DMA's Annual Global Event for Data-Driven Marketers

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Web Design 101 – Which One Is Right For You?

Choosing the best web design for your organization’s needs is no easy feat. In fact, many marketers cite it as one of the top struggles they face on the digital front.  If the multitude of web design options is stressing you out, take a deep breath and let our DMA2014 experts help clarify!

In the clip below, Matt Powell, Chief Information Officer at KBS+, and Jeff Gray, Associate Director of Technology at Spies & Assassins, team up and discuss the ins-and-outs of their DMA2014 presentation, Responsive, Adaptive, Mobile or Native? The Wonderful World of Web Design . Jeff and Matt will focus on differentiating the pros and cons of responsive, adaptive, mobile, and native web design and when each should be used. Don’t miss this highly relevant conversation on Tuesday, October 28th from 11:00 – 11:45 AM. Register for DMA2014 today so you don’t miss it!

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Affiliate Marketing Grows Up: How Reebok and Other Top Consumer Brands Reignite Their Affiliate Channel

For any brand that has not yet tapped into the full potential of affiliate marketing, we have a not-to-be-missed presentation for you!

 It’s all going down on Tuesday, October 28th from 11:00 – 11:45 AM in San Diego, in a session titled Affiliate Marketing Grows Up: How Reebok and Other Top Consumer Brands Reignited Their Affiliate Channel.

 Join Daniel Marques, Senior Online Marketing Manager at Reebok, and Robert Glazer, Founder & Managing Director of Acceleration Partners at DMA2014 as they take a deep dive into Reebok’s affiliate program overhaul. You’ll gain insight into the obstacles brands that invest in affiliate marketing face, details on the industry’s evolution, and the specific steps that top brands such as Reebok often take to ensure their performance marketing programs are profitable and deliver incremental revenue.

 Learn more about the topics that will be covered just below, and register for DMA2014 today!

Almost all retailers and consumer companies with over $1 million in sales have an affiliate program. They are a staple in the acquisition portfolio and account for about 15% of online ad revenue and spend – five times the amount of social commerce. Properly managed, affiliate programs can have an ROI among the highest of any channel.

 And yet there’s very little information out there about affiliate marketing. It’s the biggest channel no one is talking about.

 That’s because affiliate marketing acquired a bad reputation over the last decade. Many marketing managers looked under the hood of their programs and found them full of fraud, off-brand promotion, and misplaced incentives that rewarded affiliates for delivering existing, not new, customers.

 This doesn’t have to be the case though. The industry has advanced dramatically in recent years, thanks to new technology and the role the new consumer is playing online. For many top consumer brands, affiliate marketing has become a core part of their performance marketing efforts.

 The New Generation of Affiliate Marketing

 Today’s consumer is engaged, informed, and often blogging. This makes affiliate the perfect channel for tapping into online consumers who already connect with the brand and partnering with them through blogging and content development. Many companies are restructuring their affiliate programs to incentivize, support, and reward these new partners for their promotion of the company’s brand and products.

 Brands are aided in this effort by new technology. Measurement and targeted attribution models are now available to make sure that incentives are appropriately aligned. Whereas before, commissions were often paid to coupon sites and low-value affiliates that jumped into the clickstream immediately before the point of purchase, advanced attribution technology now allows programs to reward the content affiliates that do the hard work of getting new customers to the site.

 Case Study: Reebok

 A perfect example of a merchant that has taken advantage of this revolution in affiliate marketing is Reebok, which revamped its affiliate program to better reach today’s savvy consumer and bring them closer to the Reebok brand. Through its affiliate program it created close connections with consumers and rewarded partners that created value.



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Road to DMA2014: Jenny Abreu, Director, Awards & Recognition Programs

We’re on the road to DMA2014! Each week, we’ll bring you new insights leading up to the big event in San Diego. This week, Jenny Abreu, Director, Awards & Recognition Programs, shares her enthusiasm for DMA2014 award programs, including old favorites like the International ECHO™ Awards Gala & Ceremony and new launches like the DMA President’s Award for Professional Development as well as the Mike Hughes Creativity Award. Check out the DMA Advance blog for more!

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From Platform to Platform and Screen to Screen – Using the Best Channel to Drive Your Marketing Campaign

Are you using more than one platform to drive your marketing campaigns? DMA2014 speaker Paul Cushman, Chief Revenue Officer at Dstillery, stopped by our offices last week to talk about the many screens a single company or business often uses to get their messages to market. In the clip above, he explains that campaigns that neglect to consider using different screens for different target audiences are at a steep disadvantage.

Take a 3-minute break and listen-in as Paul reviews  the most impactful forms of digital advertising, and what he’s most looking forward to at DMA2014!

Register for DMA2014 today and join Paul as part of our NEW Behavior and Research track, for a panel discussion that will look at Connecting the Physical and Digital Life of the Consumer. It’s all happening on  Monday, October 27 from 2:45 pm – 3:30pm in San Diego!  The conversation will continue to address the importance of using the right device to deploy the right message to the right consumer—and will offer tips and strategies so that you can ensure you’re doing just that.

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The Funnel is Dead. Long Live the Cocktail Shaker.

Have you ever Googled or tried to find more information about the sales funnel? Well, DMA2014 speaker Jeff Perkins has—and he’s determined that it’s dead.

 Jeff is the VP of Global Online Marketing at PGi, and we’re excited to have him joining us at DMA2014 this fall, sharing his research and analysis of his own sales team during a presentation as part of our acclaimed B2B Symposium.

 His highly anticipated session, Out with the Sales Funnel, In With the Cocktail Shaker is taking place on Tuesday, October 28th from 3:15 – 4:00pm—check out the post below for more insights on what will be covered!

 But first? Register for DMA2014. We promise, you won’t regret it.

The Funnel is Dead. Long Live the Cocktail Shaker.

Sales and Marketing frameworks can be useful.  And there is no more commonly used framework than the traditional “sales funnel” that we all know and love.  You know, the funnel where customers come into the top of the funnel, then good sales and marketing people will gradually move them down the funnel until they are ready to buy.

Wouldn’t it be nice if it really worked that way?  If it was some nice linear process where people went from step A to step B to step C and then we were done with it.  It would certainly make our jobs a lot easier.  

 But, the reality is that there is no funnel.  Sure, there’s always a beginning and an end to a customer purchase process. Customers do eventually come out of the bottom of the funnel.  But, what they do during that journey can vary dramatically by industry, by company, by function and by individual.

 I’ll give you an example.  Back when I worked at, we studied car shopping behavior.  Conventional wisdom would tell you that a shopper would start their process considering a wide range of cars that would meet their needs.  As they got close to purchase, they would then narrow down their decision to fewer and fewer cars until they settled on the one they want.  Makes total sense right?

 Well, when we did research, we found that car shoppers would actually increase the number of cars they were considering as they got closer to purchase.  How could that be?  It defies the traditional rules of the sales funnel?  Going back up the funnel rather than being pulled down by the force of gravity.

 I was fascinated by this shopping pattern and decided to do some research on the concept of the sales funnel.  I Googled “The funnel is dead” and got about 4.8 million results.  Wow!  I guess a lot of people don’t believe in the idea of a traditional sales funnel anymore.  

 So, if not a funnel, how do we think about the customer journey?  What framework could replace the funnel?  Well, I have a suggestion. How about a “cocktail shaker”?

 You see, every customer journey has a beginning and an end.  There is some stimulus that starts the shopping process and customers will eventually get to a purchase decision.  But, the path in between those two events can be highly unpredictable.  

 I did a quick analysis of the business that my sales team at PGi has won in the past 90 days to see if I could find a clear pattern.  There wasn’t one.  Some customers call and buy the same day.  Others take 6-8 weeks before they buy.  Some larger customers buy just a single license and smaller customers buy multiple licenses.  There’s just no clear rhyme or reason to it.

 My conclusion is that every individual brings their own style and sensibility to the purchase process.  Some are overly cautious. Others just go with their gut.  Some need a lot of information.  Some just need a little.

 The reality is that the sales funnel is actually more like a cocktail shaker.  A customers gets dumped in.  Swirls around in information for a period of time and then gets poured out.  

 As marketers, this creates a challenge because there’s no clear formula that will transform a prospect into a buyer while they are in the shaker.  So, what do we do?  Well, I have no idea.  But here are some thoughts.

 1) Think of your website as your virtual sales rep.  When customers engage with you, they’re likely doing it on their terms.  Studies show that buyers are about 70% through the purchase process before they even engage a sales rep.  What are they doing that 70% of the time when they’re not talking to a rep?  They are spending it doing research online.  

 2) Make sure your website has a wide range of content that will appeal to all different kinds of buyers at all different stages of the process.  A customer who is just starting the shopping process may want pricing information.  A shopper close to purchase may want thought leadership content.  Every buyer is different and will select the content that’s most important to them.  You’re job is to make it all available and easy to find on your site.

 3) Be responsive. When a prospect in the cocktail shaker does raise his or her hand, make the most of it.  Respond as quickly as possible to any sales inquiry.  My sales team at PGi has the best hit rate when they are able to get in-touch with a customer within an hour of the initial lead coming in.  It’s critical not to let leads get stale.

 Let’s say a toast to the good old sales funnel. You had a good run. But, it’s time for a new framework. While the cocktail shaker may not be as simple, it’s more realistic. So, how do you prefer your customers, shaken or stirred?

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DMA2014: Does Your Marketing Sing and Perform too?

Singing and listening to music are two of my top favorite things to do, so when I saw Live Nation’s company name under the Spotlight Session list, I couldn’t contain my excitement!

Throughout its four divisions –, Live Nation Concerts, Artist Nation, and Live Nation Network – Live Nation produces over 22,000 shows for more than 2,300 artists and has over 750 million social media fans! Without a doubt, Live Nation’s is a leader in the social and media marketing space! But what makes it so great is more than just stats. is focused on receiving feedback to improve the overall fan experience. It uses interactive seat maps, for example, that allow customers to tag themselves in their seats through Facebook. But, I think the most useful initiative for me would be the fan reviews – learning what other people thought of events I’m interested in will definitely come in handy when I go to plan the next Broadway show I would like to student rush!

I will also be checking out Live Nation’s website when there’s nothing on TV or nothing to do on-campus to see a free streamed live concert on my laptop for free! And I can keep up to date with my favorite artists with Artist Nation’s website, which allows for fans to receive email alerts when new information about an artist is posted.

Of course, as a marketer, I understand that engaging with me like this is all about distributing content to me and other consumers in order to target, welcome, and encourage positive word-of-mouth through social media. Live Nation Network has over 80 million opt-in users in their global database, which goes to show what’s possible when you engage your customers!

At DMA2014, we not only have Matt Annerino, Live Nation’s SVP of Social and Mobile Marketing, addressing Mobile Darwinism in one of our Spotlight Sessions, but also Maureen Ford, who will be talking about how amazing brand experiences impact the level of customer engagement. Matt will speak on his panel on Tuesday, October 28 at 11:50 am – 12:35 pm, while Maureen will speak the day before at 11:00 am.

I’m sure these two sessions will provide some major high notes, and bring some key changes to your marketing!

Keep checking the blog for my next post! Who knows what interesting topic, company, and or area of the conference I will be exploring next!

- Venessa Trofa, Conference & Events Intern


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