Key Takeaways from 2020 & the Gartner Marketing Symposium

Key Takeaways from 2020 & the Gartner Marketing Symposium

Key Takeaways from 2020 & the Gartner Marketing Symposium

Like most marketers, this is the time I reflect on the previous 12 months while planning for the New Year. As we move from 2020 to 2021, I’ve been thinking about the recent Gartner Marketing Symposium/Xpo and how marketing is changing.

For me, the top takeaway was the importance of using customer data on all channels to create omnichannel experiences. Treasure Data CMO Tom Treanor presented on why companies are getting serious about their data strategies and how customer data platforms (CDP) give a competitive advantage.


Missed the Symposium? Watch Tom Treanor’s presentation, “The CDP Advantage—Grow Revenue & Improve Customer Insights.”

It’s easy to see why this is a major marketing trend: It’s better for the customer, who receives a more personalized, relevant experience. And if we as marketers do our job right, our personalization efforts become more effective and efficient, allowing us to stretch marketing budgets and positively impact customer journeys. This year, personalization has helped many businesses and brands maintain customer relationships, even when in-person channels closed or became extremely limited.

Since several other members of the Treasure Data team also had interesting takeaways from the Symposium, I thought it would be helpful to share their insights too:

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  • Madtech is on the rise. Marketing and advertising technologies continue to establish themselves at the very center of media planning, buying, tracking, and analyzing activities. The Gartner Marketing Symposium gave attendees the sense that there is less and less actual hands-on marketing and advertising today. But martech has the potential to make businesses more competitive than ever.
  • Rethink your segments. Instead of segmenting customers by how you see them, create segments by what’s impacting them.
  • Agility is everything now. Throw out your previous plans and quickly pivot your business models or go-to-market strategies, if that’s what you need to do to survive and thrive. There’s a whole new dynamic with COVID-19, and it changes how companies operate. There’s been a shift from longer-term planning to building flexibility into the current marketing plan—including strategy, martech, type of skills needed, and testing. We’ve gone from a time where everything is relatively predictable to a time where everything’s in flux.
  • Double down on creative optimization, personalization, and contextual targeting. Based on what we’ve seen from companies who are carrying on well and even thriving despite 2020’s myriad of obstacles, this advice is dead-on accurate.

As we fine-tune old tactics and create new strategies, these factors will certainly drive marketing throughout the coming year—and as we move into 2021, best wishes for a happy, prosperous year. Learn more about Gartner CDP research and resources here.

Lisa Stapleton
Lisa Stapleton
Lisa Stapleton is a former editorial director at IDG and former senior editor for InfoWorld and InformationWeek. She has written extensively about enterprise IT, business and environmental topics, and now serves as a senior marketing content manager for Treasure Data. She holds an MBA from Santa Clara, an Applied Math undergraduate degree from UC Berkeley, and an MA in journalism from Mizzou. She also enjoys being a Toastmaster.
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