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Digital News & Analysis

Doreen Lorenzo: What a Cat Herder Can Teach You About Leadership

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Doreen Lorenzo is a little quirky – and not just because she lives in Austin, Texas, the city that embraces weird like no other. Her eccentricity is mostly professional (with a nod to the fact she describes herself as a kitten herder on Twitter.)

But here is the bigger bit of quirkiness: From 2013 to 2015 Lorenzo was President of New York City-based Quirky, where she oversaw product development and operations for this fast-growing invention company.

Before that, she spent 16 years at frog design, a San Francisco-based product design and brand strategy company. For seven of those years, she was the company president, driving strategy, overseeing worldwide operations and delivery, and leading the design firm to record growth.

Beyond kitten herder, Lorenzo is a business leader, advisor to multiple start-ups and a strategic thinker. Her passion: "Helping creative people succeed."

Who Wants to Be the 'Getty Images of the Instagram' Generation?

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A crowdsourced, stock-image platform launched today, aiming to connect advertisers and content marketers. Twenty20, a Marina del Rey, Calif.-based provider, wants to become the "Getty Images of the Instagram generation."

Backed by an $8 million funding round led by Canaan Partners, the company launches out of beta today with a "mobile-oriented, crowdsourced approach to stock imagery." 

"We launched Twenty20 in 2013 with the goal of connecting digital creatives in search of authentic, real-world imagery for their marketing and advertising campaigns with content from mobile photographers all over the world," Matt Munson, founder and CEO of Twenty20, told CMSWire.

"Mobile has changed the way we see the world, and creatives are looking for content that reflects this to their consumers. Original, user-generated content allows brands to better engage and connect with their audiences, and Twenty20 offers the largest catalog of that content."

The Future of SEO is Not SEO

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Search engine optimization, as all traditional definitions describe it, is going to become obsolete. And the change has already begun.

The Internet has always been a landgrab. It started with domain name poaching and infrastructure oligopolies. Then we moved onto gaming search engines. Which, in turn, created a whole industry, built on one basic premise:

Figure out how to make Google put you on the first page.

While that strategy was relevant for its time (and still mostly is), it’s not what Google ever intended. And it’s not what the future of the Internet holds. 

BlueConic Platform Updates Connect Siloed Data Stores

Boston-based digital marketing platform provider BlueConic released updates today that are designed to help marketers connect "siloed data stores" and applications across their stacks.

The five-year-old, 28-employee company features a platform that company officials also claim enables brands to "identify, understand and interact" with customers on an individual basis.

The update is supposed to make it easier to connect marketing systems, "allowing marketers to construct a dynamic profile of any individual in real-time that pulls from a number of available sources," said Dan Gilmartin, chief marketing officer at BlueConic. "This in lieu of trying to reconcile disparate data into a cobbled together source of the truth about the customer." 

The Coming Collision of Brick and Click Commerce

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As e-commerce continues to explode across the retail world, brick and mortar (BAM) retailers are facing mounting pressure to stay relevant in a world increasingly focused on the internet. Not all of them are succeeding.

Ex-Kodak CMO Jeffrey Hayzlett Warns: Adapt, Change or Die

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Jeffrey Hayzlett describes himself as a maverick marketer in cowboy boots ... among other things.

A primetime TV and radio host, his eclectic career includes mentorship, corporate governance, brand building — and a three-season stint as a judge on NBC’s Celebrity Apprentice with Donald Trump.

A best selling author and public speaker, he was the CMO of Kodak from 2006 to 2010. I met him in 2009, when he was helping the photography pioneer reinvent itself for a world dominated by digital competition.

During his tenure, he was responsible for Kodak's worldwide marketing operations including the design and implementation of all marketing strategies, investments, policies and processes, as well as brand development, corporate communications and public relations.

Hayzlett left Kodak in 2010 and capitalized on decades of experience in business growth, communications and marketing to create his own marketing empire.

5 Predictions About Marketing Technology

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Two decades ago, a spunky little start-up called Netflix indirectly gave a big boost to marketing technology.

"This tiny company was spending more than half of its engineering dollars building its own tools in-house for marketing automation," recalled Ashu Garg, general partner at San Francisco, Calif.-based Foundation Capital, an early Netflix investor. "We thought that made no sense. Since most companies can't afford to spend that much money on engineering tools, we thought 'why don't we invest on companies that do this?'"

About a dozen marketing technology investments later, Foundation Capital is very much invested in the MarTech space.

And it's a space the VC firm predicts will undergoing "radical transformation." In 10 years, in fact, it predicts it will be worth $120 billion yearly.

"It is a shift to an all-digital world," Garg told CMSWire. "All advertising will be digital by the end of this decade. The role technology plays in marketing is changing dramatically because of the opportunities."

Discussion Point: Who Has the Best Digital Marketing Hub?

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Ask someone to define a digital marketing hub and you're likely to get a broad range of answers.

Gartner defines it as "software that spans multiple digital marketing domains (mobile, social and multichannel) to provide integrated access to applications and workflows, adding capabilities such as collaboration, data integration and common analytics."

Against those parameters, you're likely to think of legacy vendors most commonly associated with marketing clouds – Adobe, Salesforce.com and Oracle. In fact, in Gartner Research’s first-ever Magic Quadrant for Digital Marketing Hubs (registration required), those three vendors are rated as Leaders for their “completeness of vision” and “ability to execute.”

But this is an evolving technology, and Gartner expects the eventual convergence of ad tech, marketing tech and customer relationship management. So if you look past the three leaders as well as the two challengers — IBM and Marketo — things start to get a little more interesting.

The visionaries quadrant includes a mishmash of expertise. There's Sitecore, best known for its content management system (CMS). And then there's four programmatic ad tech firms: IgnitionOne, Neustar, Rocket Fuel and Turn.

Which one of these five visionaries offers the best digital marketing hub? We decided to go to the sources.

B2B Marketers: It's Time to Adapt, Be Brave, Embrace New Ideas

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Stephen Liguori wears multiple hats. He's the CEO and founder of his own consulting firm, an adjunct professor at Columbia Business School and former executive director of Global Innovation and New Models at General Electric.

He's also the global chairman of the 90-year-old Business Marketing Association, which made news late last year when it became a division of the Association of National Advertisers. The Business Marketing Association has 2,500 members in B2B marketing. The Association of National Advertisers, which has more than 630 member companies, represents business-to-consumer marketers.

CMSWire caught up with Liguori this week to get his take on the state of marketing — the good, the bad and the chaotic.

Paul Sagan: The Trick Is to Understand What Customers Want

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The fact that Paul Sagan is a very smart guy shouldn't surprise anyone. It runs in the family: He's a second cousin of the late Carl Sagan — the astronomer, cosmologist, astrophysicist and astrobiologist. 

A pioneer of the broadband and digital media industries, Paul Sagan is a three-time Emmy Award winning newsman who helped build Akamai Technologies into an S&P 500-listed tech giant. 

He joined Akamai in October 1998 as employee No. 15 and Chief Operating Officer, became President the following year, and joined the Akamai board of directors and became CEO in 2005. He held that post until he became Executive Vice Chairman and was succeeded as CEO in 2013 by Tom Leighton, the company’s Co-Founder and Chief Scientist.

Today, in addition to his role as Vice Chair of the Akamai board, he's Executive in Residence (XIR) at General Catalyst Partners, a Cambridge, Mass.-based venture capital firm that makes early stage and growth equity investments in rapidly growing companies.

Wayin Launches New Social Search and Analytics Platform

Wayin, a company that makes tools to analyze and integrate social content, today released a social media analytics and display platform designed to make it easier for digital marketers to find, understand and display social content.

The company maintains the product can help marketers organize content to better engage with their target audiences — whether those targets are by age, profession or geography.

How to Get Customers to Not Hate Self-Service

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Self-service portals are springing up everywhere.

Some customers love them, while others shudder at the thought of involving a database in their problems. At the same time many companies are doing a poor job of implementing self-service or avoiding it altogether for fear of driving customers away.

It doesn’t have to be this way. By understanding the potential benefits of a well-integrated self-service portal, you’ll be able to make sure yours doesn’t suck (and even pick up some new customers in the process).

So why consider a self-service portal?

Tealium Closes on $30.7M in New Financing

Tag management provider Tealium closed on $30.7 million in Series D financing. The round was led by Georgian Partners, with participation from Bain Capital Ventures and current investors Battery Ventures, Tenaya Capital and Presidio Ventures.

As part of the financing, Justin LaFayette, managing partner and co-founder of Georgian Partners, will be joining Tealium’s board of directors.

Tealium reported a banner 2014, with organic sales growth of 138 percent year over year and the addition of more than 200 organizations to its customer base.

We Need a Measure for Customer Effort

What the text of a particular link means to someone will be influenced by the task they are trying to complete. 

Make Your Brand Stand Out in a Crowded, Multichannel World

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For a long time, the big brands had it relatively easy. Advertise, buy shelf space, sell stuff. Then came the Internet.

With the rapid growth of global e-commerce, some of the biggest brands have found themselves challenged. Myriad new competitors offer good value at a lower price. Consumers have the option of switching brands with a click. Travelers can find the lowest airfare with a quick search.

Landor Associates has helps companies re-postition themselves in this new age, including household names like Levi Strauss, Rolex, Hanesbrands, Macy's, P&G and Old Spice.

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