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Good morning, Marketers, and how’s your attention span?
Some news I’m just digesting: YouTube will roll-out its short-form video-streaming service, not unreasonably called Shorts, in the U.S. over the next few weeks. It had already been successfully launched in India following a ban on TikTok.
YouTube Shorts are vertical videos of up to 60 seconds. No coincidence there, one feels: TikTok videos, originally 15 seconds maximum, can now be 60 seconds long if users connect four 15 second segments together. Instagram stories are 15 seconds maximum, but longer videos can be uploaded: they’ll be chopped into 15 second segments. Clips created from Twitch streams? 60 seconds.
So for a lot of us, a lot of the time — and especially, one suspects, for pre-Boomers — one minute is all we’ve got to spare, preferably broken down into shorter episodes. I guess that’s one way we can consume our fair share of the incalculable quantity of content out there. But I guess my time’s up: enjoy the newsletter.
Telling stories with data, from a Silicon Valley leader
“Data doesn’t speak for itself, it needs a good storyteller,” said Nancy Duarte, CEO of Duarte Inc., the largest communications firm in Silicon Valley. Her keynote launched the second day of MarTech and gave all those who listened a sense of what the data world is missing – effective communication.
“Some have said data is the new oil,” Duarte explained. “The findings [from the data], though, will stay buried without the help of a communicator.” Data scientists and analysts explore data all day. But for others in the organization to make use of the data, it has to be explained.
“Communicating about data is difficult for some people,” Duarte said, “because when you’re analyzing the data you’re going to find one of two things in it. You’re either going to identify a problem or an opportunity in the data.”
To address the problem or opportunity requires action. “The ability to identify the action and communicate it moves [the data scientist] from being an individual contributor to a strategic advisor,” she explained. “As you build this muscle, you’ll become a more trusted data storyteller.”
Digital shopping and social commerce by the numbers
Global ecommerce company Shopify has released a 2021 forecast based on a survey of over 10,000 consumers in 11 countries taken in September 2020. We especially liked how it integrated data from 2018 and 2019 to get the full perspective on how things were, and where we’re heading in the future. Here are some of the highlights:
Young consumers lead the shift to digital. Over half of consumers (54%) shifted more of their spending to online channels. However, 67% of young consumers (under 35) did.
Many shoppers are hesitant to shop in-store. Only 65% of consumers said they shopped in-store during the pandemic. Of those who shopped in-store, 38% are doing so less often than pre-pandemic. 46% of all shoppers say they feel uncomfortable shopping in-store right now.
Consumers discover new brands via social media. Young consumers lead the charge for discovering brands on social media platforms at 54%. But, middle-agers (ages 35-54) weren’t far behind at 43%. And 25% of consumers 55+ also discovered new brands on social.
Shoppers are starting to buy on social. 28% of younger online shoppers said they made a purchase through a social platform. This is compared to 20% of middle-age consumers and 8% of the 55+ crowd.
Brick-and-mortar solutions gain traction. 50% of consumers said they’d like to make an appointment to schedule time for in-store shopping. 62% said contactless payments make them more comfortable shopping in-store.
Why we care. This shopper data fills out some of the narratives we’ve heard resonating through the martech world. There’s much speculation about what the retail climate will be like when things “get back to normal.” Not surprisingly, young shoppers are at the vanguard of digital adoption. Other age groups aren’t far behind. However, the younger consumers have the potential to be customers for a longer period of time. To retain them, brands must get involved in a deeper way to connect with issues and values that mean so much to younger consumers. This makes social media the preferred channel to be informal, passionate, authentic, and…as more platforms adopt buy-buttons…shoppable. On the brick-and-mortar side, there is an opportunity to drive foot traffic back in-store. But it is getting harder to separate brick-and-mortar from digital as retailers build out digital appointments, BOPIS and curbside pickups, and contactless payments.
Clari announces the formation of RevOps Council
Clari, the Sunnyvale, CA-based revenue operations platform announced the formation of a Revenue Operations Council aimed at providing education on best practices and strategies for RevOps, as well as supporting professional development within the RevOps community.
RevOps, implemented in different ways by different brands, essentially breaks down the silos between marketing, sales and customer success Ops, aligning them in pursuit of shared revenue goals. Some RevOps teams report to a Chief Revenue Officer.
The council is made up of executives from enterprise and high-growth brands such as McAfee, Okta, Workday, and Zoom. It unveiled a research agenda for 2021 with three main themes: identifying KPIs to fuel growth initiatives; establishing a single source of truth for RevOps; and communications and cadences for the different varieties of RevOps teams.
Why we care. With the B2B buyer journey going digital-first, and all the compelling reasons to have marketing and sales teams aligned, separate silos for marketing and sales Ops is something few brands can afford. Expect to hear more about RevOps in 2021. Craig Rosenberg, distinguished VP at Gartner, spoke about RevOps during the opening keynote at MarTech.
Quote of the day
“The merger of Operations…has been key to success for a lot of folks that were able to make the nimble changes they needed, and will be going forward, because they didn’t have any silos in their operational functions. From a technology, data, process and work perspective, everything was connected.” Craig Rosenberg, Distinguished VP, Analyst, Gartner.
About The Author
Kim Davis is the Editorial Director of MarTech Today. Born in London, but a New Yorker for over two decades, Kim started covering enterprise software ten years ago. His experience encompasses SaaS for the enterprise, digital- ad data-driven urban planning, and applications of SaaS, digital technology, and data in the marketing space.
He first wrote about marketing technology as editor of Haymarket’s The Hub, a dedicated marketing tech website, which subsequently became a channel on the established direct marketing brand DMN. Kim joined DMN proper in 2016, as a senior editor, becoming Executive Editor, then Editor-in-Chief a position he held until January 2020.
Prior to working in tech journalism, Kim was Associate Editor at a New York Times hyper-local news site, The Local: East Village, and has previously worked as an editor of an academic publication, and as a music journalist. He has written hundreds of New York restaurant reviews for a personal blog, and has been an occasional guest contributor to Eater.