When asked the increasingly popular question, “How are your marketing investments performing?”, we believe every CMO should be able to speak with speed, accuracy and confidence. In fact, it’s not just the CMO. Every marketer plays a role in making marketing dollars count, and should also be able to make sense of that spend. It’s as simple as that – and yet, getting there is sometimes not so simple.
When it comes to proving the value of their investments, marketers face a few different challenges, but one of the biggest is disparate data systems. The fact of the matter is that you simply can’t add up all your marbles when they are scattered across the floor. But in today’s marketing tech-heavy organizations, that’s exactly what marketers are increasingly being challenged to do.
In the typical mid to large sized enterprises, marketing data is gathered and housed in several separate systems, including: CRM, Marketing Campaign and Advertising, Web & Social Analytics, Finance, Procurement, Enterprise & Resource Planning and Project & Asset Management.
That’s a lot of data. Or a lot of marbles, if you want to think of it that way. And in order to measure it in a meaningful way, those marbles first need to be gathered and put into one jar.
A single system of record for disparate data systems
So how do we do this? The only way to give marketers a true view of how their marketing plan is performing is to break down the silos of information and create a single system of record that is seamlessly connected to all those separate systems.
Connecting these systems in a streamlined way has been the product team’s mission this past summer/fall and with the most recent release of Allocadia, we’ve now made important upgrades to both inbound and outbound data integration. Let’s talk about the significance of both.
The ins and outs of data integration
There are two different paradigms for data integration to get a holistic view of marketing performance: outbound and inbound.
- Outbound data integration: As the single system of record, Allocadia is the first entry point for financial target data as well as marketing planning data (in the planning stage). It’s important to leverage this planned data in order to push it to other relevant systems. Examples of this include:
- Push to PO (create purchase request/purchase order)
- Push to CRM and/or Campaign Automation (auto tie back returns data)
- Push to Project management
- Push to an Experience/Journey Designer
- Inbound data integration: Connecting to inbound data means pulling in returns from all the disparate systems a marketing organization uses, from top-of-funnel metrics like clicks, view, submissions, like from social and marketing automation systems, to bottom-of-funnel metrics like leads and revenue from CRM. By tying these together, marketers solve the problem of being able to do a cost-per and ROI analysis for their marketing efforts.
By combining outbound and inbound data integrations, we can improve planning workflow efficiencies and automate the tying back of returns data for a full view of marketing performance in marketing orgs.
Our Data Integration Partners
Our product release in July enabled inbound data integration with the release of the Allocadia Cloud Exchange, an important new data integration network which allows customers to connect Allocadia to any system quickly and easily.
This week’s product release fulfills the other half of our data integration theme by enabling outbound data integration with several of our partners including Workfront (project management), Oracle Marketing Cloud/Eloqua and Marketo (marketing automation), and the IBM Marketing Cloud.
Just a wee segue here for a moment of celebration – the IBM Marketing Cloud goes GA (generally available) this week! That means marketers can now deliver exceptional customer experiences across the buyer journey by leveraging customer data, providing analytical insights, automating relevant cross-channel interactions… and tracking the return on investment at each step of the way (that’s us!).
Now we head into fall – a time for change
As we head into a new season weatherwise, it’s also a new season for Allocadia’s product team. In the coming months we will be shifting gears and working hard to introduce new features and capabilities to enable customers to collaborate more efficiently with external groups, such as agencies and partners within Allocadia.
It’s just another step further up the path to performance to the ultimate destination of all modern marketers: marketing ROI.
To learn more about all the new data integration features and feature enhancements in our latest release, we welcome customers to watch my webinar in our Allocadia Help Center.