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There’s nothing sweeter than linking marketing to revenue. Just ask Geoff Schiller, chief revenue officer of POPSUGAR. The lifestyle media company uses data to provide content that tantalizes readers and advertisers alike.

In advance of Schiller’s session on innovation and disruption in publishing at DMA’s &THEN 2016 conference, I had the opportunity to ask a few questions via email about POPSUGAR’s affinity for data and its knack for native advertising.

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When it comes to marketing, creativity and data are inextricably linked.Marketing is data AND creative

Two areas under the spotlight in marketing today are creative and data. In the past they were often dealt with in silos: The stereotype was that the creative team worked on projects such as gut-based branding and ad campaigns, while the data analysts focused on tasks such as market mix modeling and segmentation—rarely collaborating on campaigns. Today creative and data are two sides of a coin that double its value.

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One marketing leader who’s a proponent of the creative/data partnership is Jamie Gutfreund, global CMO of Wunderman. During her upcoming session at DMA’s &THEN 2016 conference in Los Angeles she’ll be pulling back the curtain on trends to watch in 2017 and beyond. I caught up with Gutfreund jetting between meetings and asked her for a preview.

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Once B2B marketers know what’s standing in the way of a purchase, they can engage a prospective client’s “mobilizer” to help push through to a decision.

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“The starting point for marketing and sales today is all about how customers buy,” says Brent Adamson. This is especially true in B2B, where the day of one decision maker is over, according to Adamson, coauthor of The Challenger Customer, along with Matthew Dixon, Pat Spenner, and Nick Toman. Adamson points out that in the B2B purchase process there are 5.4 people involved on average.

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One of the many reasons I enjoy attending conferences is the people. The attendees give you insight into the issues, opportunities, and challenges they face. The speakers provide food for thought that helps to sate attendees’ appetite for the information they need to harness opportunities and overcome challenges.

As emcee of Yes Lifecycle Marketing’s inaugural customer summit, Yescalate 2016, I had the opportunity to speak with many of the attendees and, of course, listen intently to a bevy of insightful presenters. Below is a summary of my favorite advice and insights from the conference. Click the cover image to view the PDF.

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When brands focus on the experience rather than on the product, customers respond—with their dollars and their loyalty.

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“We’re no longer in the business of selling products; we’re in the business of selling experiences,” Brad Rencher boldly asserted during the 2016 Adobe Summit opening day keynote session. “Products are just along for the ride…. This is our new reality.”

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Survival as a chief marketer in 2016 and beyond will depend on being highly adaptable and maintaining a deep understanding of today’s capricious customers.chameleon700x400_905622

The CMO of 2016 and beyond is a chameleon. Survival as a chief marketer will depend on being highly adaptable, having the ability to blend with changeable surroundings, and maintaining a deep understanding of today’s capricious customers. If that sounds like a tall order, it is. Still, it’s the reality for the chief marketers of today and tomorrow.

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Evolving technologies and strategies—from programmatic to performance marketing—could have marketers poised to shift their budget allocations this year.

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Winterberry Group predicts increases in marketing spending on the majority of marketing channels this year. But expect some of that spending to be fluid. Several evolving technologies and strategies—from programmatic and video to performance marketing and campaign management—could have marketers poised to shift their spending as 2016 unfolds.

During his keynote at the Direct Marketing Club of New York’s 2016 Annual Outlook event, Winterberry Group senior managing director Bruce Biegel examined eight trends that the strategic consulting firm predicts could impact marketing spending in 2016. They are:

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Winterberry Group predicts increased spending on nearly all marketing channels.

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Where will U.S. marketing spending grow in 2016? The more expedient question, perhaps, is which channels won’t see spending increases in 2016. Winterberry Group predicts increases in marketing spending on the majority of marketing channels—the exceptions: marketing spending on cinema, insert media, and radio will stay flat; magazine and newspaper spending will decline (by 1.9% and 6%, respectively).

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