefits of fully integrating data analytics is the human component. Companies using real-time customer data are able to make immediate, relevant connections with their audience.

It’s important to note that customers shouldn’t be treated like data figures or numbers; for companies to effectively use real-time customer insights, they must connect on an individual and human level. This means decisions should be well thought-through and based on data, but they should also have a basis of underlying trust that drives relationships, as Inc.com points out.

This thinking continues to drive the age-old idea that the customer should be No. 1 in any marketing strategy, digital or not.

Mastering analytics

The Forrester survey also indicated that there were clear advantages for companies that had actually mastered measurement and analytics, over those that had just started implementing such programs. One company surveyed reported a 30 percent reduction in customer acquisition cost that was directly attributable to the company’s increased focus on analytics.

These “mastering” companies were shown to have “nearly 3x improvement in business decision-making speed and time-to-market with new products, higher marketing ROI, greater marketing efficiency, and new customer insights.”

The benefits of revamping analytics company culture are clear. Knowledge is power, and data is behind all valuable marketing information in our modern world. Data should begin to drive business decisions, which will ultimately improve business outcomes, valuable customer connections, flexibility, credibility, and ROI.

BDEX provides advanced data infrastructure that drives human connectivity. The BDEX Data Exchange Platform (DXP) provides data as a service (DaaS) and real-time data signals so you can target consumers with the latest information. Get in touch today to learn more about BDEX’s advanced data solutions for marketers.

How Technologies May Change How Marketing Data Is Gathered and Used on bdex.com

How Technologies May Change How Marketing Data Is Gathered and Used

Today’s ubiquity of connected devices is such that, even for those of us from a past without email, it’s hard to imagine life without them. Companies should use caution to avoid marketing missteps.

If we take today as an admittedly arbitrary starting point, what could the next 20 years bring? In 1999, Google was less than a year old, and Yahoo was still the dominant search engine. Apple released the iBook, the first Wi-Fi-enabled notebook computer.

Comparing the technological landscape of 1999 to today and projecting that rate of change to the world of 2039, it’s difficult to imagine how the future will look. One thing, though, is certain: For the marketing world, the emerging opportunities are equal parts exciting and perilous.

Looking forward to a continuing increase in human connectivity

Two things we can be sure of in the years ahead are the continued increase of human connectivity to a global network of information, entertainment, and commerce, and the continuing rise of machine learning and AI. The combination of these two factors presents new opportunities and challenges to market researchers.

Increased human connectivity to the network will bring with it a data bonanza the likes of which we have never seen. Without the concurrent rise of machine learning, we would not be able to make sense of it all. The incidence of these two factors will bring about a golden age of individually tailored marketing that will seamlessly integrate itself into a user’s buying behavior as they transact business online. Marketing will dynamically adjust to the buyer’s shopping patterns and buying behaviors in such a way as to appear serendipitous.

Data-driven eCommerce opportunities

Imagine shopping at Saks Fifth Avenue’s eCommerce site for a Calvin Klein buckle-strap sheath dress in Summer Yellow. You make the purchase and then open Instagram to check in on your friends, and as you scroll through, you find a photo of the perfect crossbody handbag in a coordinating navy blue. Just a click, and you’re looking at it on the Zaful.com online store. Five minutes later, the bag is on its way to you, and you have no idea you were just sold.

Sophisticated AI used a combination of a color-coordinating accessory-suggestion algorithm and prior analysis of your fashion purchasing habits to make the accessory appear for you. The whole experience might have felt no more intrusive than if an in-the-flesh salesperson showed you the perfect bag for the lovely dress you just picked up.

Don’t make consumers keep looking over their shoulder

A deft touch with these advances will not only be desirable but necessary. The alternative is a version of today’s remarketing efforts amped-up on steroids – ads reactively appearing immediately for every item browsed, every cart abandoned, every word uttered within earshot of a smart speaker. Imagine asking your partner for a stick of gum and then looking at your smartwatch, only to find a banner ad for the latest neutrino-mint-flavored chewing gum there. The banner might as well as say, “Big Marketing Brother Is Watching.”

That’s one of the biggest challenges that marketers will face in the coming age of hyperconnectivity. Collecting every available bit of consumer data and using it without any thought given to how invasive and pushy the use may come off to consumers could lead to a destructive backlash. With companies like Apple pushing privacy protection and giving consumers more options to opt out of data collection, misuse of future data acquisition and handling tech could lead to a drought of data. Those marketers who employ intelligence coupled with restraint will be positioned to reap the benefits: a wealth of actionable data on consumer buying habits and the graceful marketing tactics that encourage purchase without the perception of “digital hard-selling.”

The lessons of a possible future

These are lessons worth taking to heart today. For the future always arrives gradually, until suddenly one looks around and realizes that the future is – how’d that happen? – now. Those marketers who seek to harness the full power of data – yet with the foresight to use that information in thoughtful and clever ways that don’t heighten consumer concerns – are the same ones who will prosper in a coming online world that is data-rich, yet also more surveillance-sensitive.

BDEX endows your marketing with the power and depth of human connectivity. Call 917-410-6616 or contact us to learn how marketing solutions from BDEX can help you with your present and future marketing data needs.

Marketing: How Data Drives Human Connectivity on bdex.com

Marketing: How Data Drives Human Connectivity

Big brands are using data to build better connections with their customers. Learn why user data is now a crucial part of any brand’s marketing strategy, and how the BDEX DXP drives human connectivity

Many major brands out there are using data analytics to gain valuable insights from what people are buying, their interactions with products, and other shopping behaviors. These data points then inform how they structure their marketing tactics, and the customer remains the most important part of their strategy.

But these companies often have just one way of connecting to customers, whether with email newsletters or through their website. These brands may know that data collection is important, but they don’t know how to use it to the best of their advantage. Savvy operators are finding ways to match user IDs across channels instead of just interacting one way.

Here are examples of how brands are using data in their marketing strategies to develop crucial new opportunities for connection.

Pinpointing what drives customers’ behaviors

Data analytics can now provide invaluable insight into not just what users do, but what they want. A great example of this in action is the company Stitch Fix. This online clothing retailer sends personalized boxes to customers with different clothing and fashion items, and customers can pick and choose what they keep from the selection.

Stitch Fix has implemented advanced data technology that allows them to see what the customer has been shopping for, what they actually end up buying, and what they don’t keep from the preselected bundle. The company’s technology is also able to show them why the customer chose not to keep certain items.

Homing in on user preferences

Many big brands, such as Netflix and Coca-Cola, gather as much data as they can from the customer by asking them questions along their product path. Netflix sends suggestions to users for movies and television shows based on what they’ve watched in the past. Netflix can then see what their users choose to watch and what their preferences are, and use that information to inform their strategy. This helps brands create successfully targeted ads.

Location-based targeting

Another benefit of using data in marketing strategy is the ability to adapt products to a specific demographic, living in a specific location across the globe.

For example, Adidas released running shoes that are specifically made for runners living in big cities. They used data such as weather patterns and terrain to design shoes that inhabitants would be drawn to.

Survey data

Another effective way to gather and use customer data is through survey research. This approach can reveal something as simple as a flavor preference across a population.

Mars and Alibaba paired up to evaluate consumer research using a survey, in tandem with Alibaba’s user data, which ended up showing that their consumers wanted more spicy flavors. They created a fiery version of the Snickers bar to meet this growing preference.

Integrating humorous trends

Two big brands used data to discover that their users are quirky, so they cranked up the humor in their marketing campaigns. OkCupid found when mining through user data that 888,000 usernames contained the word “cat,” outnumbering the dog lovers. The online dating company used the data in an entertaining blog post to explain why they ended the use of usernames in their app.

Spotify found that many of their listeners create weird playlist names and exhibit odd music preferences, so they build campaigns to play on that tendency. One of their ad campaigns, for instance, honored “the 3,445 people who streamed the ‘Boozy Brunch’ playlist on a Wednesday this year.”

These are great examples of how brands are using data to truly connect with their customers. Using humor can be a fun and effective strategy to connect with people of any generation.

How BDEX can help

At BDEX, our data helps power human connectivity. The BDEX Data Exchange Platform (DXP) can use customer IDs to create a multichannel strategy for companies to better reach their audience, whether through social platforms, email, mobile or postal – not just through a single venue.

The BDEX DXP is simple to use: You just decide if you want to reach mobile, email, and/or other user types, and you choose from nearly 500 different industries and over 5,500 different categories. We have over 900 billion data signals from consumers in the U.S., and those customer IDs can be linked across platforms with our 800 million connections between email, mobile, and cookie IDs.

Our platform helps brands connect with their ideal audience, making real-time targeting that much more efficient. Keep putting the customer first and fostering those valuable human connections with BDEX DXP.

To learn more about our data, get in touch with our team.

Why GDPR Won’t Stop Programmatic Advertising on bdex.com

Why GDPR Won’t Stop Programmatic Advertising

Learn the impacts of GDPR on marketing technology, and why programmatic advertising is stronger than ever

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) went into effect on May 25, 2018, and since then organizations around the world have been updating privacy policies, and consumers have become even more concerned about online transparency and confidentiality.

The privacy changes have proven to be especially relevant to marketers and advertisers, industries that already had to manage a delicate balance between consumer data and privacy compliance.

What follows is a look at how GDPR is affecting marketing technology (MarTech) and why brands are actually continuing to increase programmatic advertising, despite rumors that it was on the way out.

Impacts of GDPR on MarTech

The implementation of GDPR got many in the marketing industry talking about how it may be the end of programmatic advertising. With the stricter privacy laws, many thought programmatic would be too complex to monitor and too prone to violating the new regulations.

Because GDPR requires the consent of consumers if their personal data is involved in an interaction, it was said that it would be too complicated for marketers to have an “entirely opted-in subscriber base,” as Global Web Index put it, making it impossible to continue targeted digital advertising.

Most respondents (79 percent) in a report conducted by London Research and Truth said they were worried about levels of transparency in programmatic advertising. The research surveyed over 100 executives at well-known brands and senior marketers and only 14 percent of respondents said they had a good understanding of the portion of their budget that actually gets to the consumer. One of the biggest industry concerns was a lack of visibility into third parties.

However, programmatic advertising isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. In fact, it’s been increasing since GDPR was implemented last year. The use of third-party data on social media platforms, after a decrease following the implementation of GDPR, started rising again in October 2018. Data from Adaptly shows that 15 percent of Facebook media is purchased with third-party data and that data usage has increased almost three times since the initial decrease.

eMarketer predicts that by 2020, U.S. advertisers will see $69 billion in digital display ad spending programmatically, which will make up 86.3 percent of the entire digital display spending.

Why brands are continuing with programmatic advertising

Programmatic advertising is still going strong because it’s such an effective method. Using data like demographics, geography, personal interests, behaviors, and even weather conditions, programmatic advertising platforms can use this real-time data to identify the right audiences and cater ads to devices specific to that audience.

The accurate, real-time data that programmatic advertising takes advantage of has been the foundation to the method’s success. These ads are personalized to each consumer’s unique interests, behaviors, location, and demographics. Put simply, programmatic advertising allows marketers to put a message in front of a person based on what they’re doing at that exact moment.

In the aforementioned London Research survey, 61 percent of respondents said the greatest benefit of programmatic is the ability to target and optimize effectively. Programmatic enhance personalization and improves the overall brand experience for the consumer while increasing marketing ROI.

So how can these benefits be taken advantage of while following GDPR?

First, marketers must address that consent concern. Make it a priority to receive consent from consumers in everything on your website, including cookies, newsletters, or other subscriptions. Adaptly research shows that 3 in 4 consumers in the UK welcome the changes that GDPR brings, so they’re going to be grateful for your transparency and often willing to give their consent.

Updated privacy regulations also mean quality standards are rising. It’s thus more important than ever to put more energy into creating high-quality ads that are competitive and relevant. It’s a great time for marketers to revisit their entire ad strategy along with updating privacy concerns.

And remember that it’s impossible to produce quality ads without quality data. The BDEX Data Exchange Platform (BDEX DXP) has 900 million searchable data points on tens of millions of U.S. consumers. These data points span 19 categories of shoppers and 5,000 additional categories, such as science, sports, and health, to help marketers home in on the audience they need for effective real-time marketing.

Take advantage of programmatic advertising that’s backed by quality, accurate real-time data. Learn more about how BDEX can help you get the data you need to push your real-time targeting strategy forward. Contact us today to learn more about our advanced data platform.

One Stop Data Shopping: Find Your Audience on bdex.com

One Stop Data Shopping: Find Your Audience

By using the right tools and strategy, you can find consumers when and where they need you most

The key to a successful marketing campaign boils down to meeting consumers where they’re at – in both the purchasing process and in life. E-commerce and the widespread adoption of mobile devices have revolutionized the way information is collected, stored, referenced, and employed, with the end result being an abundance of data that defines users more clearly than ever before. Although this surplus of information is a boon to advertisers, it can become overwhelming and costly if its use isn’t approached thoughtfully.

The BDEX DXP allows advertisers to identify and refine a potential audience at every stage along a spectrum of behavior and when the data was collected. The combination of the robust BDEX ID Graph and cross-device matching authenticates customer information across devices, allowing advertisers to reach individuals at every point of their progress through the sales funnel. Using data strategically means more opportunity to target your message to reach – and appeal to – the most qualified consumers, resulting in a higher conversion rate and increased return on investment.

Find your target

Ironically, one of the greatest challenges in digital marketing in recent years is related to the proliferation of devices. According to information from Cisco, there will be an average of 13 devices per person in North America by 2021. This increase has actually made it more difficult to chart a consumer’s path to purchase as they switch between smartphones, tablets, laptops, and smart TVs to do their research and shopping.

The BDEX ID graph uses authenticated customer information such as log-in data, email addresses, and credit card purchases to recognize consumers by assigning each user a customer ID for accurate matching. This enables marketers to seamlessly reach individuals across their many devices.

Perfect timing

Timing is everything in advertising. Finding the right segment of the population to deliver your message to is only half the battle – true success involves finding the right people at the right time. For instance, say your product is a family-friendly minivan with features such as a built-in hand vacuum, ample storage, and ease of installation for car seats; something clearly designed to appeal to parents.

Sure, you could perform a broad search to find people who are car shopping and in the age range to be parents, casting a wide net; however, customizing your audience to include parents (of multiple young children) who have explicitly researched safety features and/or recently purchased a car seat would vastly help you narrow your targeting and increase conversion rates.

The BDEX Explore Data tool allows you to mine through various data sets to reach customers throughout their purchasing process:

1. Build a custom audience

In the above example of marketing a family-friendly minivan, you’d want to direct your messages to people with children who are shopping for a new vehicle. The BDEX Explore Data tool offers many creative ways to do that. The various industries and taxonomies allow you to define your audience by their actions, preferences, interests, or behavior in an easily searchable database.

For instance, start by selecting the audience class under “Recreation/Autos,” where available options include visits to autotrader.com in the last 30 days, or people searching for safety ratings. Combine that with other criteria such as age, sex, income, marital status, and number and age of children to narrow your audience for relevancy and specificity.

2. Early sales funnel

Defining an audience profile gives you the ability to create relevant content that is tailored to their specific interests. With your customer persona in mind, brainstorm keywords and topics to inspire your blog and social media content for inbound marketing.

Designing content around information that is useful to your audience – versus outright advertising – improves search engine optimization, increases brand recognition, and can help position your brand as a trusted source.

The BDEX Explore data tool can help you find people interested in purchasing a vehicle. Choose the “Shopping/Vehicles” industry tab and the “In Market for” taxonomy to provide results of 346,600,348 unique devices. From there, the “Audience class” taxonomy offers an option for Van/minivan which returns 64,689,710 results and the “Before buying a car, I will find the safety rating” taxonomy narrows your audience to 5,478,601.

Content around tips for keeping your car clean and organized, automobile safety features every parent should know, and car seat installation tips would all be good examples of organic content ideas that would appeal to parents in the market to purchase a family-friendly minivan.

3. Real-time targeting

So, you know your audience and have content that is relevant to their interests … how do you make sure they see it? The data tool uses programmatic advertising to help direct your efforts. It ensures that your display ads appear for your targeted audience on digital content they are consuming in real time.

Your parameters could include people visiting a particular blog, content tagged with specific keywords, or people watching a certain television show. The “Persona/Family” industry includes a “Has Children” taxonomy with a count of 130,154,415 devices.

Under the “Audience Class” taxonomy for the “Shopping/Children” industry, options include households which have bought children’s clothing within the past 12 months, as well as people who buy diapers or have shopped at Babies R Us within the last three months.

4. Post-purchase

Continue to build brand loyalty and increase the chance of repeat sales by cross-referencing clickstream data, geofencing data, and purchase history to personalize post-transaction messaging.

For instance, the “Persona/Auto” industry tab has a taxonomy for “Auto Class” which leads to an option to target owners of specific car makes and models. You could create a geofencing parameter to target visitors to particular car lots or repair stations and send messages about service reminders or purchase anniversaries under one of many taxonomies in the “Shopping/Vehicles” industry tab.

There is no shortage of data available to interested advertisers, but having a strategy that includes the ability to identify your audience and place yourself in their path at every section of the sales funnel will exponentially increase your chances at winning their attention – and making the most of your marketing budget.

Building your own custom audiences allows for the type of focus and flexibility that gives your agency an edge over competitors. Learn how BDEX data can strengthen your strategy.