CMO's top 8 martech stories for the week – 6 October 22 – CMO
All the latest martech, adtech and customer technology news from Lunio, Optimizely, Zendesk, Genesy, Heyday by Hootsuite, TrafficGuard, Regie.ai, SmartCommerce and Myxx Solutions.
Lunio raises US$15m for click fraud solution
Click fraud traffic management vendor, Lunio, has raised US$15 million in a Series A funding round to pursue its global growth plans.
The vendor has partnered with Smedvig Capital and an angel fund of senior leaders in the adtech space including from companies such as Google and Warner. The plan is now to accelerate growth by expanding Lunio’s product set and marketing as well as customer teams. The company’s focus is on solutions that detect and prevent click fraud in advertising traffic.
“Over the past few months, we’ve been working hard to raise awareness about the scale of the ad fraud problem and how to address it, deliver comprehensive protection to more businesses, and unlock the true potential of optimising ad campaigns with clean data from validated users,” said Lunio content manager, James Deeney. “Our development roadmap will ultimately help our clients generate more conversions and revenue from every dollar they spend on platforms like Google, Facebook, LinkedIn, Youtube, Twitter and more.”
Lunio, formerly known as PPC Protect, was founded in 2018 by Segev Hochberg, Neil Andrew and Alex Winston on an initial investment of $150,000. A year later, the company scored seed funding of $2.8m. Today it protects more than 1000 businesses globally, covering over 10,000 individual advertising accounts and representing 2500 users.
Optimizely aims to Orchestrate new digital experiences
Integration for end-to-end content and digital experience management is the name of the game for Optimizely, which unveiled a new product offering and ambition this week.
The digital experience platform (DXP) provider has unveiled what it’s calling ‘Boundless Digital Invention’, a new catchphrase to describe a more unified and integrated approach to its solutions for digital marketers. Among these are the new Orchestrate solution, which see three of Optimizely’s core products – Content Marketing (CMP), Content Management (CMS) and Digital Asset Management (DAM) – integrated into one offering for end-to-end content management.
The vendor said Orchestrate will allow users to plan and collaborate on campaign plans and tasks as well as schedule works to be completed, create and preview content, manage and store content in one place and also test different versions of content against customer segments.
This is complemented by Optimizely’s commerce products for both B2B and B2C organisations, as well as its flagship experimentation platform incorporating Web testing, feature flags and personalisation products. The vendor said Boundless Digital Invention is also backed by data insights to improve inclusive collaboration, drive confident content creation and increase customer foresight.
“The digital transformation era brought with it the promise of limitless innovation. But as more technologies were adopted and data became overwhelmingly unstructured and siloed, it created the opposite effect – forcing marketers to lower their expectations as they were pressured to deliver outcomes within restricted workflows,” said Optimizely CEO, Alex Atzberger. “With Boundless Digital Invention, we are unlocking inclusive collaboration, confident content creation and customer foresight, transforming the marketer’s experience, which we believe is the most critical component to delivering better customer experiences.”
Zendesk debuts new customer sentiment and intent functionality
Zendesk has taken the wrappers off Intelligent Triage and Smart Assist, new artificial intelligence (AI) solutions to further automate customer support requests and access valuable data at scale.
Intelligent Triage and Smart Assist are the next step in Zendesk’s vision to create accessible CX AI for companies of all sizes. The technology uses proprietary industry expertise and insights from trillions of customer data points and applies a vertical lens. This can be used to create customised models capable of identifying the intent, language and sentiment of each customer interaction.
This aim is to use machine learning to create more personalised and informed interactions to better serve customers. For example, specific inquiries, such as “I’m having problems with payment”, can be automatically sent to an agent equipped to handle billing, while inquiries that include language written in all capital letters or in a sarcastic way indicating negative sentiment can be prioritised.
As well as supporting agents with directing inquiries and overall management of support, Zendesk said the tools will help to detect sensitive information automatically to meet compliance and security needs or extract confidential data like names, addresses, phone numbers, usernames and financial info for use in workflows. The capabilities are being embedded with The Zendesk Suite Enterprise Edition.
“With this technology, we’re delivering AI tools that can be set up in under a minute to streamline business operations without needing dedicated developers or an expensive implementation,” said Zendesk chief technology officer, Adrian McDermott. “Our approach is designed to take the burden off customer experience teams through pre-trained machine learning tools that do more, faster and with less guesswork involved. These models come ready to use instantly, continue to learn over time and become customised to each company’s operations by continuously incorporating feedback.”
Regie.ai secures US$10 million
Also raising Series A funding this week is Regie.ai, which uses AI to streamline content workflows across enterprise sales and marketing teams.
The company has secured US$10 million in a Series A funding round led by Scale Venture Partners, with participation from Foundation Capital, South Park Commons and prominent angel investors. The funds will be used for product development and new features.
Regie.ai uses generative AI to help companies automatically generate quality copy and content, store it for sharing, approval and messaging consistency across teams, export sequences to sales engagement platforms, and suggest copy improvements based on campaign results.
“We’re applying highly advanced generative AI systems to optimise all of the content workflows for go-to-market teams and make copy creation not only more efficient but more impactful,” said Regie.ai CEO and co-founder, Srinath Sridhar.
Regie.ai currently offers four product lines for composing SEO-optimised content, creating custom sales sequences using generative AI and best practices, content management and browser extension into the user’s inbox. It also integrates with sales engagement platforms like Outreach.io, SalesLoft, and Hubspot.
The platform currently supports more than 75 SaaS customers including AT&T, Crunchbase, Sophos and Auth0.
Genesys introduces AI Experience
Genesys is positioning its new Cloud AI Experience as a simplification of how organisations deliver and improve bespoke end-to-end customer journeys through turnkey personalisation, automation and predictive analysis.
The new Genesys Cloud AI Experience represents an extension of the vendor’s experience orchestration capabilities, including greater ability to predict actions, automate journeys in real time and drive toward outcomes. For example, organisations can integrate real-time data and customer signals to easily orchestrate and optimise proactive, personalised engagement across digital and voice touchpoints.
The platform combines conversational AI, knowledge, agent assistance, predictive routing and predictive engagement into a single integrated solution. It also has a new digital bot flow builder to help organisations differentiate customer self-service experiences using rich media, images, visual menus and added languages. In addition, a new knowledge optimiser provides deeper visibility into content effectiveness and usage.
Other additions are an explainability feature to AI routing that supplies insights into the factors driving better customer outcomes across voice and digital channels, plus embedded data services to capture interaction data that can then be mined using speech and text analytics as well as for intent automatically. Identity resolution is also automatically applied.
The new capabilities can be added to an existing Genesys Cloud CX contract or included as a part of a new deployment.
SmartCommerce acquires Myxx Solutions
SmartCommerce, which provides an AI-assisted SaaS solution for the consumer packaged goods (CPG) industry, has acquired Myxx, an ecommerce solutions vendor.
Myxx’s omnichannel marketing platform dynamically connects brands and retailers to consumers through shoppable recipes and proprietary personalised list-to-cart technology. SmartCommerce has already begun integrating Myxx’s technologies and analytics and expects to roll out enhanced services to clients in the fourth quarter of this year.
As part of the transaction, Myxx CEO, Dede Houston, will join SmartCommerce and continue to drive the vision of the company. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“Today’s technology puts the consumer squarely at the centre of product discovery, purchase and repurchase. Rather than shopping by pushing a cart down a crowded aisle, consumers are turning to influencers, friends, and contextual solutions like recipes to find and choose products,” SmartCommerce CEO, Jennifer Silverberg, commented. “Myxx saw this coming years ago and has developed solutions – some not even commercialised yet – that help put brands in the driver’s seat at the commerce table.
“The Myxx functionality applies to much more than just recipes – it makes it easy to buy and sell anything that is purchased as a package, such as DIY kits, cleaning bundles, outfits and beauty regimens.”
Houston added SmartCommerce’s data capabilities married with Myxx’s audience analytics engine will provide deep insights to help brands drive choice and loyalty.
TrafficGuard teams up with online gaming affiliate tracking platform
Digital ad verification and fraud prevention platform, TrafficGuard, has teamed up with online gaming affiliate tracking firm, RavenTrack.
The pair are planning to assist brands and advertisers maximise returns on ad spend on their affiliate marketing by mitigating invalid traffic and ad fraud prevention. TrafficGuard’s Affiliate Protection service focuses on common types of invalid traffic (IVT) such as cookie stuffing, domain spoofing, anonymised traffic and compliance fraud present in online gaming today.
TrafficGuard said its full-funnel, multipoint solution measures end-user engagement, intent and propensity to convert to give the most transparent view of advertising activity. The product also offers customised filters so advertisers can ensure affiliate partners are only being rewarded for the activity permitted under establisheda terms and conditions.
“This online gaming and gambling industry got a huge boost in the pandemic, but bad actors also joined in the fray quite actively,” said TrafficGuard CRO, Matt Sutton. “Through our Affiliate Prevention and integration into RavenTrack, we want to enable the brands and advertisers using their market-leading software to get their optimised and accurate ROAS with the right data, at the right time.”
TrafficGuard is planning to deploy a structured team of affiliate experts led by VP of affiliate partnerships, Kalen Bushe, to support the partnership.
Heyday by Hootsuite now integrates with Instagram
Conversational AI platform, Heyday by Hootsuite, has now integrated Instagram Direct Messages and Facebook Messenger within its ecommerce Shopify chatbot app.
The vendor said the integration will allow merchants’ business to access conversational AI features across Instagram Direct Messages and Facebook Messenger, ensuring chats are operating 24/7 year-round, to both sell products and answer FAQs in real-time, any time of day. Heyday’s chat app, originally launched in November 2020, also integrates with Web chat and email – centralising direct messages in one unified inbox.
“Businesses are under pressure to deliver exceptional experiences that meet consumers’ demands for real-time, authentic communication,” said Heyday by Hootsuite co-founder and VP of Conversational AI, Steve Desjarlais. “Today’s announcement enables businesses to bridge this gap by meeting customers where they are at: Instagram and Facebook Messenger.”
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Tags: Mergers and acquisitionsgenesysdigital marketingdigital advertisingHootSuiteZendeskcustomer supportInstagramchatbotsmartechadtechOptimizelycustomer technologycustomer technologiesconversational AIRegie.aiTrafficGuardSmartCommerce
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