Marketing Tech Across the Pond

Read the first part here.

I’d learned that the market for marketing technology in the U.K. lags behind the U.S. because of budget restrictions and a consonant skill shortage. Related to that, both brand marketers and tech vendors were focused more on customer retention, less on acquisition — in the latter case, because of less pressure from investors to build a mass market swiftly. But I still needed to flesh out this relatively conservative picture. What tech needs were at the forefront of U.K. marketers’ minds, and how had this changed over the years?

From past to present

Jonny Rose at Idio was my history tutor. In the U.K., marketing tech really started ten years ago with social media tools: “Brandwatch, Buddy Media, that’s what emerged. People were still using email contact databases, of course. Five years on,  and suddenly mar tech became a byword for content marketing tools like Taboola and Outbrain. They brought content marketing and management, calendars, auto-publishing, workflows. Everything then galvanized around the idea of content marketing. For the past two or three years, I’d say mar tech has become a byword for marketing automation, like Pardot and Eloqua, with single point solutions beginning to consolidate into one stack and being amalgamated into Salesforce or things like that.”

Rose, of course, has a strong B2B focus in his thinking. “Also for the last ten years in the U.K., lead gen and ABM have been  the two watchwords. They are crystallized as practices, very formalized and structured. Necessarily that has come with an appreciation of the marketing tech which supports those practices. We now have strong categories of email service providers, marketing automation, and campaign management. These have become much more defined in the UK marketer’s mind than perhaps ten years ago, because of the understanding of lead gen or ABM as a practice.”

Interestingly, he had named more U.S.-based vendors than anything home-grown. “There are certainly U.K. marketing tech companies. He mentioned dotmailer, founded in his home town, Croydon, and now part of dotdigital: “A solid marketing automation platform with a sizeable market cap, really making an impact both locally and globally. But if you really want a home-grown story there’s social;  you have Brandwatch and Conversocial, two examples of notable companies.”

As for what’s happening now: “It’s with people plugging data into your stack, like Lead Forensics, Growth Intelligence.” The kinds of data involved include account based data sources, and third party intent data, Bombora-style. Lead Forensics, for example, handles lead prioritization, and plugs into Marketo to trigger nurture campaigns. “These are companies,” said Rose, “doing neat enterprise things, rather than peripheral use cases.”

The robots aren’t coming

Jordan Adams of MarTech Tracker started by highlighted for me some big thematic differences between the U.K. and the U.S.. Nevertheless, his commentaryon the space matches Rose’s closely — although for the most part he cited U.S. vendors succeeding in the U.K. market rather than home-grown solutions. As for the big differences: “Every conference I go to in the U.S.,” he said, “is about ‘the robots are coming.’ AI. This is just not the case in the U.K.. Nobody is bothered about blockchain in the UK. Nobody. It won’t appear on any agenda; nobody is talking about it. It’s not that we’re ignorant of it. No-one cares. The whole AI piece; it’s just not a hot topic. So the robots don’t seem to be coming over here.”

So what are U.K. marketers actually interested in? “A couple of groups of marketing challenges are pretty well known in the UK. Data management and data intelligence, and underpinning that, GDPR. The U.K. virtually came to a standstill for four weeks after GDPR. Who was going to send the first email? We saw that to an extent globally, but very much with marketers in the U.K..” Secondly, he sees an increase in the rise of lead management platforms. “The big player here is Conversant. They’re making big waves. They influenced a lot of the ad agencies in the U.K. to use their platform, that meant the agencies went out and educated their customers why they were doing it.” Conversant, of course, is a U.S. company, and they’re competing against another U.S. company for U.K. customers. “They’re pushing against the door of Integrate, the biggest lead management platform in the U.S.,” he said, “and have a massive steal on the market in the U.K..It’s a great business..”

As Rose had indicated, ABM is big in the U.K. B2B space. “We play in that space,” he said. “It’s about, rather than try and find new customers, learn more about people you know.” He named two other players, one U.S.  Signal (which helps identify and refine propensity data), and one U.K.-founded   Bright Target (which uses machine learning make recommendations on non-obvious lookalike prospects). 

As for intent marketing, Adams described Intent data: Bombora as “shouting from the rooftops” to U.K.; marketers about what they do (MarTech Tracker is a Bombora partner). “Intent is what gets everyone excited. The challenge they have is that no U.K. publishers have signed up to Bombora, so it’s not U.K. data going in there. All of Bombora’s data is based out of US cookies. Bombora asked for our help to get into U.K. publishers, and I had to tell them U.K. publishers — being prim and proper —were not going to let them have their cookies. But now there’s a U.K. version of Bombora, Cyance. It does exactly the same thing, and it’s swallowing Bombora’s customers slowly but surely.” 

Adams also shared Rose’s estimate of dotmailer.  “In the U.S., dotmailer would certainly be competitive to MailChimp.” Adestra, another U.K. vendor, is also making a move on the U.S.. “Anecdotally, the hundred businesses who take email marketing most seriously will be using Adestra, DotMailer or MailChimp: but it certainly won’t be all MailChimp.”

He mentioned one more imortant development: a fast-growing emphasis on content marketing. “It’s been top of the agenda since the year dot, but a lot if happening now. Leading the charge is Passle, no two ways about it, but you’ve got players like Gartner who have now come into the market (Gartner Content Services), less around getting content out there, more about getting the right content, the right messaging. In my day it would have been copywriters, but now it’s about taking data points, taking a bit of machine learning, taking the understanding of your audience, and being able to create content which is timely rather than hire a bunch of journalists, or — god forbid  — a marketer with copy-writing skills.”

He had already explained to me that some of the most successful U.K. marketing tech companies based their business around a handful of closely-held clients. Now he gave me an example. “Phrasee had just two clients for a long time.” One was Virgin Holidays. “It uses machine learning to write emails for you. It’s a big thing to sign off to a machine, but they had one or two big customers who fueled their entire design. Now they’ve  swallowed the UK market, and have secured funding to go into the U.S.. I’ll be amazed if they don’t swallow the U.S. market incredibly quickly. That’s the one I’d say to watch going into the U.S.. They’ve got an infinitely scaleable model, an incredible customer success story, and now they’ve got VC cash which has allowed them to put a lot of feet on the ground.” Also, CEO Parry Malm  is great for soundbites, he told me.

Still to come: Organizational changes and the agency story.  But right now…

From CabinetM, a check-list of over 500 U.K. marketing tech companies discovered in their database (there are some additional ones mentioned in the story:

23red

3radical

9-20am

A-Team Group

Aardman

A+C Studios

Ace Media

Acuigen

Adbrain

Adestra

Adgistics

Adjug

Adludio

Admedo

adMingle

Admoda

Adsy.me

Adthena

Agent3

Agility Multichannel

Airspace

Akordis

Alchemetrics

AlchemyWorks Ltd

Alfresco

allthings

Amplience

ANEGIS Consulting Ltd

Animade

Antavo

Apex Ecommerce

AppInstitute

Apptual

Apteco

ART Software Group

Artesian

Artesian Solutions

Articulate Marketing

AssetBank

Astonish Email

Atex

Audience2Media

Audiense

Authentiq

Authoritas

Avocarrot

Axis Animation

Ayima

Bango

Beacondo

bethebrand

BFI

Big Beach Marketing

Big Cat Group

Big Sofa

Birdbox Studio

Blippar

Blis

Blockmetry

Bloom Studio

Blue-Zoo Animation Studio

Bluefin Solutions

BlueprintCPQ

Bold Content

BookingBug

Bookitbee

Brand View

Brandwatch

Brandworkz

BrightCarbon

BrightLocal

BrightTarget

Britannia Communications

BuddyCRM

Bunting

Buyapowa

BuyerDeck

BuzzPortal

BuzzSumo

Byyd

C4B Media

Cablato

Calltracks

Calq

Cambashi

Capsule CRM

Carat

Carse & Waterman

Celebrus

ChartBlocks

Chatterbox Labs

CheckRecipient

Chorally

Clevertim

CleverTouch

ClickThroo

CloudApps

cloud.IQ

Code Worldwide

Codec

Coggle

Combined Knowledge

CommuniGator

Competitor Monitor

Concep

Connexica

Constant Commerce

Contentive

Convertr

Copify

Cortexica

Countly

CoverageBook

Create LMS

Creation Agency

Cremarc

CRM Technologies

Crystal Interactive

Cub Studio

Curveball Media

CustomerSure

CyberSec Networks

Daddy Analytics

Datacopia

Decibel Insight

DeepCrawl

Deepstack Media Ltd

deltaDNA

Dentsu Aegis Network

Dezzal

Dialer360

Dianomi

DigitalGenius

Distant Future Animation Studio

Distilled

dotmailer

Driftrock

DS Data Systems

DueDil

dunnhumby

Duuzra

Ebiquity

EditorEye

Elateral

Engage Hub

EngageSciences

Enigma Marketing

Entalysis

EnvisionX

Equiniti Charter

EtonDigital

Eventcube

EventHQ

Eventogy

Eventsforce

EVRYTHNG

Evvnt

Fat Joe

Feefo

Fetch

FIRST

Flashtalking

Flickerpix Animations

Flock Associates

Flourish

Flovate Workflow Technologies

Flowlens

Formisimo

Fospha

Fractal

Free Online Surveys

Freespee

Fresh Relevance

FreshMail

FRG Technology Consulting

Future Market Insights (FMI)

GameAnalytics

GatherContent

Geckoboard

GetSentiment

Giraffe Social Media

Glasscubes

Glisser

Global

Global Loyalty

Glow Digital Media

GlowMetrics

Golden Wolf

Good Audience

Goodlord

Goopi

GoSquared

Grip

Growth Intelligence

GrowthIntel

Hallam Internet

Hammerhead VR

hashtag’d

Hashtagify

HH Global

HighQ

Holition

HTK

Huddle

Hypersay

icomplete.com

idio

import.io

Improbable

IN2

Inbox Translation

INDE

Infinity

Infobip

Informa

Ingenta

Inkybee

InsideMetrics Limited

inskin Media

Inspired

Instiller

InTouch CRM

Invotra

iotec Global

IOVOX

iPlanWare

IPONWEB

iProspect

ISEBOX

Isobar Marketing Intelligence

Jadu

Jeux de Couleur Limited

Jigoshop

Jumplead

Kanbanchi

Kantar Retail

Kayako

Kazoova

KeepVid

Kelloo

Kerboo

Kickdynamic

Kilogramme

Kino-mo

Klaxon

Klipboard

Knowsis

Kognitio

kOnnect DIGITAL

Koozai

Krosswall

Landmrk

Lateral Group

Lead Forensics

Leadiro

LEADSExplorer

Lineup Systems

Linguamatics

Link Humans

Linkdex

Lissted

Locowise

Logicalware

LoopMe

LoyaltyLion

Lumesse

Lumi

Magi Metrics Limited

Magnate

Mailody

Maître

Majestic-12 Ltd.

Makeshift.io

Mantis_AI

Marilyn

Marketii

Marketing Logic

Marketing Pro Group

marketingQED

Marketingunity

MeasureMatch – Data, Analytics & MarTech Experts. On-Demand.

MediaCom

Mentionlytics LTD

Mezzo Labs

Miappi

Mindshare

Mintel

Mirriad

Mitingu

Moonfruit

Moosend

Mother

MPZ mail

MRM

Mtivity

myThings

NC Squared

Neatly.io

NETELLER

Newsroom

NewVoiceMedia

Nominet

Nomis Limited

NomNom

Nutickets

Odyssiant

Ometria

Omnisend

Onalytica

OneHydra

OpenCRM

Openr

Opteo

OptimizePress

OrderDynamics

Oryx Digital

Outreachr

Oxygen8 Group

Oyst

Paddle

Pancentric Digital

Panda

Papirfly

Parabella Animation Studio

Parker Software

Partnermarketing.com

Paysafe

Peerius

Performance Horizon

Periscopix

PHD

Phocas

Photolemur

Phrasee

Pi Datametrics

Pixelate Imaging

PlushForums

Polymime Studio

Popcorn Metrics

PowerLinks

PowerMapper

Powr of You

PowToon

PPC Protect

Pressat

PRmax

ProdPad

Profusion

Proof of Work

ProofHQ

ProofID

Propeller Ads

ProTop

Proxama

Pure360

Qube Media

Qubit

Qudos Visuals

Quirkos

Quuu

Rabbitsoft

Raising IT

Rakuten Marketing

Rant & Rave

Rapid Answer

Rapport

RatePanda

Rea Marketing

RealityMine

Red Rocket Media

RedEye

Redmill Solutions

Reevoo

Resource Guru

ResponseTap

Retail Marketing International

Reviews

Rise

RJDM Studios

Robertson Collaborate

Rocket Reach

RocketMill

Rocketseed

Rufus

Ruler Analytics

Sage

SaleCycle

sales-i

Salesformics

SalesSeek

Scoota

Scott Logic

Screaming Frog

Scrummy

SDL

SE Ranking

SelfStir

Sendible

SendOwl

Sentigraph

Sentiment

ServiceTick

SessionCam

SharpCloud Software

Shiptheory

Shoplo

Shoprocket

ShotPin

Sightpath

Sign-Up.to

SimilarWeb

Skeleton Productions

Skrill

SkyLads

Sli.do

Slurpy Studios

Smart Insights

Smarter Click

SmartFocus

SmartyAds

Snap Surveys

Social Ads Tool

Sociolus

SociVidz

Soko Media

SoPost

Spiel

Spoke

Spoon Guru

St Ives Group

Stack Communications

StageClip

StickerRide

Stipso

StoneShot

Stop

Stormy Studio Ltd.

StoryStream

StreamSend

Stylus

SubHub

SuiteCRM

Summit

SurveyMe

Swipe

Symphonic

SynGro

Tag Worldwide

Taggstar

Tamoco

tawk.to

Teads Studio

Teamgate

TeamImprover

Technavio

TextMagic

The Crocodile

The Engage Hub

The Fair

The Marketing Group

Third Light

Thunderhead

Tidio

Tockify

Top10

Tradedoubler

TradeTracker.com

Trans4mMarketing

tray.io

Treat Studios

Trint

Tripism

Truedash

Trunk Animation

Turtl

TVSquared

Twilert

Twoodo

Ubisend

UNiDAYS

UnifiedVU

Uniregistry

Unruly

Upstream

uQuiz

URL Profiler

UsefulFeedback

UserReplay

Ve Interactive

Velocity Partners

Vibetrace

Vidsy

VineUp

Virally

ViralWoot

Virtalis

virtualROI

Virtusales

VisScore

VisualDNA

Vizy, Inc.

Voicefox

Vontio

vTime

Vuelio

Vuture

Vzaar

Wagtail.io

We Are Social

WeatherAds

WebCEO

Webiny

weseethrough

Whalar

WhatUsersDo

Whiteboard Animation Agency

WhitoMedia

WigWam

wireWAX

Wombat Creative

Wordtracker

Workbooks.com

Workshape.io

Workshare

Workteam

Worldpay

WP Affiliate Manager

WPP

www.globomailer.com

Wyzowl

Xara

XenForo

Yieldify

Zappar

ZenLand.io

ZeroLight

Ziflow

Zingiri

Total
0
Shares
Related Posts