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The 10th Annual Marketing Technology Summit (MTech) Recap

As attendees arrived and waited patiently for the MTech 2019 Summit to begin, you could feel energy and eagerness to learn. This was the 10th Marketing Technology Summit hosted by the New England Direct Marketing Association (NEDMA) but felt as exciting as if it was the first. Exhibitors, including Overdrive Interactive, Postalytics, World Innovators, Boston New Technology, Japs- Olson Company, Cape Start, DDM, and B Direct Marketing Communications, lined the back of Bentley’s LaCava Center for attendees to interact with throughout the day.

Filling the room with a notebook and pen in hand, attendees greeted coworkers, networked with other professionals, and prepared for a day full of marketing expertise. If you missed it, don’t worry we’ve got you covered with all the highlights from the day.


Keynote: Electricity and Flow

Vala Afshar, Chief Digital Evangelist, Salesforce


In today’s fast-paced marketing space, we are coming to a post-digital era where digital transformations are no longer seen as innovative. The importance of incorporating emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) to personalize and simplify the customer experience is becoming essential to differentiate.

In Vala Afshar’s keynote address, he emphasized that the job of a marketer is to reduce friction between the consumer and the product or service. In this consumer experience-led economy, companies who prioritize personalizing the consumer experience and reducing friction are creating opportunities to increase sales and gain customer loyalty.

Afshar explained that it’s important to ask of marketing, “will it increase the flow of value?” The future is upon us, and companies who use innovative technologies, such as AI, to improve trust, speed, scale, and personalization with their consumers will create value and differentiate themselves.



Optimizing the Whole Customer Journey

Harry J. Gold, CEO, Overdrive Interactive

Get the slides and full video to Harry J. Gold’s presentation here.

Moving prospects from impression to sale isn’t always an easy road. Our CEO, Harry J. Gold’s session explained the essential tactics on how to improve your digital campaigns to drive ROI.

Our CEO emphasized the importance of constantly asking the question, “and then what?” This question is useful to escalate a prospect through the sales process as it motivates the next action instead of ending the communication with the prospect. It is essential that marketing campaigns are efficient in leading prospects through the sales funnel. Overdrives’ four-step philosophy, drive, capture, convert and optimize, works as a framework for an effective marketing campaign.

Having an integrated digital marketing approach helps unify your efforts and reinforce messaging on the value of your product or service and how it solves the consumer’s problem. To escalate a target audience member to a marketing qualified lead (MQL), the desired action you want the consumer to do must be clear. Even after converting an MQL to a sale, the cycle does not end. Optimize your campaign by tracking, reporting, and engaging with consumers – this is essential to constantly improve lead quality.



Drowning in Data Yet Thirsting for Insights

Aileen Cahill, Managing Partner, Customer Ergonomics


The martech world is all about data, data, data. There is an endless amount of data available to marketers, but it turns out that the amount of data is insignificant. Instead, a business’s decisions should be powered by SMART data. Speaker Aileen Cahill first explained how to identify data as smart, then emphasized how utilizing smart data throughout a campaign provides the opportunity to understand your consumer’s behavior and problems at a deeper level.

This circles back to the importance of personalized marketing campaigns around the consumer’s specific needs. Using smart data helps define a buyer’s persona – what social media they favor, what products and services they’re searching for or purchasing, their demographics and purchase locations, and much more. Cahill discussed the usefulness of this smart data in altering and optimizing personalized marketing campaigns, and ultimately driving consumers to point of purchase.

Marketing Surveillance – Who’s Watching Who and How It’s Done

Panelists: Ian Cross (Panel Moderator), Professor; Director of Center for Marketing Technology, Bentley University, Bruce Mcmeekin, CEO, and Founder, BKM Marketing
Ted Mcnulty, Director of Performance Advertising Sales, AdDaptive Intelligence
Sarah Montague, Principal Advisor, Forrester CMO Leadership Group
Kerry Hannify, Director of Quality & Operational Initiatives, Data-Mail, Inc.


The members of this panel discussed how we gather knowledge about customers, how we use it to gain customer insight, future trends of information gathering and if we should be concerned as marketers and citizens.

They also ruminated over the importance of the impact of the California Consumer Privacy Act, and how it will change how consumers interact with marketing and digital spaces like websites. In this new age of transparency, brands will need to quickly adapt and become compliant with this new law, as it will surely serve as the basis for a national version like GDRP.


World’s Best Persuasion Tactics – From A to Z

Nancy Harhut, Chief Creative Officer, HBT Marketing


Nancy Harhut went through the ABC’s of vital tactics of persuasion-based marketing. As a marketer, persuasion should be like a second language to you. Harhut explained the importance of choice of words in everything from standard ads to email subject lines.

Do you use emojis when your texting? How about when you’re creating an email subject line to send out for your campaign? Harhut spoke about the clutter many of us deal with in our own inboxes. Most consumers take a quick glance through their inbox, not even opening the full email before habitually deleting the unread messages. Harhut touched upon the Von Restorff effect, explaining that most people scan their email to see if there is anything that stands out to them. If they see an emoji, or FREE, or their name in the email heading, then that email is more likely to catch their attention.

These 26 tactics are proven, powerful, and easy to apply to your own marketing efforts. To read more about Nancy Harhut’s persuasion marketing tactics, view her presentation here.


5 Applications of Artificial intelligence and Machine Learning for Marketing Campaigns

John J. Wall, Partner and Head of Business Development, Trust Insights


Artificial intelligence (AI) is shaping the future of marketing. AI is a growing technology that is a useful tool for marketers, but you must focus on the right things to ensure the way you’re utilizing AI is working. John J. Wall explained the five applications of machine learning for marketing: define the trends, find influencers, find clusters, attribution, and predict. These steps ensure your effectiveness while using AI.

These five steps work as a roadmap for applying machine learning to your marketing efforts. The more that companies use these methods, the more apparent the analytics will be on what’s driving MQLs and SQLs. This realization and analysis ultimately drive growth and revenue for the company.



The Rise of DMTech

Moderator: Ray Van Iterson, Marketing Strategy and Innovation, United States Postal Services
Anita Brearton, CEO, Cabinetm
Dennis Kelly, CEO, Postalytics
Larry Kavanagh, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Navistone
Michael Peach, Head of Product Marketing, Lob


Direct mail technology (DMTech) has grown significantly over the past few years, giving marketers the tools to efficiently create, target, coordinate, and track the success of an integrated direct mail campaign. This panel discussion went in-depth on how to use this new direct mail technology to make your campaigns more efficient by optimizing the way you target consumers.

Direct mail and digital campaigns resonate differently with consumers. Integrating DMTech and digital campaigns is a great way to drive consumers to a point of purchase. If a consumer who’s previously bought your product or service has stopped interacting with the brand, sending a direct mail piece about a sale is a great way to reel them back in. This type of coordination is made possible by this evolved direct mail technology. The panel explained how DMTech has allowed marketers to track and analyze who is interacting with the campaign in a new way to drive success for campaigns.


SEO Trends for 2020: How to Get on Top of Google Search

Jeff Selig, VP Search, Social, & Analytics, Overdrive Interactive

Get the slides and full video of Jeff Selig’s presentation here.

Visibility and findability on the web are essential to driving traffic to your website. From keywords to images, there are various elements to consider when focusing on SEO. Our VP of Earned Media & Analytics, Jeff Selig, conducted a deep dive on the five most effective SEO tactics for attendees:

1. Featured snippets
2. Domain authority
3. Visual search
4. Structured data
5. Site speed

Jeff explained how using these tactics can be used to optimize your customers’ overall user experience and help identify and rank your website on search engines. Ultimately, you want to rank highly, to be found by your target audience.

There you have it, a full day of marketing topics recapped! Did you attend the MTech Summit? Share your experience with Overdrive on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

Want to kick your marketing efforts into high gear? Browse our website to see our range of digital marketing services.

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