Insider’s View: Ad Tech & MarTech Q&A with Peter Messmer [Part 3]


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As we continue diving into the minds of Ad Tech and MarTech leaders, we had a chance to chat with Peter Messmer, Director of Growth from AddShoppers for this week’s Insider’s View.

AddShoppers is a company that helps e-commerce brands grow their average revenue per visitor by integrating on-site marketing automation with personalization and data management – giving brands a single view of their influencers and all the tools to act in real-time at the best moment.

Peter started at AddShoppers as an intern and over the past several years has advanced through the company to his current role as Director of Growth. You can connect with Peter on LinkedIn.

1. Can you tell us a little bit more about your expertise in the Ad Tech/MarTech industry?

I have worked at AddShoppers for the last 4 years, currently as the Director of Growth, but I’ve been in just about every area at the company. I’ve worked directly with brands on both the sales and client success sides, which has allowed me to learn their challenges first-hand.

2. What specifically does your company do, and how does it fit into the larger digital marketing picture?

AddShoppers is an on-site marketing platform and we work with any brand that sells online to help them sell more. More specifically, we helps brands identify who their top performing influencers are, generate more sharing, referrals, and traffic, and help convert that traffic into revenue.

To look at how AddShoppers fits Into the larger digital marketing picture, let’s take your typical IR Top 500 brand as an example.

Here’s a high-level overview of the digital marketing technologies that they are using on their websites:

  • Conversion Optimization Tools
  • Referrals & Sharing
  • Retargeting
  • On-Site Search
  • Tag Management
  • Email Marketing
  • Reviews and Ratings
  • Loyalty Points
  • Hosting/Content Delivery Networks
  • Analytics
  • Social Media Management

AddShoppers provides a specialized solution for four of the technologies listed above (Conversion Optimization Tools, Referrals & Sharing, Retargeting, and Analytics) and also plugs into or enhances some of the others such as Email Marketing and Tag Management.

Many of our clients find this very appealing because they only have to work with one vendor rather than four!

3. What types of technology platforms (data analytics, media buying, etc.) do you use every day to meet your job demands?

At AddShoppers, we use platforms like Marketo and Google Analytics to help manage our email marketing and provide analytics… plus some secret sauce. :)

4. What do you see as the single most disruptive force coming to the world of Ad Tech/MarTech?

Long term, I’d say the most disruptive force coming to Ad Tech/MarTech lies in artificial intelligence and machine learning.

One fairly basic example of this could be the potential to create a model of your email database that reacts like each real subscriber does, then sending them hundreds (or more) of variations of test emails to find the highest possible converting email. Or even the potential to send each a different highly personalized email.

And that’s not even thinking all that far out. Who knows if we humans will even be involved at all.

5. What are in your opinion the biggest challenges that the Ad Tech/MarTech industry face?

I think the amount of new platforms that are coming up and reaching scale faster than ever presents quite a challenge for marketers.

Before the internet, there were relatively few different advertising/marketing platforms and it took new ones a long time to develop. For example, 50 years ago, the main channels that marketers had were mediums like TV, radio, print ads, and direct mail.

Today, you have platforms like Snapchat that grow from zero to 100 million daily active users in less than 4 years. Not only that, but tracking the effectiveness of marketing or advertising messages distributed through their platform is notoriously difficult. Instagram is the same way, although their ad tracking is better.

Now, both individual marketers and the Ad Tech/MarTech industries have to keep up with these new platforms that are popping up with millions of users in record time and it represents a big challenge.

6. There are thousands of companies in the Ad Tech/MarTech industry and the whole ecosystem gets more complex every year. Do you have any recommendations for marketers how to navigate this space and choose the right vendors?

As in any growing industry, the MarTech ecosystem is always getting more complex, and I don’t see any end happening to that any time soon. While we will see more consolidation in the more mature MarTech segments, each new groundbreaking technology creates opportunities for new companies in the MarTech space, so it’ll always be complex. By nature, marketers need to stay on the cutting edge.

When you’re in the market for advertising or marketing software of any kind, there are a couple things to keep in mind:

A. When you’re investigating any company, case studies are always a great way to see not only how a technology is actually put to use and real results, but they can also give you a feel for how the company will be to work with.

B. Related to that last point, something we often forget about is to consider how you think a company will be to work with as a client. Since the MarTech landscape is so vast, there are many companies with similar offerings so one important thing to think about during your evaluation is how you think your day-to-day experience will be with each vendor, from dealing with your immediate point of contact to any other contacts you’ll interact with.

C. Another thing on many marketer’s minds when choosing marketing software is “should we just build this out internally?” There are advantages to building software in-house, however, today is a better time than ever to buy. While building your own tools seems like it’ll save money, in the long run it can actually be more expensive both financially and in opportunity cost. Software is very expensive to maintain and upgrade after it’s built, plus it’ll become outdated months after being built.

Key takeaway: Success is about focusing on a few key things, so focus on your core business and let the marketing SaaS companies focus on theirs (and you reap the benefits).

Insider’s View is a Q&A series where leaders at brands, agencies and tech companies opine about their use of Ad Tech & MarTech today and what’s to come.

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