From ad exchanges and demand-side platforms to programmatic buying and tag management, here are 10 essential marketing teams and technologies you should know about.
1. Ad exchanges and demand-side platforms
Ad exchanges are services where advertisers can buy ad inventory from a range of ad networks using a live bidding process. Often, an ad buyer will use a demand-side platform as their interface to an ad exchange.
One of the foundation technologies of digital marketing, analytics tools provide insight into the performance of sites and campaigns. Google Analytics is the industry standard, but numerous vendors supply tools for more in-depth analytics of aspects of digital marketing, such as social media and customer sentiment.
3. Content discovery platform
The content that a brand creates – such as brochures, white papers or even articles – can form an important part of driving consideration for would-be buyers. But with so much content being created it can be difficult to get it in front of the right audiences.
Content discovery platforms such as Outbrain and Taboola promote content by giving it priority on selected pages, such as by placing it as a recommended links on the pages of other publishers.
4. Data management providers
Data is the lifeblood of digital marketing – the better data, the better decisions that marketers can make about where to spend their money. Numerous organisations provide third-party data, such as BlueKai (purchased by Oracle in February this year), which can be purchased by advertisers to better inform their ad placements.
5. Data visualisation
The rise of big data has resulted the emergence of a slew of tools to help users absorb the data they are collecting and analysing, such as Tableau and R.
A wide variety of presentation formats are available, from charts and graphs through to maps and complicated animation platforms from OpenLayers, CartoDB and Gephi. The process of taking complex data and presenting it visually such that it can be easily understood by the viewer is known as dashboarding.
The value of content to consumers is often enhanced by its geographic relevancy, and this is especially true when trying to reach consumers whose language is not the one you commonly publish in. Localisation tools such as Cloudwords and Crowd in have been created to help organisations manage the translation and delivery of content.
7. Marketing automation
Just as financial tools automated the finance function and ERP automated manufacturing (and then everything else), marketing automation tools such as Marketo and Eloqua seek to create efficiencies in marketing processes by bringing together the management of activities such as email, social media, content and even offline events.
8. Programmatic buying
Planning online media campaigns can be a long and tedious process requiring purchasing on numerous different sites to reach the desired audience. Programmatic buying tools automate this process by automatically purchasing media that matches the audience attributes and price point that the advertiser has set.
This technology monitors user’s behaviour on a website, particularly the products they might have viewed, or whether they filled an online shopping cart and later abandoned it before checking out. Cookies are then used to find these browsers elsewhere on the web and target them with display advertising.
Tags are used on webpages to enable tracking and analysis to determine how well that page is performing. Tag management tools such as Google Tag Manager or Ensighten make it easier for page owners to change and add tags to their pages.