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Customer-First Marketing and Data: A MarketingSherpa Summit Recap

Apr 24, 2017   |   2 min read

Knowledge Center  ❯   Blog

Marketingsherpa summitThe first few months of 2017 have been a whirlwind of marketing exhibitions, conferences and expos.

Most recently, I headed to Las Vegas for MarketingSherpa Summit 2017, a two-day event featuring case studies, how-to sessions, professional certification workshops and presentations from business leaders. This year, the focus of the summit was on teaching marketers how data is the linchpin for effective cross-channel campaigns.

Here’s a summary of the major highlights from the conference.

Insightful Presentations

The conference was bookended by two great presentations by Flint McGlaughlin, founder and Managing Director of MECLABS Institute, and Jeff Ma, Senior Director of Analytics at Twitter.

In McGlaughlin’s session, “The Prospect’s Reality Gap: How to bridge the dangerous gap between the results we want and the results we have,” he examined the growing trend of customer-first marketing and how brands aim to build personal connections with their customer base. McGlaughlin discussed why businesses need customer data to accomplish their goals and how marketers can take a scientific approach to collecting this data.

To close the conference, Ma (famous for being the inspiration for the main character in the 2008 Kevin Spacey film 21) shared some entertaining stories from his past as he explained the correlation between his approach to blackjack and his approach to marketing.

In “21 and Other Numbers That Changed My Life: Harnessing the power of analytics to better understand customers and improve your marketing,” Ma echoed McGlaughlin’s statements, urging marketers to take a scientific approach to their customer-first marketing strategy. Just as Ma and the rest of the famous MIT Blackjack Team never made a bet based on their gut, marketers should never engage in “gut-based marketing.” Instead, Ma said, marketers must follow three steps:

#1. Invest in collecting the right data and making sure that data is accurate

#2. Analyze this data

#3. Implement a strategy based on the results of the data analysis

Quality Conversations

One of my favorite parts of attending these conferences is getting to speak with email marketers, learn their pain points and discuss how TowerData can help. At the MarketingSherpa Summit, the challenges I heard most often were centered on inactive users. Email marketers wanted to know …

To help support their re-engagement efforts, I reminded them that their current strategies are likely leaps and bounds ahead of where they were when many of these users first became inactive and then encouraged them to apply some of the newer tactics they’d learned – especially those discussed during the keynote presentations.

I also recommended they learn more about TowerData’s “email opener flag,” a service that allows clients to identify email addresses that may not be engaging with their brand but are still active elsewhere. With the email opener flag, brands can make sure they’re reaching out to email accounts that are still being used.

While I certainly enjoyed the keynote presentations, breakout sessions and the official MarketingSherpa Summit party, one moment that stands out most in my mind is hearing this remarkably insightful statement: “Penguins are the bacon of marketing.” In other words, if you want to make your food taste better, add bacon. And if you want your marketing to be better, use penguins. Now that’s some great advice.

TowerData has the data marketers need to build customer-focused multi-channel campaigns. Let us show you how we can help your brand with Active Customer Intelligence.

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