The IBM Digital Marketing Optimization platform would not facilitate media buys itself. The focus of the product is to “integrate all of the Web and digital behavior data from the site and syndicate that information to the platforms where the media buy is happening.”
While there are many packages and software components in the IBM fold, “a key part here is the services component that will be required to enable this,” commented Ray Wang, founder and principal analyst at Constellation Research. “Software alone is not enough to handle the creative requirements the agencies will need.”
Henderson said the point of the Digital Marketing Network is to help marketers make a better decision about the “price and message of the media.” Although IBM declined to share the number of customers using its Digital Marketing Optimization suite, Esteban Kolsky, principal and founder of consultancy ThinkJar, said, “IBM has access to more products and services than most any other vendor in the world via marketing partnerships, acquisitions, as well as some organic innovations.”
Kolsky noted, however, that proving out the results of its integrations will be a necessity. “Most of what they have done has not been documented,” he said. “I don’t discount that they can [fuel digital marketing transformation], they [just need to] document and present the results of what they can accomplish.”
When asked what IBM’s cloud for marketers does that’s different than other enterprise companies, Henderson said interoperability between marketer tools ranging from email to website personalization and marketing analytics is the core value proposition.
“If IBM is successful, what they are doing is using technology to enable creative and [other] agencies to do what they do best,” Wang said.
Partner Network integrations are available immediately to Digital Marketing Optimization platform users.