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With every passing year, brands and customers expect their mutual interactions to take a more personalized, understanding, and relevant turn. And with every passing year, Optimove looks to improve its response to these needs.
This year, Gartner recognized Optimove’s development and advanced it from the “Niche Players” to the “Challengers” quadrant in Gartner’s Magic Quadrant for Multichannel Marketing Hubs (MMH). This marks the second consecutive year with significant improvements in both “Ability to Execute” and “Completeness of Vision.”
In this blog, I’ll share Optimove’s interpretation of the 2020 Magic Quadrant results and help marketers better understand them.
In short, we believe Optimove’s positioning signifies that our product is ideal for brands in travel, retail, gaming, financial services and media seeking an integrated solution that optimizes marketing performance by suggesting underexploited segments and campaign improvements.
As usual for these reports, Gartner identified three strengths as part of its review of Optimove. (A) Our clients regarding us as a growth-focused partner, (B) our multichannel optimization capabilities, and (C) our new data platform.
Gartner defines the MMH as a technology that orchestrates a company’s communications with and offers to customer segments across multiple channels. These include websites, mobile, social, direct mail, call centers, paid media, and email.
At Optimove, multichannel orchestration occurs based on the combination of marketer-set rules with our Self-Optimizing Journeys algorithm that predicts the next-best-action for each customer, based on the maximum predicted increase to their customer lifetime value.
We believe this creates a synergy between marketers and algorithms that allows our clients to have campaigns and customer journeys optimized against incrementality for their specific key performance indicators.
In order to operate a multichannel marketing powerhouse, marketers need to be able to identify ever-more specific customer moments and deploy campaigns that answer to them. Optimove’s AI-bot, Optibot, was built with this in mind, surfacing insights and driving actions for marketers such as detecting performance anomalies and surfacing marketing opportunities.
Furthermore, our vast library of built-in reports, analytics, and trend visualizations help marketers quickly discover customer insights that can power thoughtful interactions.
All this could not be possible without a robust data platform at the core of the solution. In October, we announced Optidata, our new data infrastructure, and in February, we acquired Axonite, a realtime streaming data solution built on Apache Kafka and Confluent. Both have helped Optimove store, process, and share across the organization unified customer profiles with grander scale and flexibility, in realtime.
Similarly to how Gartner identifies three strengths, it also identifies three cautions for each vendor it reviews. Cautions are items that marketers should take into account when evaluating a vendor. This year, Gartner mentions a web personalization gap, multistep journey design, and a rigid customer lifecycle model as cautions for marketers considering Optimove.
As with any solution in the market, we all have something to work on. Optimove will always focus on providing its clients the flexibility they need to deploy best-of-breed solutions while giving them a framework to succeed in their customer marketing initiatives.
With this in mind, Optimove partners with industry-leading web personalization vendors to provide a highly personalized and synchronized customer experience. For some, not being able to have an all-in-one solution might be a downside. For others, those who prefer having a “smart hub” orchestrating “dumb spokes” is exactly what they were looking for. Our clients leverage this added flexibility to orchestrate on- and off-site initiatives by having the granular segments they create in Optimove, readily available in their personalization engine.
Similarly, marketers who prefer linear-based journey design might use Optimove’s journey builder to do so. As explained above, Optimove’s claim to fame is its orchestration engine, which combines manual and AI-prioritization to determine the best campaign, offer, and message for each customer.
Marketers who prefer a more traditional approach to journey orchestration will prioritize their manual journeys above self-optimizing ones.
And those who are more advanced along the marketer maturity curve will let the algorithm decide what each customer should receive, even if that does not include step #4 in their onboarding journey.
Last but not least, a mention of our bespoke customer models.
If this is the first time you read about Optimove, then it is worth letting you know, our data science team creates a bespoke customer model for each of our clients, based on their unique business and customer data.
This model provides the framework for lifecycle-based marketing that sits at the basis of any personalization effort.
For companies that introduce significant changes to their business, this model might require “re-designing.” In these cases, our data science team will create a new customer model that includes these changes.
We understand why some might see this as rigidity, although we prefer to see it as having a solid structure, as in the structure that supports our clients’ lofty marketing plans.
With everything we’re all going through in 2020, expectations around us have exponentially grown. Be it in the form of better customer experience (aka orchestration), a higher customer understanding (aka knowing what they want), greater uncertainty (aka need for testing), or an increased focus on understanding what works (aka measurement). We believe this recognition by Gartner validates Optimove’s answers to the challenges that lay ahead.