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The Marketer’s Genome Project: The Benefit

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by: Eric Holmen (@eholmen)
15 March 2013

My human genes can tell you a lot about me, and enough of my genes and enough information about them can tell a skilled technician what ailments I may encounter that could harm or kill me. More importantly, modern medicine can tailor a specific, individualized cocktail of lifestyle choices and medications to prolong and enhance my life.

In other words, my genes can tell me how to die, but also how to survive and thrive. This was the first chapter in the Human Genome Project, a global private-public arms race to map the 20,000-plus genes of the human genome that took the better part of two decades.

Many scientists believe this research will go further, and that they’ll be able to identify the personality traits, proclivities, mental abilities and future illnesses of infants.

Though not as significant as a world health focus, there’s a similar movement underway in the marketing world, one that seeks to find the ideal content for each customer, craft the perfect marketing actions, and deliver extremely high ROI: marketing tailored to the “genetic markers” of the dream buyer.

Whereas the Human Genome Project is focused on studying genes and sequences of amino acids to identify what makes each person unique at the cellular level, the Marketer’s Genome Project is focused on the granular behaviors that people exhibit across all channels and media – browsing, researching, deciding and buying. In a short amount of time, these behaviors add up to millions and billions of records, allowing marketers to distinctly identify you as you, and me as me.

This detailed picture enables marketers to identify the most precise content and sequence of interactions that will tickle and tempt individual buyers in a unique way.

Silverpop is at the center of this movement, literally, with our Marketer’s Database of Record. Today, Silverpop customers are capturing limitless behavioral data – about 5 billion pieces of behavior a month, and growing. Our technology synthesizes this data into three-dimensional pictures of individuals across channels and devices – mobile phones, tablets, social media, websites, retargeting, events, etc.

As our clients learn more, they begin to automatically connect the best piece of content or series of interactions to each individual buyer. The actions/sharing/inaction of each interaction produces additional behaviors, which produce more refined interactions, driving to an idealized, individualized path to purchase.

Silverpop, while incredibly innovative, is not the first to catch on to this. Facebook is coming at it from the perspective of its rich social database and combining it with offline data from companies like DataLogix to make the ads on Facebook irresistible. Google started a shallow but catalytic movement when it began AdWords, targeting your search and browse criteria.

Adobe’s launch of Experience Manager is another example, looking at your session and geo-data to create the perfect website on the fly. In fact, CMS companies across the globe are beginning to see this emerge as a core capability. EPiServer CMS in Sweden just completed an integration with Silverpop that enables our shared customers to take the granular behavioral data from Silverpop and use it to drive a personalized, seamless Web experience based on each buyer’s prior interactions.

This is not a Brave New World dystopia for consumers. Rather, their behaviors will turn marketing “noise” into more of a symphony that’s pleasing to their senses. Marketing will be “meaningful to me” at a personal level, and every interaction will refine the ability of marketers to speak with me, not at me. Buyers will be an essential part of the feedback loop – the more buyers “are who they are,” the more the marketing will speak to the unique, individual cares of their lives.

Related Resources:
1) Video: “Personalizing the Web Experience for Every Customer
2) White Paper: “7 Digital Marketing Strategies Made Better Through an Integrated Marketing Platform
3) Blog: “Behavioral Marketing: What It Is and Why It’s So Exciting


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