Established marketing clouds like Oracle and Salesforce have recently been making big moves to boost their data chops. Oracle, for instance, scooped up Datalogix, and Salesforce set up its Wave analytics cloud.
Today, predictive marketing platform AgilOne is going the other way.
The company had been offering a data management platform for integration with tools that can use its customer intelligence. Now, the new version 5 of the platform has added its own tools and become a marketing cloud.
“We were the brains behind marketers,” CEO and founder Omer Artun told VentureBeat. As a data gathering, analytical, audience segmentation, and prediction platform, he said, “we didn’t do execution,” but required integration with third-party tools for that.
But now it is doing execution.
The new, custom-built tools enable email and Facebook campaigns, Web personalization, and direct mail campaigns via snail mail. The new version also boosts the platform’s API capabilities so it can be integrated into call centers and point-of-sale systems, and it ups the capture capabilities so the platform can collect data from mobile apps.
“This brings us up to par with the likes of Adobe and Salesforce,” Artun contended. “This turns us from a predictive marketing [data management platform] into a predictive marketing cloud.”
Predictive capabilities can, for instance, help a marketer determine the likelihood that a given online customer will make a purchase. Web personalization allows sites to make product recommendations based on the customer’s preferences and available items.
Artun said that AgilOne has a data management advantage against those established and larger marketing clouds, in that “none of them have remotely what we have.”
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“All of these execution platforms were becoming a commodity,” he said, and they started to add data capabilities to distinguish themselves.
But “Salesforce is missing [built-in] data management and predictive [capabilities],” he said. “Adobe doesn’t have any data management capability,” and, while it is “strong on web analytics, it’s not as robust in customer intelligence.”
The drivers for AgilOne’s move, he said, included the fact that marketers were looking for real-time solutions, and “it’s hard to do execution in real-time with two parties’ [products].” Additionally, AgilOne found that external web tools “didn’t allow personalization as tightly as we wanted.”
Most importantly, AgilOne targets mid-market businesses — and “they aren’t going to buy 17 different tools and try to integrate them together,” Artun said.
Although it is now relatively self-contained, AgilOne intends to continue offering integration with some outside tools. These, Artun told us, include Adobe and Salesforce’s clouds, and “only the biggest web personalization and email campaign [tools].”
“We want to be the hub that connects everything together,” he said.