Hewlett-Packard entered the digital marketing space earlier this month, which has seen serious offerings from the likes of IBM and Adobe Systems—which dedicated half of its company to digital marketing—among others. HP’s offering, HP Digital Marketing Hub, comes from the company’s Autonomy unit. eWEEK Senior Editor Darryl K. Taft spoke with Robert Youngjohns, general manager of HP Autonomy, to gain more insight into HP’s foray into digital marketing. The Q&A follows.
What is the HP Digital Marketing Hub?
Put simply, HP Digital Marketing Hub is a new digital marketing solution from HP Autonomy that lets marketers deliver compelling and personalized experiences to customers based on a real-time analysis of the massive volumes of information that pour into an organization across multiple customer touch points. The Hub helps businesses increase conversions and revenue by analyzing large chunks of data to segment customer bases, build audience models, and deliver personalized content and offers to customers. It’s where big data, marketing analytics and big content merge, for big results.
How does this play into HP’s strategy for the digital marketing space, and what is that strategy?
We see digital marketing as a tremendous opportunity for HP and believe we bring a very differentiated solution to market that will make businesses more successful. No one else can bring the scale, the depth of analytics, and the proven background and expertise in delivering highly targeted solutions for the chief marketing officer and chief digital officer.
While the Digital Marketing Hub announcement signals an important direction for HP, it also builds on a very strong heritage from HP Autonomy in the digital marketing space. Over the years, tens of thousands of companies have turned to HP Autonomy to create and deliver compelling Websites and experiences that increase customer engagement and conversions. For example, Japan’s All Nippon Airways has generated a multimillion-dollar revenue increase by using HP Autonomy solutions to optimize the content, layout and offers by visitor segment on their Website.
Marketers today more than ever are highly focused on driving results. At the same time, they are challenged by the volume and velocity of data that pours into an organization from social channels, contact centers and their own sites—big data by definition. If they could harness that data in real time to understand customer behaviors, thereby optimizing their marketing campaigns to reach customers where, when and how they prefer, that company does better business. HP’s strategy in digital marketing is simple: Provide the best big data analytics in order to optimize real-time multichannel experiences across any one of the customer touch points.
What problem does the Digital Marketing Hub solve?
With the explosion of big data in the last few years, it’s a new frontier for marketers. But many are overwhelmed trying to deal with it, much less turning it to their advantage. It used to be “if I could only find the data to solve this problem, I’d be in good shape.” Now it’s “there is so much data, I don’t know how to handle it.”
For example, it’s not uncommon for businesses to have invested in dozens of systems, including customer relationship management, e-commerce, email management, marketing automation, search and bid management, and social media systems. Each of these solutions addresses customer data in some form or another and is capable of completing its intended task. But we hear from customers, industry analysts and partners that the data from these systems often sits in silos and is not put to use effectively.
HP Autonomy Delivers Digital Marketing Hub
The HP Digital Marketing Hub serves as a centralized data processing engine that can combine information from all of these multiple systems, both in house and from a vibrant ecosystem of third-party systems.
At its core, it’s an analytics platform that helps marketers increase customer conversions and loyalty by understanding the customer’s behavior in real time—answering not just what is happening across digital channels, but why it is happening—basically building that context that is missing from many of the current Web reporting solutions today. What are the best performing segments and how can marketers use that information to make their campaigns more targeted and effective? The HP Digital Marketing Hub delivers those insights.
How do the different HP technologies work together?
One of the benefits of working in a company like HP is the ability to tap into innovations across different groups to pull together something cohesive and groundbreaking. So what you see with the HP Digital Marketing Hub is a real cross-HP solution, leveraging technology innovations from HP Autonomy, HP Vertica, HP Labs and HP Converged Cloud. It’s a great example of HP’s big data strategy, called HAVEn, at work. HAVEn stands for Hadoop, Autonomy, Vertica, Enterprise Security and ‘n’ number of applications, and in this case, we are tapping into HP’s innovation in big data through the HP HAVEn platform and adding in science from HP Labs for analytics, all delivered on HP Converged Cloud.
Specifically, HP Autonomy technology is able to understand the massive volume of unstructured data that pours in at a great velocity from Web clickstream data, social media streams, plus the content of emails, call center recordings and video. HP Vertica provides analysis of structured data. We’ve also injected a high degree of science and technology from HP Labs, which lets us take all the data processed and understood by HP Autonomy and HP Vertica, and pinpoint behaviors to actually predict actions. We provide access to the Hub via HP Converged Cloud.
How does this compare to the other digital marketing analytics solutions available in the market?
The HP Digital Marketing Hub is really differentiated along three levels:
- Analytics—we’ve taken a unique approach that allows businesses to bring together and analyze all forms of data: structured, unstructured and everything in between.
- An open approach, not a proprietary one—not one-size-fits all. This helps increase the value of your marketing technology investments. Initial ecosystem partners include BlueKai, Digital River, ExactTarget, Experian Marketing Services, hybris Software, Kenshoo, Marketo and Rio SEO. Initial agency and consulting partners include Covario, Critical Mass, Deloitte Digital, Realise and Sapient.
- Link to actions and content delivery. We can help marketers deliver the right content asset at the right time on the right channel to the right audience, for maximum results.
The digital marketing space is very fragmented, and there are a lot of stand-alone black box solutions out there. But we have learned that you can’t force a company into one platform, nor can you ask them to rip out what they are already using, so we have worked with several ISVs and digital marketing agencies on co-development and integration programs for the HP Digital Marketing Hub. This allows customers to preserve their investments in marketing applications, while at the same time leveraging the Hub’s powerful, real-time data processing engine.