It seems like every few months a new buzzword gets thrown around and this month’s buzzword is MAdTech. “Have you heard about MAdTech? It’s going to be game changing!!” Oh really? While I appreciate the excitement that the buzz creates, the excitement seems to revolve more around the hopes of change than around utilizing a viable solution and innovative technique to get results.
So, what exactly is MAdtech? Well, to put it concisely: it is the combination of Marketing technology and Advertising technology, hence “M+Ad = MAd”.1 Let’s examine what MAdtech means for the automotive industry, and how your dealership can smash the competition with this powerful capability.
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Marketing Technology – The First Piece of the Puzzle
The technological revolution has contributed to explosive growth in the marketing technology. Marketing is a mandatory arm of any successful business and technological capabilities have opened the flood gates for new companies trying to provide innovative solutions. In the last 6 years, the marketing technology landscape has grown from 150 companies, up to nearly 4,000!2
This extreme growth alludes to a couple key findings:
1. There must be a large demand for this sector to grow so quickly.
2. There must be a plethora of effective and unique capabilities available for so many companies to be able to differentiate themselves from the competition.
From a consumer’s perspective, this is great news! It tells me that there should be a unique marketing solution for any specific niche.
Most dealers are familiar with marketing technology in the form of a CRM (Customer Relationship Management).3 This technology allows dealers to keep track of their current and existing customers. CRM technology allows for the storing of pertinent marketing information, but the real power comes from how dealers can use this data to reach their audience. Other popular marketing tools dealers may leverage include: email automation, conversion optimization, and website tracking software such as Google Analytics.
Advertising Technology – Reaching Customers Outside of Your CRM
The main difference between marketing and advertising comes down to the audience. Marketing typically refers to connecting with a “known” audience. A “known” audience may include: customers identified via CRM, customer lists acquired via third party providers, segmented audiences of past website visitors, etc. Essentially, we are marketing towards customers that we have identified or segmented intelligently.
Advertising typically refers to connecting with an “unknown” audience. This doesn’t mean that we are just targeting people blindly, quite the opposite! We may not know our audience by their name, phone number, address, etc. (not yet at least), but we can identify their intent. We can utilize paid search advertising and serve our ads to people who are actively searching for our product or service. We can take advantage or the relationship that Polk has built with Facebook, and target identified in-market audiences across Facebook feeds. Even across the Google display network we have the ability of identifying audiences of consumers who are in-market for specific vehicles.
There are four primary types of advertising technologies: Data Management Platforms (DMPs), Demand-Side Platforms (DSPs), Supply-Side Platforms (SSPs), and Ad Exchanges.5 A Data Management Platform is essentially a data warehouse or customer segment repository. A solid DMP will have access to a large pool of cookies, of which an advertiser can utilize to target specific audiences.
Demand-Side Platforms allow advertisers to purchase ad types in an automated fashion. These platforms are revolutionizing the digital marketing landscape. This automated process is not only more efficient, but also directly correlates to lower ad costs. Advertisers can buy impressions from various published websites, and target users based upon specific browsing history. Supply-Side Platforms allow publishers to connect their inventory with multiple ad exchanges, and work in conjunction with Demand-Side Platforms. Supply-Side Platforms will offer the impressions that are in turn purchased from the Demand-Side Platforms.
Probably the most commonly known advertising technology is an ad exchange. The most popular ad exchange being Google. It’s basically an online marketplace that advertisers can buy and sell digital ads through. Google search network offers the ability to bid on paid search keywords, and serve your ads to users who have matched their search query. The Google Display Network reaches over 90% of internet users worldwide.6
As the internet continues to evolve we can anticipate advertising technology to constantly being on the cusp of advancement. Kaizen is a Japanese business philosophy that focuses around the concept of continuous improvement, and you can believe that this concept is taken to heart across the advertising and marketing technology sectors.7
MAd Technology – Connecting the Dots Between Marketing & Advertising
What makes MAdTech so attractive arises from the potential implications of combining two very powerful technologies. But how exactly can the two work together? Let’s examine a real-life example.
Let’s assume that you manage a Honda dealership, and that you have an upcoming sales event. You want to promote this event out to your existing customers and database, but also conquest customers who are in-market to buy a new vehicle. Well on capability that we could leverage is the power of Gmail. Gmail by itself is already very attractive. You have the ability to target over 1 billion active monthly users for less than $0.25 per click (on average).8 But one very powerful capability that Gmail offers is the ability to target a specific customer list. You could upload you target list into AdWords, and it will match back the users who also have a Google account. When those users check their email across the Gmail interface they would be eligible to see an ad for your sales event. You are combining the marketing technology of your CRM, with the advertising technology of an ad exchange, and together you are utilizing marketing and advertising technology! This combination has proven to produce exceptional and cost-effective results.
Perhaps you would like to reach your audience across Facebook. Again, you have the ability to pull a specific customer list, and match back this list into Facebook to create a custom audience. But let’s suppose that instead of a sales event, you would like to promote a service clinic. You can not only target a custom audience list, but also refine your audience even further by targeting current owners of Honda makes, who are also in-market as a service buyer! Additionally, you can remarket to your non-converting site visitors, with exclusive incentives that may help them reconsider your original offer.9
As I’m sure you’ve realized by now, MAdTech is changing the game for advertisers and marketers, and we can fully expect these capabilities to expand into the future.
How to Win with MAdTech
The first key to winning is evaluating your current strategy. Do you have marketing technology that you can utilize? Are you currently running digital advertising? How can you connect the dots for your business to ensure that you meet your dealership goals?
The next step is staying informed, and learning about all the capabilities that are available to you. Maybe you are already halfway there, but you need some extra refinement to take your advertising to the next level. But maybe you just don’t have the time? Or maybe all this digital strategy mumbo jumbo just isn’t for you.
Regardless of where you currently stand in this process, J&L marketing is happy to help. We have several decades of both automotive and digital experience, and our solutions are customized for your performance needs. Whether you just have a few questions you would like answered, or are interested in a free strategy consultation, we are confident that our team of innovative solution solvers can help you achieve your goals.