Salesforce.com Opens Up Access To Ad Tech Companies

CRMadsSalesforce.com wants marketers to know its paid media pitch extends well beyond the confines of social media now.

On Wednesday, it revealed buyers can now activate CRM data for ad buys across mobile web, video, display and apps through a wave of new Active Audiences API partners: LiveRamp, LiveIntent, Neustar, Krux and Viant.

Although Salesforce.com is catching up in digital media relative to its Marketing Cloud competitors, the company said Active Audiences is designed to enhance ad targeting with Salesforce.com’s first-party data trove.

“We’ve moved beyond ad targeting on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, and will onboard new partners for advertising on any channel, whether it’s Web display or mobile apps,” Eric Stahl, SVP of product marketing for Salesforce.com, told AdExchanger on the eve of Salesforce.com's annual Marketing Cloud confab, Connections, in New York.

“We want to provide an open set of APIs for partners and really build out that ecosystem over time. You’ll see us consistently rolling out more [access to] ad networks.”

Although Google is absent from Salesforce.com’s new ad alliance, Stahl believes Facebook’s Audience Network coupled with its own strength in CRM will be a powerful combination.

“We’ve seen ads show up in Huffington Post’s mobile app, with triggers based on Facebook identity and our CRM data,” he said. “Our vision is to provide the data that can drive one-to-one journeys. Triggering ads based on CRM data is a natural extension of what we do.” 

Although Salesforce.com already provided lookalike modeling and offline measurement through Facebook, Twitter and Datalogix, an Active Audiences API could give it much more publisher scale in addition to benefits of a media company without actually becoming a media company, said Dave Hendricks, president of LiveIntent.

For instance, Krux, which has a publisher-focused data-management platform, could add more intelligence on known customers to boost the audience segments its clients are opening up to advertisers.

“At a strategic level … this is an exciting opportunity to work with Salesforce.com to widen the aperture of their current marketing solution,” noted Tom Chavez, co-founder and CEO of Krux. “This expands [their offering] beyond known people identified through email to include the open Web, mobile, programmatic, search, display.”

Similarly, Salesforce.com, which already worked with Datalogix, will open the door to LiveRamp to embed a data onboarding service within the Salesforce.com Marketing Cloud interface, according to Travis May, president of LiveRamp.

The deal with LiveRamp does not preclude customers from using the Oracle-owned Datalogix, if they wish, since Salesforce.com's longtime strategy as a company has been to launch capability-based clouds (marketing, sales, customer service, analytics) and then construct massive partner app ecosystems around each of them.

"We've always believed in … integrating to our partners and not the other way around," May noted. "Salesforce.com made it easy for us to provide a user experience that anyone could use to run cross-channel marketing campaigns."

 


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