Mediaocean Announces Amino Payments as First Blockchain Partner to Deliver Supply Path Insights for Programmatic Buys

Mediaocean Announces Amino Payments as First Blockchain Partner to Deliver Supply Path Insights for Programmatic Buys

Mediaocean partners with supply chain transparency innovator – coming together in a fully scaled blockchain network

Mediaocean, the foundational software provider for the advertising world, announced Amino Payments as the first partner that will utilize blockchain technology to provide the first fully transparent media supply chain, enabling spend optimization across the programmatic media.

The partnership with Amino Payments expands on several years of blockchain investments by Mediaocean focused on building trust and accountability in the supply chain. The integration will empower marketers and agencies to view programmatic supply path details tied to financial and contractual data. The inclusion of Amino Payments into Mediaocean’s applications will enhance the end-to-end ‘PO to payment’ view of contractual commitments across all media, with programmatic path and compensation transparency.

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“Mediaocean is continuing to innovate with partners like Amino Payments to empower marketers and agencies to plan, execute and measure global cross media advertising,” said Ramsey McGrory, CRO, Mediaocean. “Delivering programmatic media supply chain transparency inside the financial and contractual workflow has been one of the top requests we’ve received as we’ve innovated with blockchain. The partnership with Amino Payments will help us to deliver this.”

Between 2018 and 2019, Mediaocean executed a pilot program and deployed a media supply chain blockchain network – a consortium of eight major brands, their agencies representing five global agency holding companies, and select technology partners. The pilot captured the key contractual transactions across the media buying lifecycle, recording over 670 million dollars in media budgets.

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“Amino Payments’ mission is to bring financial transparency to digital advertising,” said Will Luttrell, Amino’s Founder and CEO. “By combining Amino’s impression-level cost analysis and supply path optimization tools with Mediaocean’s cross media management solutions, marketers will have complete and detailed visibility of their programmatic buys from purchase order to payment execution. This is a huge win for our mutual advertiser and agency clients seeking to make the most of their media dollars.”

Supply path data from Amino Payments will be written to blockchain, and surfaced in Mediaocean’s newest Media Finance, Auditing and Capital Management applications for brands and agencies. Brands and agencies will be able to view and report on more granular delivery data, specifically around supply path for digital and programmatic – this includes information around which supplier, tech, and data partners participated in a given transaction, and also the dollar allocation.

Mediaocean’s Verification APIs are currently available for integration of measurement data, including supply path intelligence, into blockchain. The integrations with Amino Payments will be ready by 1st half of 2020.

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Sealing Documents in CRM/ERP with Blockchain for Data Integrity

Sealing Documents in CRM/ERP with Blockchain for Data Integrity

Connecting Software, a Provider of Synchronization and Integration Software and Cryptowerk, a Data Integrity Company Have Released a New Solution That Seals Documents in Standard Business Software Using Blockchain Technology

Connecting Software, a provider of synchronization and integration software and Cryptowerk, a data integrity company have released a new solution that seals documents in standard business software.

Smart Stamp Document Sealing with Blockchain Technology is a simple product add-on embedded in any business application.

With the add-on, documents can be sealed with one click in any business system: CRM (Microsoft Dynamics 365, Salesforce, SugarCRM, etc.), enterprise resource planning systems (SAP, Microsoft Dynamics 365 NAV (BC), AX (FO)), document management platforms (Microsoft SharePoint, etc.). Users keep working in their familiar programs and seal or verify documents with simple actions via the new add-on.

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Such tamper-proof stamps based on blockchain technology ensure data compliance and trust to businesses and are faster and more cost-effective than current certificates of authenticity and any other sealing technology.

“There have been many talks about the opportunities of blockchain but very little real-world application. With our solution, this amazing technology can be used by companies, the public sector, industrial producers for their daily needs – proving data compliance and authenticity. We are happy that we have found Cryptowerk, a blockchain expert, who enabled us to leverage this technology for solving current business challenges”, – says Thomas Berndorfer, CEO Connecting Software.

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With Cryptowerk a secure data integrity layer can simply be added to any business system. The integration in the Microsoft environment and other systems through Connecting Software is simple to use and all type of data can be secured in one-click.

“As a data integrity specialist, we are excited to partner up with Connecting Software who specializes in integration solutions and can bring our trust layer based on blockchain technology into almost every business software”, Dirk Kanngiesser, CEO Cryptowerk.

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Everipedia and Brave Announce Partnership

Everipedia and Brave Announce Partnership

Brave to Be Featured on Everipedia Homepage, Everipedia Ads to Be Featured Within Brave

Everipedia, the world’s largest blockchain-based encyclopedia, and Brave, a privacy browser combined with a blockchain-based digital advertising platform, announced a co-marketing agreement. The partnership will initially result in a campaign aimed at boosting both brands among their respective communities and is the first step towards a deeper collaboration.

Everipedia first became involved with Brave by becoming a verified publisher in August of 2019. Brave users can support Everipedia seamlessly from the Brave browser with Brave Rewards. As part of this agreement, Everipedia will promote featured articles about Brave and Brave-related content, while Brave will feature Everipedia ads for users who opt into privacy-preserving Brave Ads.

Everipedia, an online encyclopedia featuring millions of wiki articles, uses a form of virtual currency (IQ Tokens) that rewards contributors who write, edit and vote on the credibility of articles. Brave rewards its users with Basic Attention Tokens (BAT) via the integrated Brave Rewards in the browser, for opting into viewing privacy-preserving ads. Brave users receive 70 percent of the revenue generated by the ads.

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This partnership includes:

  • Ad placement for Everipedia in Brave Ads and BAT Community homepage
  • Everipedia featured within the BAT Community, including relevant information in the Weekly BAT, BAT Community Podcast and an appearance by Everipedia staff in an upcoming BAT Community AMA
  • Articles on Brave’s community, partners, and creators featured on Everipedia’s homepage and highlighted on Everipedia’s social media
  • Brave and Everipedia working to integrate each other’s platforms into their communities

“This partnership highlights the importance of innovative products that reward user attention and participation,” said Brendan Eich, CEO and co-founder of Brave. “Brave offers privacy and an integrated wallet that rewards users and supports content creators. By working with Everipedia, we are using the power of blockchain to put users in control of their experience.”

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Both Everipedia and Brave boast millions of monthly active users. Brave provides users with a speedier, less cluttered web experience, an increase in revenue share for verified publishers and better conversions for advertisers. Everipedia’s “knowledge layer” is the single source of free, objective and unbiased information that can be integrated into any service across the globe. Due to blockchain technology, both products protect users’ privacy. Together their partnership enables users to contribute to the knowledge layer online, drive utility token adoption and protect their privacy.

“Brave and Everipedia are both early examples of how blockchain technology is changing our lives,” said Theodor Forselius, CEO and co-founder of Everipedia. “We provide an uncensorable knowledge layer for the world and Brave protects our information while browsing. This partnership is a natural extension of our vision to enable free, safe and accessible access to information using blockchain technology.”

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TechBytes with Erik Rind, CEO at ImagineBC

TechBytes with Erik Rind, CEO at ImagineBC

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How would you best describe your journey through technology?

A long and winding road. As a Graduate from The George Washington University with a B.A. in History you would not think that I would end up following the path of a technology entrepreneur. After a very brief stint working for the Urban Institute, I was lucky enough to land a job working as a technology consultant inside the Office of Government Services at Price Waterhouse. Yes, Price Waterhouse not PWC. When I started with Price Waterhouse, there were still 8 large Accounting firms and they were a long way from shortening their names to be just mnemonics.

The 8 years I spent at Price Waterhouse were the most enjoyable of my professional life, until I started ImagineBC. It was 1983, computers were just becoming democratized by becoming portable. Well, maybe not portable but definitely luggable for anyone old enough to remember the first Compaq portable PCs, which were the size of a suitcase sporting a 6-inch monitor. The work there was fascinating and the teams I worked with forced me to constantly lift my game.

After leaving Price Waterhouse, I became a reluctant entrepreneur. Having built a state-of-the-art system to process large volume payroll, human resources and benefits off the mainframe, I spent 20+ plus years playing David to ADP’s Goliath. Like many entrepreneurs, I have had my share of success and failure.

With the introduction of Blockchain technology and my awakening to the potentially world-changing opportunity of this technology, I knew I had to be involved with it in some capacity. So, I created ImagineBC as a subsidiary of the HCM company I started in 2003 and for the past 2 years have dedicated my time and energy to creating an ecosystem built on Blockchain that will allow every individual to control their personal data and most importantly be fairly compensated by third parties for the use of that data.

Tell us about your role and the team/technology you handle at ImagineBC?

I am the Founder and CEO of ImagineBC, and my role is to keep an amazing team of professionals focused on executing the mission of our company. I like to say, I’m like the guy wearing the red coat and black hat at the circus. It’s my job to keep the incredible array of talent we have assembled moving smoothly. I also act as the moral compass of the company. Once you let accountants and lawyers start having input into your dream it is easy to become distracted. ImagineBC’s mission is to help its members monetize their personal information. It is my job to constantly remind all members of our team that although ImagineBC is a for profit business, we are only entitled to earn money after we have done our job which is to help our members make money.

How was the idea for ImagineBC conceived?

I guess you can say ImagineBC was ripped from the headlines. At about the same time that I was becoming fully aware of the potential of Blockchain technology, I had arrived at a point in my life where it was no longer acceptable to just complain to my friends, family and associates about what was happening in the world. The birth of my first grandchild also made me start to think seriously about the type of world he will be living in 20 years from now and what I saw frightened me. ImagineBC is using technology to remind individuals that it is still We the People, who have the power to create change.

We can no longer trust the third parties that have driven our economy to solve our problems for us. The concept of too Big to Fail is unacceptable. The tech giants treat us as the raw materials of their factories and Government is stalled in gridlock reminiscent of a busy intersection in New York City at rush hour. ImagineBC offers a revolutionary old idea. By using Blockchain technology we are creating a community where members, despite remaining anonymous to one another, can conduct commerce directly with one another.

How many players are there in this technology space and, by comparison, what makes ImagineBC distinctive?

There are a number of other interesting startups that are working on solutions that appear to be similar to what ImagineBC is doing but these companies are typically focused on only part of the complete ecosystem ImagineBC offers its users. ImagineBC is also the only company in this space the can answer “Yes” to each of the following questions:

  • Is the solution available as a native mobile application for IOS and Android?
  • Does the solution help its users monetize their personal information?
  • Does the solution help its users monetize their intellectual property and time?
  • Does the solution reward its users in US dollars?
  • Does the solution allow users to monetize their earned rewards immediately?
  • Does the solution keep allow its users to control when their data is used and also keep their users data totally anonymous?
  • Is the solution closed loop? Meaning there can be no communication with users outside application. No emailing and no texting allowed.
  • Does the solution’s technology work to create reward earning opportunities for its members?

Do you believe the rise of Big Data has reached its peak and thus is on a decline. Are we going to experience a reckoning?

No. There is no turning back from using AI/ML technology to mine large data sets. And there is no end to the amount of data that can be mined. Truthfully, I see no reason to turn back but what absolutely has to change, is who benefits from the use of this data. I firmly believe that as people come to understand that collectively they have the power to change how their data is used, there will be a fundamental shift in the flow of money.

ImagineBC hopes to be a catalyst of this change. If you were a publisher would you rather the money you spend on Marketing and Advertising end up in Mark Zuckerberg’s hands or in the hands of the very people you are trying to reach to buy your product or service? With ImagineBC, 80% of every dollar a publisher injects into our ecosystem goes back to the very consumers they are trying to each. And even better an additional 10% gets distributed to important social causes who have partnered with ImagineBC.

Are people beginning to recognize and understand the financial value of their data? Will a new privacy paradigm emerge?

Thankfully yes. We rarely go more than a few months without hearing about some giant company having been hacked and letting our data become exposed. The only positive to come out of the hacks of companies like Equifax and Capital One is that the new coverage of these events is helping people finally become aware of how vulnerable their data is and how valuable that same data can be. Our government, albeit only at the State level right now, is beginning to address the issue by introducing and passing legislation based on the GDPR model used by the European Union. In the short term though the discussion should not be about privacy. No company or government agency can promise you that you can get your data back. My finger prints were hacked a few years ago from the Office of Personnel Management.

No Senator or Representative can ever promise me that no one else can have access to my finger prints. Instead, the debate needs to be about who should control and benefit from the data that is out there. ImagineBC thinks the answer is and should always be us. It’s our data, we should be the ones making decisions about how it is used. I do believe that as Blockchain technology becomes more widely accepted by government, there will be a time when we can start to talk about true privacy. It would have been nice if my grandson’s birth certificate, rather than becoming some digital record stored in some centralized database, could have instead been recorded on a Blockchain network where only his parents and he had the key to access it.

What types of businesses can benefit from ImagineBC?

Any business wishing to sell their product/services to a consumer can benefit by becoming a member of our community and membership is free. ImagineBC also offers each member business free access to the tools necessary to mine the data within the community. A business wishing to market or advertise a product to a set of members, directly compensates each member who has elected to consume the business’s message. Additionally, any individual who wishes to receive fair compensation for their intellectual property should join our community. Rather than relying on the vagaries of a platform like YouTube to earn compensation, ImagineBC offers intellectual property holders the right to set their own price and keep 70% of the value of their creativity.

Something you do better than others – the secret of your success?

Lack of greed. Since we started ImagineBC, we have been amazed by the volume of money that flows through our economy and ends up in the hands of faceless intermediaries. It is ImagineBC’s goal to help redistribute the vast majority of this money back to the very people whose data and creativity is being used. In 2018, $235 billion dollars was spent on traditional and Digital Advertising. These industries today use our data to surgically target us by using our data. How much of that $235 billion did you, the reader of this article receive? If you understand what I am asking, look us up at imaginebc.net and ask to become a member. Remember it is only We the People now that can effect positive change![/vc_column_text][vc_empty_space][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_tta_tabs][vc_tta_section title=”About Erik” tab_id=”1544703828363-a2e4ed67-8a79121f-faf6af07-d7a6″][vc_column_text]Erik graduated from George Washington University in 1983 with a B.A. in History. Erik has over 30 years of experience in building advanced technology solutions and has been involved in the HR services industry since 1990.

His professional track-record includes starting and then selling PowerPay software for $22 million and becoming President and CEO of Lyceum Business Services.[/vc_column_text][/vc_tta_section][vc_tta_section title=”About ImagineBC” tab_id=”1544703828500-3cc3915e-077e121f-faf6af07-d7a6″][vc_column_text]imaginebc logo

ImagineBC is a technological solutions company that believes it is a steward of its users data and not the owner. It will promote peer-to-peer commerce within its collection of decentralized mobile applications. The bulk of the revenue generated will accrue to the data owners/creators and the company will only charge a small transaction fee. The company is set to disenfranchise the “middlemen” and allow users to capture the maximum value from their own data.

ImagineBC’s business model might currently be considered revolutionary as we are leaving a big chunk of money on the table for users and not for ourselves. But we truly believe that the current power structure is untenable and the data-stewardship model is the only feasible way to proceed for businesses of tomorrow.[/vc_column_text][/vc_tta_section][/vc_tta_tabs][/vc_column][/vc_row]

China Emerges as Global Blockchain Leader

China Emerges as Global Blockchain Leader

Over the past several years, China has become a formidable competitor to the United States in several key technological areas, especially artificial intelligence and blockchain technology.  According to Chinese President Xi Jinping, in a speech to the Chinese Academy of Sciences in May 2018, “[e]ver since the start of the 21st century, a new generation of industrial revolution is substantially reshaping the global economic structure,” based on artificial intelligence, the Internet of things and blockchain.

The global blockchain technology market is big and getting bigger – in fact, it is estimated to reach USD 7.59 billion by 2024, according to a report by Grand View Research, Inc., with increased demand driven by financial services, consumer or industrial products, technology, media and telecom, healthcare, transportation, and public sectors.

Chinese firms took 57 spots in a newly compiled “Top-100 Blockchain Enterprise Patent Rankings” list, according to IPRDaily, a global intellectual property information media outlet.  UHY, an international accounting and consultancy network, analyzed recent patent filings with the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) and found that Chinese businesses filed 32 percent of all global patents for blockchain technology in 2017 with 99 patents from a total of 314 filed.  US businesses were a close second, filing 29 percent of all global patents for blockchain technology. In other words, in the world of blockchain, China is racing ahead.

China is walking a particularly unique tightrope, more challenging than even that facing the United States, because on one hand, it has taken a decidedly hostile position against cryptocurrency – particularly investment speculation, trading, and now even mining activities – while at the same time China is wholeheartedly embracing the blockchain technology underpinning digital currencies. The People’s Bank of China (PBOC) banned financial institutions from handling Bitcoin transactions in 2013, and China has resisted liberalizing its approach to any digital currency that could rival the yuan.  China does not recognize cryptocurrencies as legal tender, and the banking system does not cryptocurrencies or providing related services.

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In 2017, the Chinese government took several high-profile regulatory measures to protect investors and reduce financial risk, including announcing that initial coin offerings are illegal, restricting the primary business of cryptocurrency trading platforms, and discouraging cryptocurrency mining.  Bitcoin trading in the Chinese currency, renminbi (RMB), fell to less than 1 percent of the world’s total, from a peak of more than 90 percent, according to the People’s Bank of China (PBoC).  China’s actions halted cryptocurrency speculation and prevented widespread fraud and manipulation, sparing many Chinese investors from the extreme volatility and tremendous losses sustained throughout 2018.

Hong Kong’s Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) issued a warning to investors that tokens issued via ICO may be classified as securities, and that the Commission is “concerned about an increase in the use of ICOs to raise funds in Hong Kong and elsewhere”.  In a public notice in September 2017, the SFC urged investors “to be mindful of potential scams as well as the investment risks involved in ICOs. As ICOs operate online and may not have a presence in Hong Kong, investors may be exposed to heightened risks of fraud.”

These regulatory changes have had a significant impact on global cryptocurrency markets, since China was a major player both on the trading and mining side, but it has not curtailed China’s blockchain boom.  In fact, over the past couple of years, China has emerged as a dominant player in blockchain technology, and in some key areas, even surpassing the United States.

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The Chinese Communist Party website recently released a primer on blockchain technology that includes an overview on its key features, use cases, and challenges.  In a particularly salient quote the author exhorts: “We call on the industry peers to continue to look at the blockchain technology with a development perspective. Looking at the blockchain label from a scientific perspective, look at the blockchain industry with a strategic eye, look at the blockchain business opportunities with a calm eye, promote the sustainable and healthy development of the blockchain industry.”;

China’s central bank, the PBoC, is supporting the development of a blockchain-based trade finance platform that will streamline interbank payments and help SMBs get access to a wider range of financing tools. China’s Supreme People’s Court recently established new rules of evidence confirming that blockchain technology is an approved method for storing and authenticating digital evidence.  The Bank of China, while decisively rejecting transactions or custodial services involving cryptocurrency, is nonetheless planning to aggressively invest in the development of fintech and blockchain technology.

Made in China 2025 (MIC 2025) is a 10-year, comprehensive blueprint with an ambitious goal – to transform China into an advanced manufacturing leader.  According to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Made in China 2025 provides preferential access to capital to Chinese companies to help promote their research and development capabilities, support their ability to acquire technology from abroad, and improve their overall competitiveness.

China’s efforts seem to be bearing fruit.  According to a review by Thomson Reuters of patent applications from the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) database in 2017, more than half of the 406 blockchain related patent applications hailed from China.

In addition to China’s tech giants, like Baidu, Alibaba, and Tencent, which have been investing heavily in the blockchain, the emerging technology scene that is generating a lot of excitement right now.  For example, MATRIX AI Network, a global open-source, public, intelligent blockchain-based distributed computing platform and operating system that combines artificial intelligence and blockchain announced in 2018 that it secured a strategic partnership with China’s trillion-dollar One Belt One Road (OBOR) initiative, an ambitious state-sponsored effort to recreate the ancient Silk Road by connecting 65 countries with advanced logistics, financial clearing and payment processing via blockchain.

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The proliferation of blockchain technology, with the support and encouragement of the Chinese government, is ushering in an unprecedented era of advancement in healthcare, fintech, logistics, supply chain management, e-commerce and more.  Not so long ago, China was accused, not unfairly, of copying the world’s best technology.  But when it comes to the blockchain, it is looking more and more like the world is racing to copy and catch up to China.

MarTech Interview with Inbal Lavi, CEO at Webpals Group

MarTech Interview with Inbal Lavi, CEO at Webpals Group

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_row_inner][vc_column_inner width=”2/3″][vc_empty_space height=”40px”][vc_single_image image=”90918″ img_size=”400×400″ alignment=”center”][vc_empty_space height=”20px”][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner width=”1/3″][vc_empty_space height=”35px”][vc_wp_text]“Marketing technology can enable financial app developers to enrich users’ experience, providing quick and simple management solutions for customer’s financial needs.”[/vc_wp_text][/vc_column_inner][/vc_row_inner][vc_row_inner][vc_column_inner width=”1/4″][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner width=”1/4″][easy-profiles profile_twitter=”https://twitter.com/inbalavi” profile_linkedin=”https://www.linkedin.com/in/inbal-lavi-687a96/”][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner width=”1/4″][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner width=”1/4″][/vc_column_inner][/vc_row_inner][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width=”5/6″][vc_column_text]

Tell us about your role and journey into technology. What inspired you to be part of the Webpals Group? 

My journey started during my Master’s degree in Industrial Engineering from Tel Aviv University, where I wrote my thesis about Machine learning and Data Mining. There weren’t many companies that offered jobs relevant to my academic background, but I always knew the right job opportunity would present itself.

Before joining Webpals Group, I held several executive positions at 888 Holdings, leading 888’s business unit to ultimately become the second largest poker brand in the world. My first commercial position in the online world was in Data Mining at 888. With time, I moved into a Business Management position at the company and realized that it is the direction I wanted to follow.

Later, when the opportunity arose to become the CEO of Webpals Group, I jumped at the chance. My vision was to build a company with a solid infrastructure, enabling scalable growth, both organically and through acquisitions, in various verticals. From a niche company operating in the Scandinavian market, I have led Webpals’ drastic expansion by branching out into new markets and verticals while successfully leading dozens of multi-million-dollar M and As.

Equipped with 15 years of experience in the Online Marketing industry, I have been the CEO of Webpals Group, a world-leading performance Marketing company, since January 2014. Since taking the helm, I have transformed the company from a small startup into a mature organization. During my five years as CEO, the company has grown exponentially and multiplied its revenues.

What is Webpals Group and how does it fit into a modern CMO’s Marketing Technology stack?

Webpals Group is a Performance Marketing company, specializing in driving high-value users to online and mobile businesses. Utilizing proprietary technology, thousands of exclusively managed web assets in over 18 languages, and with over 400 employees hailing from around the world, Webpals works with partners on a performance basis which means the company only succeeds when our partners succeed. Webpals Group is wholly owned by XLMedia (AIM: XLM).

Webpals’ technology enables the company to give its users the most practical advice and suggestions, guiding them towards the products and services they want to see – ultimately saving customers precious time and money in the search for the perfect product.

It integrates into a modern CMO’s marketing tech stack by acting as the technology supporting Content Management, helping companies scale and shorten time-to-market. With an abundance of information available, the challenge is to provide the most accurate and relevant information in the friendliest way (e.g. video, tools, etc.). Advanced technology together with creativity enables us to drive a higher audience and more importantly, increase the engagement of returning visitors.

 As a woman in tech, what are the biggest growth factors in your business that you have managed to scale successfully? 

Under my guidance, Webpals has been able to set a strong foundation for our expansion activities, from both the organizational and business perspective. We have leveraged the company’s central technology and Online Marketing know-how to build successful business units that integrated their acquisitions and managed to grow them significantly.

Webpals’ acquisition methodology has proven successful in the North American personal finance sector, with our portfolio including leading financial websites such as Moneyunder30, Greedyrates.ca, DoughRoller, and more.

According to you, which businesses are fastest in adopting Marketing Technology platforms for personalized Customer Experience? 

Beyond the obvious fit of retail and e-commerce, we are seeing other industries integrating MarTech platforms to improve Customer Experience with great success. A few of the industries that have seen rapid adoption and great ROI are Gaming, Food Delivery, Travel, and Finance. Despite being vastly different from one another, each of these industries is customer-centric and sees the great potential for Personalization.

While most of the banks are committed to providing Digital Solutions to meet their customers’ financial needs, there is considerable room for growth. Marketing technology can enable financial app developers to enrich users’ experience, providing quick and simple management solutions for customer’s financial needs.

Which data points do you focus on to uncover true intent and preferences behind Consumer Search behavior? To what extent this Customer Behavior can be personalized? 

We focus on Consumer Behavior by monitoring indicators such as time on site, interaction within the site (using the tools, answering surveys, etc.), heatmap, conversion rates along the funnel, and a number of times consumers return to the site.

Using these data points, we analyze user behavior and intentions, providing customers with unique and creative personalized offers and experiences.

We also create unique content, manufactured to meet users’ needs, wherever and whenever possible. For example, on greedyrates.ca, we developed calculators and tools that enable users to find the perfect product – enabling us to segment audiences by profile. Our proprietary technology allows us to target users on various occasions or on different sites, offering complementary information to their previous searches. The results show an increase in engagement and returning visitors, as well as a 30% increase in revenue.

We leverage mobile vs desktop to get the right content into the right hands. For example, blogs are easier to read on the go (mobile), whereas credit applications need attention and focus (desktop). And lastly, in order to personalize consumer’s online experiences, we build videos that resonate with the target audience, taking advantage of special events and utilizing relatable figures to present their own experiences with the product.

How much has the Search Intelligence commerce changed since the time you first started in the tech industry? 

Search Intelligence commerce has changed drastically since I first began in the tech industry. In the early 90s, Internet-wide search was still in its infancy. Today, retailers understand they must innovate to survive, but rapidly changing technologies and tastes make it hard to decide which innovations are worth pursuing. For marketers seeking to navigate this ever-evolving space, always staying one step ahead can prove a challenge.

Amidst the ever-changing Digital Search landscape, two unassuming technologies have quietly proven themselves useful for retailers and marketers alike: Voice and Visual search. The Visual search began as a novel Computer Science demo, but as mobile cameras improve and AI gets smarter, tech giants are increasingly throwing their weight behind this unique approach to search. Forward-thinking retailers are already implementing visual search to invigorate their online presence and deepen their connection with tech-savvy shoppers.

Voice search, on the other hand, is more complex as some opt for their mobile devices over smart speakers; however, optimizing Voice search will be vital for businesses in the near future as more and more searches on mobile are being conducted orally.

Understanding the nuances of Voice search is essential to help searchers find exactly what they’re looking for when searching by Voice – and, correspondingly, it’s also how marketers can direct audiences to relevant content and identify appropriate targets for outreach. Both Voice and Visual search will be an interesting space to watch as retailers and marketers turn to new venues for e-commerce and advertising. 

What are the major challenges/pain points for businesses that fail to leverage Mobile Marketing/Automation technologies? How does Webpals Group solve these?

Developing the tools that will enable scalable growth in all verticals is one of the biggest challenges businesses face today. Webpals is a leader and innovator in the Online Marketing sector, which is a crowded and constantly evolving market. Today’s consumers are inundated with information and want access to highly-tailored content across all media channels- to stand out, companies must have a unique value. Therefore, we must always remain ahead of the curve to engage users through a wide variety of platforms and niche sites. In order to do so, we have utilized our know-how to expand into new territories and new verticals, like Personal Finance.

Webpals’ advanced technology provides accurate targeting and segmentation of audiences, helping businesses tap into the most relevant users, ultimately enabling scalable growth. Lastly, as businesses often face a highly competitive environment, automation of campaign management is critical to gaining profits.

Which markets and geographies are you currently catering to? 

We operate worldwide in the mobile, tech, finance, and gaming sectors, from the United States to Europe, MENA, and Asia.

Which Marketing and Sales Automation tools and technologies do you currently use in your current roles? 

We use in-house tools for Content Management and Data Extraction, Data Analysis and Conversion Optimization. Additionally, I use several tools to keep track of the internal and external affairs at Webpals. I start each morning looking at managerial dashboards and BI to keep up to speed with the performance of the various sectors of our business and to track our targets. Rank ranger is another useful tool for me to see what’s going on outside of the business, tracking changes and trends in the Google rankings of the sites we operate (over 2,000). 

What are your predictions on the most impactful disruptions in AI and Data Management technology on Marketing and Sales for 2019-2020? 

I believe the most impactful disruptions on AI and Data management technology will come from Blockchain Technology and Augmented Data Management. 

What startups in the technology industry are you watching keenly right now? 

I’m currently keeping an eye on Gong.io and GivingWay; I think both start-ups will make a large impact in the technology industry in the near future.

How do you prepare for an AI-centric world as a MarTech Business leader?

Events should be trackable, with user behavior being mapped and tracked, enabling us to granularly collect the data and analyze a customer’s journey, from beginning to end.
Moreover, Statistics and Data Modeling experts should turn data into algorithms. Marketers and Content teams have the tools to understand user intent. Now, they must come up with content plans to fulfill those users’ needs.  

How do you inspire your people to work with technology? 

While I try to lead by example, my team at Webpals is truly remarkable. When I began my role at the company, it was important to me that we put together a group of people that are inclusive and gender-balanced, exemplifying the essence of our mission. Creating a team of diverse and talented experts pushes each member to show what they can bring to the table, constantly striving to improve our technology and customer services.

One word that best describes how you work. 

Multitasking.

What apps/software/tools can’t you live without? 

Mobile apps: Facebook ads, Google ads, rank tracker (rank ranger) and email application of course
Desktop tools: Internal reporting tools with different management dashboards to present daily status and trends

What’s your smartest work-related shortcut or productivity hack? 

Looking ahead is always important to me, so one of the most helpful tools or ‘hacks’ is our bi-monthly roadmap reviews. These assessments allow me to understand what progress has been made so far, and plan for future technological developments, reprioritizing our projects when necessary. Internally, my business and corporate teams submit weekly and monthly reports regarding the progress of major tech projects, initiatives, and various business affairs. Each month my financial team submits a performance review, allowing me to understand where we are in relation to our budget; this enables our team to adjust our operations and targets accordingly. 

What are you currently reading? 

A book I highly recommend (from past reading) is ‘Predictably Irrational’ by Dan Ariely. This book forced me to look at my decision-making process and re-evaluate how and why we all make the decisions we do – a critical element to running a healthy organization. A Professor of Psychology and Behavioral Economics, Dan Ariely’s book changed the way I thought about thinking. By dissecting the science behind our decisions, Ariely exposes the emotions, expectations, and ethics we subconsciously refer to when making choices, in daily life and in business. 

What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?

You don’t get ahead without making mistakes.

 Something you do better than others – the secret of your success?

 Looking ahead.

Every few months the heads of our business units present me with a quarterly business review to examine the previous quarter, highlighting key successes and challenges. This allows us to learn and grow from the past, taking those lessons into account when reviewing business plans for the next quarter.

Tag the one person in the industry whose answers to these questions you would love to read:

I would love to read answers from Safra Catz, CEO of Oracle, who led 100+ acquisitions when she took over as CEO. Or, from Mary T Barra, CEO of General Motors, who worked in every position possible at her company in order to relate to each employee and learn the ins and outs of her business.

Thank you, Inbal! That was fun and hope to see you back on MarTech Series soon.[/vc_column_text][vc_empty_space height=”30px”][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/6″][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_tta_tabs][vc_tta_section title=”About Inbal” tab_id=”1501785390157-b58e162d-0ae25a4b-c27aca64-108e51b0-80edaf37-bd3d357a-6c46d712-3b68db8f-23cbc701-4bd0″][vc_column_text]Inbal Lavi has led Webpals Group since 2014. Inbal was responsible for leading all three of the company’s major acquisitions; Dau-Up, MarMar Media and ClicksMob. Her career spans over a decade in the Online Marketing industry, with expertise in Marketing Strategy, Operations, and P&L management. She holds a B.Sc. and an M.Sc. with honors in Industrial Engineering from Tel Aviv University.[/vc_column_text][/vc_tta_section][vc_tta_section title=”About Webpals Group” tab_id=”1501785390320-2d44fa50-740c5a4b-c27aca64-108e51b0-80edaf37-bd3d357a-6c46d712-3b68db8f-23cbc701-4bd0″][vc_column_text]webpals logo

Webpals Group is a leader in performance Marketing with offices in New York, Tel Aviv, and Seoul. Our sub-brands, Webpals Finance, Webpals Tech & Webpals Mobile, have been maintaining their strong position in a wide variety of verticals for over a decade. With a complete understanding that data is the force driving the industry, we exclusively own and operate over 2,000 content-rich websites while leveraging our own, cutting-edge technologies, SEO, Media, and Mobile Advertising solutions to drive high-value users to global online businesses and mobile apps.[/vc_column_text][/vc_tta_section][/vc_tta_tabs][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_empty_space height=”20px”][vc_separator color=”black” style=”shadow” border_width=”10″][vc_empty_space height=”20px”][vc_row_inner][vc_column_inner width=”1/4″][mnky_heading title=”MarTech Interview Series” link=”url:http%3A%2F%2Fmartechseries.com%2Fcategory%2Fmts-insights%2Finterviews%2F|||”][/vc_column_inner][vc_column_inner width=”1/2″][vc_column_text]

The MTS Martech Interview Series is a fun Q&A style chat which we really enjoy doing with martech leaders. With inspiration from Lifehacker’s How I work interviews, the MarTech Series Interviews follows a two part format On Marketing Technology, and This Is How I Work. The format was chosen because when we decided to start an interview series with the biggest and brightest minds in martech – we wanted to get insight into two areas … one – their ideas on marketing tech and two – insights into the philosophy and methods that make these leaders tick.

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Study Reveals Latest Benchmark Numbers and Trends for High-Performance Email Marketing Campaigns

GoodFirms Research Reveals Latest Survey Reports on Email Marketing, ORM, Blockchain Development, PPC Advertising, Content Marketing, and Software Development

GoodFirms conducted constructive surveys with global IT companies and experts to obtain parallel insights that would benefit businesses dealing with email marketing, online reputation management, blockchain technology, PPC advertising, content marketing, and custom software development.

Here is a summary of the aforementioned surveys conducted by the research team of GoodFirms:

Benchmark Numbers, and Trends for Highly Converting Email Marketing Campaigns

Email marketing has proved to bring on highest return on investments from time to time, in terms of money and efforts combined. More than 95% of the email marketing specialists mentioned building strong customer relations and selling of products/services to be the most successful email marketing goals. The average Click-Through Rate, across all geographies and industry sectors, came out to be 4.2%, wherein 53.75% of email marketers send emails weekly.

The Modus Operandi of Online Reputation Management for Businesses

The online reviews have bestowed the consumers with the highest chair in the market, leaving no option for the brands but to please them. The most important benefit attained through ORM turned out to be consumer trust with 44.4% of the affirmation from the survey participants. Also, thought-leading content was the first choice for more than half of the reputation management experts, in order to build a strategy for building a positive reputation in the market.

Marketing Technology News: Lytics Raises $35 Million to Extend Leadership Position in Customer Data Platform Market

The Ultimate Research on Blockchain Development for Businesses

The blockchain technology has brought in significant benefits for versatile industries including fintech, supply chain management, non-profit charities, edutech, government and so on. The participants unraveled the top-most trend in blockchain innovation to be Smart Contracts with 90.9% of the votes. The average time for building a basic blockchain application was evaluated to be 3.2 months and the cost for the same to be $105000.

Tips and Tactics for a Winning PPC Campaign Management

PPC advertising help businesses buy leads to a website, from search engines and social media platforms. The top PPC companies revealed Google AdWords Editor, WordStream Advisor, and Bing Ads Editor to be the most used PPC management tools for marketers. The basic cost of a PPC service plan is $430. Also, 72.7% of the survey takers said that beating the competition is the most challenging part of running a PPC ad campaign.

Marketing Technology News: A Poor Website Experience Would Cause 62% of Millennials Not to Use a Recruitment Company’s Services, New Survey Reveals

How Businesses Use Content Marketing

Quality content marketing is no more just a substance for online marketing departments, it has turned into a modern business need for standing out. On average, businesses allot 25% of the marketing budget for content production and distribution. 42.9% of the survey participants pointed out producing engaging content to be the biggest challenge in content marketing for the most sought purpose of improving search engine rankings.

Remarkably Useful Stats and Trends on Software Development

In the multi-billion dollar industry of software development, businesses prefer customized software over off-the-shelf software readily available in the market. The average time taken for typical software development is 4.5 months and the cost for getting it developed in $36000. Developers have revealed the most popular languages to be PHP, Javascript, and C# form an excellent combination with Agile methodology for efficient output.

Marketing Technology News: IPONWEB hires Moritz Wuttke to Build on Programmatic TV Potential

GoodFirms is across the world recognized as a reliable B2B research, ratings and reviews platform. It conducts surveys to provide informative insights to benchmark the enterprise activities of companies and professionals. This moreover improves its commercial solutions and match the pace of the evolving industry.

GoodFirms also facilitates the SaaS and PaaS corporations by encouraging them to participate inside the on-going research and display their strong report of work.

Partnership Between DataBlockChain.io and Virtual DBS Enhances Power of Blockchain Technology Using Predictive Analytics

Virtual-DBS

Tech Startup Datablockchain.io Presents an Ultimate Use Case for Blockchain Integration Through Their DBCC Token Ecosystem

DataBlockhain.io, a revolutionary platform combining big data, blockchain technology, and artificial intelligence has announced a partnership with Virtual DBS. A marketing industry innovator, Virtual DBS offers customer profiling and predictive analytics to deliver highly targeted digital marketing campaigns. The companies have combined forces to give clients the benefits of the blockchain, fortified by cutting-edge analytics.

As a digital marketing industry leader, Virtual DBS brings powerful big data experience to its partnership with DataBlockhain.io. By leveraging innovative blockchain technology, the alliance allows clients to access and purchase comprehensive marketing data via a secure, frictionless platform.

Brad Mitchell
Brad Mitchell

Brad Mitchell, Founder and CEO of Virtual DBS, said, “We are really excited about our partnership with DataBlockchain.io. Virtual DBS has leveraged innovative technology to drive acquisition, retention, and growth for our clients. By combining AI and machine learning with the billions of records in DataBlockchain.io, our partnership will deliver unique and powerful market intelligence to businesses of all sizes.”

Also Read: SRAX Announces Alpha Release of Blockchain Technology BIG Platform

The partnership between Virtual DBS and DataBlockchain.io will further enhance the suite of offerings from DataBlockchain.io. The firm will be the first in the marketing industry to offer customized analytics of both customers and markets that is powered by artificial intelligence and delivered securely using the power of blockchain technology. This will allow businesses to predict their customers’ behavior to maximize impact and extend reach.

Adam Mittelberg
Adam Mittelberg

Adam Mittelberg, Chief Marketing Officer of DataBlockchain.io, said, “Virtual DBS has a proven track record in the field of predictive analytics, bringing a powerful tool to DataBlockchain.io clients,”

He added, “Leveraging their expertise in analytics and digital marketing will enable our clients to accurately target their audience and reach them with innovative digital campaigns. This collaborative effort enhances the DataBlockchain.io market strengths and we’re looking forward to offering this innovative service to our clients.”

DataBlockChain Token Sale

On May 27, 2018, DataBlockChain.io launched its token pre-sale, allowing investors to purchase tokens at a significant discount from the initial launch price which will be available on 27 June.

Recommended Read: How Blockchain Technology Could Disrupt Social Media’s Stronghold on Data

Blockchain in Advertising: The Implications for Every Player in the System

Blockchain-in-Advertising

Today’s digital advertising industry faces many challenges, ranging from fraud and lack of transparency to antiquated payment models. Such challenges aren’t unique to the marketing industry. In fact, many industries, including financial services, are struggling to address these very same challenges. That’s one reason that headlines around blockchain technology are so prevalent these days.

Indeed, blockchain technology could revolutionize a number of industries. Nowhere is the promise quite as strong as in programmatic digital advertising. By 2019, Zenith estimates that a full two-thirds of global digital display ad dollars will transact programmatically. That’s billions upon billions of dollars flowing through programmatic pipes. And yet, well-documented inefficiencies, fraud and transparency problems still rage through the systems. A WPP study estimates that more than $16 billion of global advertising revenue was wasted on fraudulent traffic in 2017. Meanwhile, the Association of National Advertisers reports that only 58 cents of every programmatic media dollar goes to a publisher, with the remaining 42 cents being consumed by supply chain data and transaction fees.

Blockchain offers a solution to many current programmatic woes. However, as with cryptocurrencies within the financial markets, success hinges on adoption across the ecosystem – from advertisers to publishers to ad technology vendors. All players stand to benefit from widespread adoption of blockchain technology, but a lot of confusion still exists as to exactly what blockchain means – and what each needs to do to reap its benefits. In this piece, we’ll provide a simple breakdown for all players, depending on where they sit in the ad landscape.

Advertisers: A Path to Transparency and Efficiency

For brands and agencies, blockchain offers an independently verifiable and decentralized way to verify spend throughout the supply chain. Blockchain isn’t another layer in the supply chain. Rather, it’s a system that runs in parallel and complements existing ad delivery, data targeting and yield-management functions. All participants in the system gain transparency into the supply chain and a clear understanding of where the advertiser’s dollars are going. If the supply chain decides that a certain layer is not providing value, then as a natural progression, the supply chain reforms to the path of least resistance and greater efficiency. In short, the layers that do not deliver value are identified and weeded out.

Also Read: Blockchain Will Transform the Global Economy. But What Will it Mean for Advertisers?

What should advertisers be doing?

To reap the benefits of blockchain, brand marketers and agencies need to be looking for media partners that are embracing blockchain technology and transacting through it. Furthermore, they need to encourage existing partners that are not currently evaluating blockchain for their businesses to do so. If brands and agencies that control significant ad spends call for the adoption of blockchain to safeguard their ad investments, the rest of the industry will fall in line according to those demands.

Publishers: Decreased Hassle, Increased Reliability

Through blockchain, all impressions can run through a smart contract, with an insertion order attached, that is digitally signed each step of the way. Currently, many publishers are paid on a net 60 or net 90 basis, which can put financial strain on organizations. Through blockchain, this issue can be resolved by allowing advertisers and publishers to transact instantly based on individual impressions rather than month-end results. This means daily payments for publishers.

Also Read: How Blockchain Technology Could Disrupt Social Media’s Stronghold on Data

What should publishers be doing?

Publishers must embrace blockchain for programmatic advertising and begin to work with industry-leading providers on implementing their solutions. In addition, publishers can serve as valuable educational resources for advertiser and adtech partners on the benefits of blockchain for their businesses. By encouraging their partners to transact through blockchain, publishers can infuse their payment models with a much greater degree of speed, consistency and security.

Ad Tech Companies: Proving Value, Maintaining Relationships

Contrary to popular belief among adtech companies, blockchain does not seek to eliminate adtech partners from the advertiser-publisher relationship. Rather, for trustworthy adtech vendors that deliver value within the supply chain, blockchain represents a boon through which firms can transact easily, demonstrate their value and continue to serve as an integral part of a multifaceted transaction chain.  Plus, it enables trustworthy companies to capture the ad revenue from others which chose not to adopt due to low value or fraud.

What should adtech companies be doing?

Adtech companies should contact leading blockchain providers to discuss the process of integrating with their systems. Without a doubt, first-movers in this area stand to garner attention and new business by proactively adopting a transaction model that will increasingly be demanded and leveraged by leading advertisers and publishers.

Ultimately, blockchain will shape the future of digital advertising and many other industries. Early adopters stand to reap significant benefits by being the first to gain access to the enhanced transparency, trustworthiness and efficiency inherent in the model. For parties at each corner of the advertising triangle – advertisers, publishers and ad tech companies – it’s time to stop simply reading the headlines and start participating.

Also Read: What Blockchain Means for Marketers

Yello Mobile Plans to Solidify Its Leadership Position in the Blockchain Market

yellomobile

Achieving Growth Through Innovation by Leveraging Its Blockchain Infrastructure to FinTech, AdTech, O2O, Healthcare, and Media Commerce Businesses

Yello Mobile, South Korea’s tech startup unicorn, plans to renew its corporate identity by switching its name to Yello and expanding its market presence in the Blockchain Market.

The brand renewal to “Yello” signifies the company’s new vision and endeavors at expanding its presence in a new business area in earnest to lead the digital transformation.

Also Read: TV May Affect the Brain But Influencer Marketing Affects the Heart

It aims to achieve service innovation through applying blockchain technology in its core businesses: FinTech (Financial Technology), AdTech (Advertisement Technology), O2O (Online-Offline Commerce), Healthcare, and Media Commerce.

In preparation, Yello laid the foundation for the swift response to rapidly-evolving blockchain and advanced relevant world-class technology and expertise mainly with its blockchain specialists, DAYLI Financial Group and DAYLI Blockchain.

Also Read: AI Evolves … and Organizations that Manage Digital Content Benefit

DAYLI Financial Group is one of the subsidiaries of Yello, with three core divisions; digital currency trading platform Coinone, blockchain specialist DAYLI Intelligence, and global top 20 public blockchain ICON.

With a great emphasis on blockchain technology development and investment, and ICO advisory services as core business areas in the short term, DAYLI Blockchain is laying out a joint project with the DAYLI Financial Group under the goal of the establishment of Cypto IB, which will offer a variety of financial services from advisory services for ICO, M&A, and investment to other financial services such as issuance of derivatives, circulation, and asset management

“Yello will be a true leader in the era of digital transformation by increasing its presence in new businesses via blockchain technology. We will accelerate growth momentum and solidify the foundation for growth by reinforcing our competitiveness in new business areas,” said Sanghyuk Lee, CEO, Yello.

Recommended Read: Dunkin’ Donuts Hires Veteran Marketer Keith Lusby as Vice President, Media

Technology and Transparency: The Growing Horizon of AI, Cybersecurity, Blockchain and the Battle Against Ad Fraud

Technology and Transparency: The Growing Horizon of AI, Cybersecurity, Blockchain and the Battle Against Ad Fraud

“Talk to an expert in the tech field and they will tell you one certain fact about the future; it’s going to involve AI.” Wouldn’t you agree?

In our part 4 of the Predictions Series 2018, we make an attempt to delve deeper into the newer technologies in marketing, sales, and advertising. Untangling the bits and pieces of what’s to come in 2018, we bring insights from senior executives at Blis, HIRO Media, LiveWorld, PandaDoc, and CrossInstall.

Shifting Sands in B2B Marketing in 2018: New Avenues in Self-Service Customer Portals, Contextual Targeting, and Smartphone Metrics

When we spoke to Mahi de Silva, CEO of Botworx’ai, who predicted that marketers will undoubtedly see AI-assisted marketing go mainstream in 2018 with advanced machine learning being the key tool for success.

Mahi said, “What was once a foreign and Sci-Fi concept has become a very real and instrumental tool for many industries. While the capabilities of AI spans industries, marketers will see more effective AI-assisted marketing in 2018, powered by some real hardcore machine learning algorithms.”

Ads.txt and Fighting Fraud with New-age Transparency Standards 

Oded Napchi, CMO HIRO Media
Oded Napchi, CMO HIRO Media

Oded Napchi, CMO, HIRO Media, said, “We expect fraud to be one of the biggest issues this year due to two important shifts: we anticipate more grappling investigations on the online patterns to expose fraudulent activities that happened within YouTube and Facebook and expect a larger focus on fraud arriving from advertising (whereas today the market focuses on traffic frauds).”

End of Arbitrage in 2018? 

Oded said, “2018 will be the end of arbitrage. Yes, it is about time… ads.txt and SPO seem to be the final nail needed for closing the arbitrage world. Our concern is that the arbitrage companies will move to another shady activity in the advertising world.”

Amazon, Amazon, Amazon!

Oded added, “Last year, we expected the duopoly to extend. We didn’t expect it to be Amazon, but Jeff Bezos’ juggernaut emerged victorious. We expect this trend to continue also in 2018 as Amazon continues to grow its ad offerings, and perhaps a 4th player may thrust itself into the advertising aristocracy.”

Recommended ReadTop Insights on the CMO’s Best Allies, Content Marketing, and the Art of Story-Telling for Brands

The Rise of Blockchain Linked to AI!

Common Consensus on Blockchain Business in Existing Advertising Ecosystem

Gil Larsen, VP, Americas at Blis
Gil Larsen, VP, Americas at Blis

Gil Larsen, VP, Americas at Blis, predicts that blockchain technology would be the most sought-after market for doing business in an accelerated mode. Gil said, “By enabling marketers to conduct transactions in a secure and transparent marketplace, blockchain has the potential to solve for many industry issues. With blockchain, the end-to-end processes of booking, buying, and placing digital ad space will be recorded and stored. And, because all these transactions would be available to the public and verified by common consensus, blockchain will help bring about greater transparency and end ad fraud. Integrating blockchain technology into our existing advertising ecosystems will take time.”

Legends versus Startups: Who will Win the Adoption Race

Gil added, “Larger players will take longer to adapt, and organizations from across the industry will need to come together and agree on a common set of standards. We’ll see more and more startups adopting the technology, and the IAB and other industry bodies will begin setting some key standards.”

Blockchain: A Transaction Ledger

Further, Gil said, “Within five years, the ad industry will transition into using blockchain as a transaction ledger. And within a decade, we’ll likely see it become a new industry standard. It’s time for brands and their tech partners to prepare.”

Convergence of Cutting-edge Technology for Marketing and Sales Teams

Brian FitzGerald, PandaDoc
Brian FitzGerald, PandaDoc

Brian Fitzgerald of PandaDoc has interesting predictions on how cybersecurity, the blockchain, and AI/ML would converge in 2018 to bring better business results. PandaDoc is a Document Management Cloud Software that streamlines sales proposals, contracts and other documents with e-signatures, templates, analytics, CPQ, and CRM integrations. Brian predicts that the advances in cognitive and systems neurobiology will lead to bigger breakthroughs in AI.

Brian said, “AI technology will become more efficient and precise, leading to a broad spectrum of use cases for businesses both large and small. Chatbots will be at the forefront of this change. The way people access information will continue to shift away from text-based query to voice and visual-based queries.”

Analytics to Become Core Offering in Marketing and Sales Technology Stacks

According to Brian, “Analytics and automation will be the focus of sales and marketing departments across most industries. As software becomes easier to use and more cost-effective, more widespread adoption will occur.”

He adds, “There will be major consolidation in the sales enablement, marketing automation, and CRM spaces. There will be a rush of acquisitions, and poor performers will be pushed out of business.”

Adoption of Cybersecurity and Blockchain Technology 

Brian thinks that security concerns will continue to be a thorn in the side of SaaS companies dealing with government and enterprise level organizations. He predicts, “Custom development departments within SaaS companies will grow, as CIOs are pushed to find tools to improve upon the inefficiencies and reduce overhead. Fewer and fewer accounts payable departments will be saying, “the check is in the mail,” as digital transitions become the industry standard.”

Brian added, “Advances in blockchain technology will make “smart contracts” the next big thing. However, much work is needed before widespread adoption.”

Implementing AI for Disruption-free Customer Experience 

Peter Friedman
Peter Friedman, Chairman & CEO, LiveWorld

Peter Friedman, Chairman & CEO, LiveWorld, predicts, “Usage of voice assistants will continue to rise in 2018, leading brands to adopt another communication channel to remain connected with consumers throughout the customer journey. Voice assistants can enhance the customer experience by always being there for consumers, so expect marketers to explore ways to most effectively implement AI marketing campaigns without disrupting the customer experience.”

AI will Continue to Be a Hot Topic for Marketers in 2018

Peter attributes much of the marketing buzz to the proliferation of AI/ML technologies. He said, “AI will remain the industry buzzword for marketers in 2018. However, next year brands will capitalize on the power of chatbots and virtual assistants to remain present throughout the customer journey to better understand consumers and increase their purchasing decisions.”

Botworx’ai CEO, Mahi said, “The workhorse behind AI-assisted marketing will be chatbots, that will emerge as the key channel for customer engagement and far surpass email when it comes to targeting the millennial generation. This tactic of marketing has been dubbed conversational commerce, and it allows brands to use contextual data about their customers to interact with them the same way a salesperson would in a retail store; providing that interpersonal communication on a global scale. We are already seeing chatbot used by brands to engage customers via Facebook Messenger, Instagram and the like, and based on those results, we can expect to see more in the future.”

The Power of AI-driven Messaging Apps

“Marketers will raise expectations for establishing two-way marketing strategies next year. The ongoing dialogue with customers will empower brands to enhance the customer’s experience. Marketers will put more of an emphasis on messaging apps than social media to drive an ongoing dialogue in marketing campaigns next year.”

Advertisers Will Ask More Questions and Demand Transparency

Jeff Marshall,CEO at CrossInstall
Jeff Marshall, CEO, CrossInstall

Jeff Marshall, CEO, CrossInstall, predicts, “With advances in both programmatic and social data, advertisers will ask more questions about inventory, messages, and attribution. Achieving scale and quality for user acquisition will reign supreme, but advertisers and the industry as a whole will no longer tolerate the black boxes or fraud in the typical attribution and traffic buying processes.”

Genuine ROI from Tools that Promise Transparency

Jeff said, “Advertisers will route their budgets toward companies that promote transparency and genuine ROI will rise to the top. This will cause a shake-up among those vendors that let ad fraud slide.The industry will promote tools that really work and hold those companies accountable that built their businesses on the back of ad fraud. 2018 is the year that companies will have to atone for dishonesty as advertisers push them to answer the difficult questions.”

Striking a Relevant Conversation with Customers without Losing the Pitch

2017 was a phenomenal year for AI and chatbots in the marketing world. Though still in its infancy, AI/ML,  blockchain, and virtual assistants are most likely to make the conversations more intuitive. All that businesses have to do is plug ad fraud by setting higher standards for transparency and brand safety in 2018. This is what makes 2018 so exciting, in that we will finally begin to see the fruits of this labor and a new age for AI and marketing

Year-Ender 2017: 10 Extraordinary Martech “Moments” of the Year