Agencies and Marketing Automation Partnerships Creating Better CRM Systems

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MDC Partners and Salesforce this year made a joint, seven-figure, minority investment in Pierry. It would be the first time that Salesforce would co-invest with an agency group. Pierry's software, working on top of Salesforce software, would help agencies interpret data to create, manage and distribute more personalized content such as emails or mobile ads.

It wouldn't be the only new partnership between a marketing technology firm and an agency group as brands express interest in technology that will help them create more effective campaigns targeting individuals.

Marketing automation company Sysomos is also revamping its own suite of products to win business from agencies and brands hungry for simplified technology.

The company bought social analytics firm Expion late last year and more recently launched Set, an offering that combines many of its products, including those that identify brand conversations and influencers, monitor and analyze those conversations and optimize content based on new intelligence. Previously, clients looking to do all of those things needed to run queries through four separate products that didn't talk to each other.

Wunderman created a formal partnership with independent firm Marketo. The marketing automation company, which can track a customer's actions from the time they get an e-mail promotion to the online point of sale, for example, is meant to help Wunderman build richer profiles of what clients' customers are doing, so it can send more customized and targeted messages

Consultancies like Deloitte, Accenture and IBM that specialize in system integration have also dipped their toes in agency services, largely through acquisition. IBM, which is perhaps the most recent tech giant to enter the space, last week announced the acquisition of digital creative shop Resource/Ammirati.

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