Picture this: You are sitting in a meeting, and someone throws out the term big data. You think you have an idea of what it is, but you’re not quite sure based off of how it was used. So you Google it as soon as the meeting is over.
The reason this might sound familiar is because it happens so often. We have compiled a list of some of the most common terms we hear used incorrectly. We’re sorry to say that we’re not going to be covering words like fleek or bae in this blog. Our terms are all related to digital marketing. So, without further ado:
Digital transformation is really just business transformation through the use of technology and digital initiatives. With a focus on the customer being top of mind, this is a very big topic at many companies right now. While digital transformation focuses on the enterprise as a whole, we are going to focus more on the marketing part of it.
Below is a good chart explaining the building blocks of a digital transformation. You can see in the Customer Experience column how many of those initiatives directly impact marketing; however, there is obviously crossover in each column.1
The misconception here is that a digital transformation is for one department or that one department can achieve a successful digital transformation without working with other departments. That is not the case. All business lines are intertwined in a digital transformation, although it might be led by one team like marketing or IT.
This term describes a large volume of data—both structured and unstructured—that businesses collect daily. But it’s not the amount (or size) of data that’s important. It’s what organizations do with the data that matters. Big data can be analyzed for insights that lead to better decisions and strategic business moves.2
Here are some examples of data that businesses may collect that could be used to improve marketing—but big data can be used for much more than marketing, and marketing can also benefit from many other kinds of data
- Client names
- Client email addresses
- Products a client has bought
- Client location
- Client service interactions
- Client purchasing habits
It seems pretty logical that the marketing department would have access to client names and email addresses. However, the other items might be siloed in different parts of the organization. By connecting them, you can potentially improve your marketing, decrease your spend and improve your overall client experience.
P.S. It’s kind of weird to refer to your data as big data.
Omni means “of all things.” Therefore, omnichannel means “of all the channels.” Today, the client or customer can interact with a business through many different channels, not just in a physical location. Because of this, when a marketing plan or strategy is developed, it should take into account all of the channels that would be effective to reach the client. However, this is different than multichannel. Multichannel is an internal view, while omnichannel is a view from the customer’s point of view. It should be as seamless as possible to pass through each channel from the customer’s point of view. This would truly be an omnichannel approach to marketing.
Marketo explains it like this: “Multi-channel is an operational view—how you allow the customer to complete transactions in each channel. Omni-channel, however, is viewing the experience through the eyes of your customer, orchestrating the customer experience across all channels so that it is seamless, integrated, and consistent. Omni-channel anticipates that customers may start in one channel and move to another as they progress to a resolution.”3
AI (artificial intelligence).
According to Techopedia4, Artificial intelligence (AI) is an area of computer science that emphasizes the creation of intelligent machines that work and react like humans. The misconception here is often that AI is this:
While AI can be incorporated into robotics, the two things are not the same. Some of the activities computers with artificial intelligence are designed for include:
- Speech recognition
For example, one way it can be used in digital marketing is “plugging first- and third-party data into a clustering algorithm, then using the results in a CRM or custom experience system.”5
The creation and sharing of online material (such as videos, blogs and social media posts) that does not explicitly promote a brand but is intended to stimulate interest in its products or services.6
The part people often get wrong about content marketing is that they make all of the content entirely about their brand or product. If that’s what you’re doing, then it’s not content marketing; it’s just marketing—and maybe even spam.
Content amplification is the process of helping your content reach a significantly wider audience. The practice of content amplification encompasses many individual techniques, strategies and methods of amplifying the reach of your content, making “content amplification” an umbrella term for several unique strategies.7
The misconception here is generally that it is only done through organic means (the truth is it could be paid) or that you need a tool for it. Neither is the case. It could include paid and nonpaid, several different channels, a tool or no tool, etc.
Programmatic media buying, marketing and advertising is the process of the algorithmic purchase and sale of advertising space in real time or buying ad space in an automated way. During this process, software is used to automate the buying, placement and optimization of media inventory via a bidding system. Automating the process means that it can be done in real time and doesn’t rely on the human touch.8d This is not to be confused (but often is) with retargeting/remarketing. Programmatic is the “how you buy ads,” while retargeting is “how you target ads.”
Now that we’ve covered each one of these at a high level, let’s put it all together. Also, each one of these can be referred to on their own, and they often are, but I’m going to walk through them all in one all-encompassing example:
Your business is going through a digital transformation, so as a marketer, you decide to review all of the mass amounts of data you have available to you to see how you can make an impact. It’s clear that you need an omnichannel approach to achieve the best client experience. After analyzing the data and writing a strategy targeting your audience(s), you determine you need to do some content marketing. But to ensure it is found, you’ll use different means of content amplification, one of them being programmatic advertising.
There you have it. Now you can feel like the cool kid in the next meeting. Do you have any buzzwords you hear in meetings that drive you nuts? Share them with us!