What makes Emarsys different than other B2C marketing automation platforms? Q&A with Emarsys President, Americas, Sean Brady


Emarsys is a B2C marketing automation platform that focuses totally on retail, ecommerce, and journey. Founded in 2000, they now have extra than 2500 prospects throughout 70 nations. Customers embrace ebay, Canon, Tupperware, and Best Buy.

They compete with firms reminiscent of Zaius, Salesforce Marketing Cloud, Oracle Marketing cloud, SharpSpring, or Cheetah Digital. (Companies reminiscent of HubSpot and Marketo, on the other hand, could be extra centered on B2B.

In a crowded market, they stand out — in 2018, that they had 105% development within the US alone.

We sat down with Sean Brady, President of Emarsys America, to study extra about their platform and what makes it different than its opponents.

Sean Brady, Emarsys President, Americas.

Brady has been President of the Americas at Emarsys since April 2015. Prior to Emarsys, he spent six years at ExactTarget, which was acquired by Salesforce for $2.5 billion in 2013.

Note: This interview has been barely edited for size and readability. You also can leap to the TL;DR part on the backside with prime suggestions / quotes from the interview.

ClickZ: First and foremost, you’re a B2C marketing automation platform — do you do B2B in any respect as properly?

Sean Brady: We have B2B. If you concentrate on the distinction between the 2, B2B takes somebody and says that an individual is a lead and so they’re going to undergo a shopping for cycle that’s fairly constant. B2B scores leads primarily based on issues like title and firm measurement — you have a look at your algorithms in a different way. Our platform’s versatile sufficient that we do permit B2B firms to make use of it that method.

But on the B2C facet, customers don’t all the time comply with a constant sample. They might be in all places. They can interact with you throughout a number of different channels or gadgets, and it’s important to have a extra versatile form of platform that may have a look at and seize extra knowledge than what you possibly can on B2B.

With B2C, you’re capturing not simply enterprise knowledge, however sentiment and conduct. You’re capturing and predicting future behaviors primarily based on all different forms of engagement from the buyer. It’s a compilation of a number of contact factors that you just’re making an attempt to devour.

And I feel this is the reason you see Marketo having such a tough time going to B2C — as a result of they didn’t design it to seize that compilation of engagement from different factors. So that’s actually what we concentrate on finest.

We consider the again finish as a really strong buyer knowledge platform that’s housing all this knowledge — whether or not it’s offline stuff coming from level of sale, stock, and so forth., in addition to on-line.

We have a look at all the pieces that may be checked out from a digital engagement footprint. And we put all these collectively to create a really well-rounded, 360 form of view of each buyer.

You have to have the ability to seize billions of different knowledge factors in a platform to be able to be actually a real B2C sort of platform.

CZ: Would you say one thing related about Hubspot?

SB: Yes, and Hubspot I feel has carried out a pleasant job of simply saying they’re B2B. I haven’t seen them truly do any marketing or something to attempt to painting themselves as B2C, like Marketo did about two years in the past. I feel when you have a look at Hubspot, when you have a look at Pardot, these actually say, “We’re staying in the B2B lane.”

Read subsequent: HubSpot, Marketo, Pardot account for 50% of marketing automation gross sales: A comparability of every.

When you have a look at B2C, you’re seeing Salesforce Marketing Cloud, Oracle Marketing Cloud, IBM Marketing Cloud, and even Listrak or Cheetah Digital, who would say that they’re actually extra B2C-focused.

CZ: What are the variations between you and Cheetah Digital?

SB: The principal distinction is that our platform is designed to essentially be straightforward to make use of from a marketer perspective.

It’s organized primarily based round targets that entrepreneurs might need.

So take income as a selected goal. Underneath that, we constructed a platform that permits you to truly see different methods that align to the way you develop your income.

Another goal could possibly be to extend common order worth. Underneath that goal are ways, which is what I’d think about to be the campaigns essential to be able to drive common order worth increased in an effort to enhance your total income.

So have a look at it as a funnel, with targets being on the prime, methods falling beneath, and ways on the backside. All ways ought to assist you to obtain that top-level goal.

We constructed the Emarsys platform for retailers, ecommerce, and journey organizations to have the ability to do this — to work oriented round targets — with out having to do a bunch of customized configuration to the system.

Companies like Cheetah Digital, Salesforce Marketing Cloud, and Listrak cater to a number of industries. They provide actually extra of what we think about an open field or black field system which you could begin configuring primarily based in your business.

But as a result of we’re actually honed in on these three major markets, we had been capable of construct all of that functionality natively into the platform.

People can use it on the contact of a button and actually enhance their time to market. Time to market is a strain level for entrepreneurs as we speak — particularly in ecommerce or retail.

We’ve taken what takes generally weeks and months right down to days and even hours.

CZ: You’ve had a brand new buyer begin in hours?

SB: Let me offer you an instance. Say you might have a birthday marketing campaign, which is considerably straightforward to do. You want a date, viewers segments, and inventive.

What we’ve carried out is let you simply hit the create button within the tactic labeled “Birthday.” The phase pulls the info that’s in there, goes into the content material administration system within the background, and pulls your template in, so that you now not need to go in and create the e-mail or something.

It robotically populates, in order that in hours, you possibly can truly create it and get it up and operating. And that’s a easy one. That’s a easy sort of tactic.

CZ: You talked about the inventive. Tell me about your announcement final month of a brand new partnership with Persado?

SB: Yes, so Persado’s specialty is to make use of algorithms to take a look at different linguistic sentiments and alter accordingly. It adjusts your content material’s phrases primarily based on what appears to be highest-performing.

So after we have a look at personalization, Emarsys is actually good at discovering very focused segments, creating customized content material, after which optimizing that content material linguistically. The mixture actually creates a really refined and customized expertise.

We launched it on Feb 27, 2019 with a joint buyer known as Happy Socks.

I feel the rise in click-through fee was one thing like 90%, which is loopy. People assume it’s a false quantity.

But that’s what’s so necessary round understanding all of the elements of a personalised expertise. It’s not simply the precise time, which we concentrate on, nor simply the precise content material. It’s additionally the precise language.

CZ: You talked about Salesforce Marketing Cloud, Oracle, and IBM. Who else would you think about to be your principal opponents within the B2C house?

SB: I imply, they preserve popping up in all places. This is what’s complicated about our house.

Today, you possibly can truly create an ESP by merely utilizing a platform like SparkPost or SendGrid within the again finish — with out having your personal sending atmosphere — and nonetheless name your self an ESP.

There are firms on the market doing that left and proper. I battle even giving them consideration. They confuse their prospects — or prospects assume they’re getting one thing they’re not.

When you have a look at what we do from a knowledge perspective — the CDP — then you definitely see our personalization as an engine that goes throughout all channels.

Most of our opponents will put “personalization” in a single channel, i.e. in an e-mail. But placing that very same customized content material in other channels would require loads of guide work.

At Emarsys, on the other hand, we truly constructed personalization into our platform so that every one channels can leverage it.

So if I construct an e-mail with a sure message, I also can use that very same private message in an advert on social, in a push notification, in an SMS message, and so forth. I can use it throughout any of the channels we work with.

If you have a look at our opponents, I don’t know anybody else who does it that method. Most of them, together with the place I used to work at ExactTarget, do personalization simply contained in the channel.

CZ: What knowledge factors do you think about in personalization?

SB: It could possibly be something out of your buy sample (whether or not offline or on-line) to your shopping expertise — which we get permission for, in Europe for instance — and the way you’ve engaged.

It could possibly be your machine desire, the place you sometimes interact with manufacturers. It could possibly be the way you sometimes land on a enterprise. Do you click on on advertisements? Do you log in on to a web site? How do you get there?

For occasion, as we speak certainly one of our prospects despatched me a message as a result of I used to be shopping Champion sweatshirts on their web site for my son who’s in school. I didn’t purchase something, in order that they despatched me an e-mail saying, “Hey, are you still interested in Champion clothing?” That tactic of “Browser Abandonment” helped remind me of what I used to be doing.

The other factor we take into consideration for personalization is after we ship your message. We have algorithms on the back-end that optimize when emails must be despatched to prospects. So I’d open my e-mail at 9:00 each morning, however that e-mail might have been despatched to me at four:00 within the morning. Because of the way it lands in my inbox, I all the time appear to open it. Our system will permit our prospects to maintain sending that e-mail at four:00, understanding that I preserve opening it at 9:00.

CZ: You talked about your major industries are ecommerce, retail, and journey, appropriate?

SB: Those are the three that now we have constructed native vertical options contained in the platform for.

We nonetheless do enterprise with other verticals, like publishing, gaming, even horse racing. We go throughout verticals. But inside our platform, every retailers, ecommerce, and journey are natively constructed with ways, targets, and techniques inside.

CZ: And then for industries outdoors these three, would it not simply require a bit of extra customization from the shopper’s finish?

SB: I’d name it configuring. Depending on the acquisition sample of these other industries, you possibly can configure a number of the know-how to align to these.

CZ: What p.c roughly of your buyer base are these industries?

SB: If you have a look at journey, ecommerce, and retail, that’s about 70-75% of our prospects globally.

CZ: You’re headquartered in Vienna?

SB: Right, our headquarters are in Vienna. And then now we have three regional hubs: Indianapolis for the Americas, London for our EMEA market, after which Hong Kong for our Asian Pacific market.

CZ: What led to the selection for Indianapolis?

SB: I introduced Emarsys to the Americas, so after we had been places of work, we narrowed it right down to San Francisco, Austin, and Indianapolis. The price of doing enterprise in San Francisco is excessive and really troublesome to warrant whenever you’re making an attempt emigrate to a market. It’s simply dearer than essential. And they’re not almost as aggressive on incentives so that you can deliver your small business there as a result of they’ve so many startups.

Austin is extra aggressive on the startup facet and the incentives. But whenever you have a look at the worker base, the turnover fee within the know-how business is actually excessive. I feel persons are all the time in search of the subsequent massive deal.

When you have a look at Indianapolis, town and state had been very aggressive on how they approached us eager to deliver extra know-how right here. And whenever you have a look at the employment house, there’s a better tenure fee on common than these other two markets. People are loyal and so they’re not leaping from startup to startup. It was form of that Midwest tradition on the whole that we see and profit from.

Fifteen p.c of our staff had been the primary I employed within the US. And most of our staff have been right here for extra than a 12 months, if not two years. I’d say that 50% are two years or extra.

CZ: That’s nice. How lengthy have you ever been within the US?

SB: We’re three years in, so we’re on our fourth 12 months proper now.

CZ: But Emarsys as a complete has been round since when?

SB: Since 2000. So this will likely be our 19th 12 months.

CZ: How was the method of introducing Emarsys to the US market? What form of suggestions did you get from prospects or the market? Did you discover that there’s rather a lot much less competitors again then than there’s now?

SB: It’s been a crowded market all alongside, which I knew from my background.

We discovered was our specialty round retail and ecommerce. Before Emarsys, you didn’t meet natively-built platforms like what we had.

We have one specific a part of our analytics which we name Smart Insight, which actually helps prospects perceive the place their prospects are of their life cycle. For Emarsys, this function is natively inbuilt. But for our opponents, they’d have to purchase level options to bolt onto their software program to be able to seed it.

As we began rising within the US market, that was certainly one of our greatest differentiators — and it nonetheless is as we speak.

If you have a look at our development within the US, final 12 months alone was 105%.

Emarsys’ differentiators in a really crowded and complicated market actually have mattered to retailers, ecommerce firms, and journey organizations.

And like I mentioned, we additionally do gaming within the US. And one of many largest horse racing tracks within the US is a buyer. Those happened due to our potential to function as a buyer knowledge platform — one shopper known as it a marketing knowledge platform — which was different than any other platform he’d seen.

CZ: What drew you personally to Emarsys versus other firms that had been round on the time whenever you had been leaving ExactTarget?

SB: First off, our founder, who’s our present Chief Innovation Officer, might be one of many brightest folks I’d ever met.

He actually understood entrepreneurs and prospects and was constructing a platform that my earlier place of employment had talked about doing and by no means did. And he’d been doing it proper within the platform. It was all the pieces that I had been speaking about within the house.

The second factor is, with so many acquisitions occurring on this house, I felt that the service stage for entrepreneurs had began falling off. My job in my earlier life at ExactTarget was operating buyer success, so all the purchasers throughout the Americas had been in my portfolio. In our transition after the acquisition by Salesforce, I noticed that the identical engagement wasn’t going to occur. It was such a decentralized group that purchased us, and I actually felt like we had different approaches.

Our method had been to assist entrepreneurs assume strategically about what they’re making an attempt to perform after which present them methods which can be as consumer pleasant as potential to perform them in a platform. At Emarsys, I may do this once more.

Our founder introduced me right here due to his imaginative and prescient. And with the power to bridge a niche available in the market again from a service stage, I actually felt like we may make an impression.

CZ: Closing ideas on what makes Emarsys different than other B2C marketing automation platforms?

SB: When you truly take into consideration knowledge having particular options for retailers, ecommerce, and journey organizations, and the analytics behind it — permitting folks to see the place prospects are within the life cycle and the worth they need to a enterprise — no one’s platform does that higher than Emarsys. They must bolt all the pieces collectively to attempt to create it.

TL;DR — Summary of key factors and quotes

  • Emarsys does B2C marketing automation before everything, however also can adapt to B2B.
  • Their key industries are ecommerce, retail, and journey, which collectively symbolize 70-75% of consumers.
  • Their platform is constructed round targets first. Think of the method as targets → methods → ways. Too many other platforms make entrepreneurs begin with ways, which makes assembly targets extra complicated and time-consuming.
  • A customized expertise = the precise time, the precise content material, and the precise language. They introduced a partnership a few month in the past with Persado to optimize language.
  • “Most of our opponents will put “personalization” in a single channel, i.e. in an e-mail. But placing that very same customized content material in other channels would require loads of guide work. At Emarsys, on the other hand, we truly constructed personalization into our platform so that every one channels can leverage it. If you have a look at our opponents, I don’t know anybody else who does it that method.”
  • HQ is in Vienna. Regional hubs in Indianapolis for the Americas, London for EMEA, and Hong Kong for APAC.
  • Their US development was 105% final 12 months alone. In a particularly crowded market, they differentiate themselves.



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