Five Minutes With: Kraig Swensrud, CMO of Campaign Monitor

What are your biggest opportunities & challenges in marketing tech for next 12-24 months?

The biggest opportunity and challenge for marketers over the coming 12-24 months is digesting and implementing the complicated marketing technology landscape. There are nearly 2,000 vendors represented across 40+ categories, most of which didn’t exist ten years ago. The promise of marketing technology is magical – a solution that tracks potential customers, discerns their propensity to buy, and ultimately guides them through to purchase. However, assembling the right marketing technology “stack” today is less than ideal. At Campaign Monitor, we believe that the future for every marketer is an arsenal of simple, DIY marketing tools that seamlessly work together, and we are laser focused on delivering this vision.

What keeps your clients up at night?

We serve a lot of growing SMBs like Birchbox and RipCurl, as well as the San Diego Chargers, and digital agencies that have clients like Foo Fighters, GE, Nike and Pret A Manger. They don’t have huge marketing teams, so they’re constantly thinking about how they can do more with less time, less money, and less manpower.

What’s the hardest thing to educate clients about?

Many marketers now think digital first, but it’s difficult to educate everyone that data and tracking are paramount. The consistent results that digital marketing provides is driving an increase in marketing budgets, but it’s equally making marketers more accountable than ever before. Every marketer should be able to account for how every marketing dollar is spent, how it performed, and how many customers were impacted or acquired. That level of digital marketing is powerful and core to why marketers should love data. It’s this famous thinking from Optimizely that says decisions should be made based upon data, not just the H.I.P.P.O. (highest paid person in the room’s opinion).

What are some unmet needs in marketing technology landscape?

In the marketing technology landscape, we see a lot of companies trying to be everything to everyone. With that kind of technology, marketing becomes heavily dependent upon IT and developers, and that makes getting to the marketing part hard. As a result, we’re seeing a DIY movement–technology that marketers can use to create beautiful, on-brand messages, all on their own. Marketing technology categories are now being led by companies that drive simplicity like like Adroll, Crazy Egg, Google Adwords, Google Display, Optimizely, Unbounce, Vimeo, YouTube, and our own Campaign Monitor and GetFeedback products. The market is demanding more simplicity across every category, which is why 2016 is the year of the DIY marketer.

What social network do you anticipate accelerating growth in the next year?

Instagram continues to dominate and it’s taught us all that people love imagery. We want to see big, beautiful images in our news feed, and other social networks like Facebook and Twitter have been playing catchup. Engaging an audience with big, beautiful, relevant imagery isn’t just transforming social networks, it’s becoming paramount to core marketing technologies like websites, email marketing, and content marketing.

–Kraig Swensrud is CMO of Campaign Monitor

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