Connecting Firmly to the Cloud

This year’s Salesforce Marketing Cloud Connections event was held in New York City, and it was a busy and informative week. Check out my takeaways below:

-Product enhancements from the ESPs are all about expanding the cloud and not necessarily about improving the email functionality and bells and whistles. Then again, Connections may be the largest digital marketing event but it is not an email event anymore, which continues to have many of the email marketers miss the good old days.

-The aforementioned email fraternity still exists – and they don’t like sharing. Email is as strong as ever but many Salesforce Marketing Cloud users told me they wish there was more info on how to get more firepower from the platform at this event – or have their own all about email. The major cloud marketing platforms of course have their eyes on the bigger prize of bringing more money to the cloud as they expand their suite of products.

-The journey continues – or does it? This tweet from Justine Jordan of Litmus  framed many marketers view on the cloud platforms hitting us hard with their version of the “customer journey.

-Some of the email kids threaten to steal the attention. Upstarts LiveIntent, and Movable Ink had a lot of people talking at the event as the email ecosystem continues to gather steam and demonstrate there is a lot of money to be had in the email world well beyond the deployment of email.

-One of the last digital barriers seems to have been broken down – or at least could be knocked down. Oddly, online media has been separated from so-called performance marketing within vendor walls and media budgets. Even most big agencies, you either work on the media side or you don’t. There is really much crossover and certainly not within most email and CRM programs which is odd considering where online media sits in the funnel and how it could fuel and scale email programs. Active Audiences is built on the potential for leveraging big data with an arsenal of user touchpoints. You can decide for yourself. 

Some of the savviest digital marketers are ones that want to sit in the middle of the cloud – that is where email sits – and can bridge the gap between technical requirements and business ambitions. Today’s people influencing and running email programs are a strong bunch and go above and beyond batch and blast.

If you want to check out the Twitter stream, there are some insights and nuggets to be found.

What is your takeaway from this event & where industry leaders are looking to take the email agenda?

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