3 Takeaways from IBM Amplify

I spent the last week in sunny San Diego, enjoying time with partners and clients at the revamped IBM Amplify 2015 event. It’s been about a year since IBM acquired Silverpop, and it’s clear that this is not your grandfather’s Amplify. There is a huge IBM presence, an expanded set of sponsors and exhibitors, and a broader audience of brand marketers.

Here are 3 takeaways from IMB Amplify 2015:

1. Core email database services aren’t going anywhere. That’s because the core problems of an email marketer have been consistent over time – list growth, retention, and optimization continued to dominate our conversations with attendees.

2. … but, email now means more than the email channel… It’s been interesting to watch the pendulum swing back to positivity on email. One of the reasons for this is the burgeoning innovation in the email space itself; another reason is a broader awareness of the importance of email as a primary key to the customer’s digital journey. Silverpop has expanded capabilities in this regard, enabling contact lists that live in its Engage platform to move seamlessly into social channels – e.g., Facebook Custom Audiences.

3. It pays to dig into deliverability. I was proud to hear the level of sophistication in both the presentation and the audience questions at Silverpop deliverability/provisioning guru Jeff Dellapina’s deliverability sessions. It was clear that this is a topic that is not going away any time soon, and that marketers are passionate about understanding. It’s encouraging to hear a community that wants to get it right. It made me even more confident in FreshAddress’s commitment to maintaining and protecting the data integrity of email lists, and the many ways we’re innovating in that area. It was also interesting to hear the unique challenges that each marketer brought to the table – for example: imagine the list maintenance challenges that result when you sell tax assistance services! Not only are you sending emails that may have financial content, but also your typical sending season may run only 4 months or so until returns wrap up in April. Who wants to hear about taxes in August??? Great to hear questions related to that scenario, IP warming, sending cadence, and more.

Did you attend IBM Amplify? What were your takeaways?

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