6sense has raised $20 million in a Series B funding round, which comes less than a year after launching its SaaS-based predictive intelligence platform. The round of funding was led by Bain Capital Ventures (BCV), and brings the company’s total financing to $36 million. Battery Ventures and Venrock, who both contributed in 6sense’s successful Series A funding, also contributed to the round. Indy Guha, a BCV partner, will join the company’s advisory board.
By Deena M. Amato-McCoy Industry pundits may have predicted lofty holiday sales increases, but weak in-store Black Friday weekend results are putting the pressure on retail marketers to be more strategic this holiday season. Rather than rely on deep discounts, marketers are analyzing Big Data collected during the highly anticipated Black Friday shopping weekend to fine-tune remaining holiday marketing campaigns. Thanks to particularly strong e-Commerce sales throughout Black Friday weekend, there is an abundance of Big Data available at marketers’ fingertips. Online sales soared 32% on Thanksgiving Day compared to last year, and increased 26% on Black Friday versus 2013, according to comScore. Mobile-generated sales accounted for 28.9% of all online sales Thanksgiving weekend, compared to 24.9% last year, according to the IBM Digital Analytics Benchmark. When mined correctly, “this Big Data can cause a dramatic marketing shift,” said Jay Henderson, director of Smarter Commerce, IBM. “Historically, marketing campaigns took approximately a year to plan, and then were executed [on Black Friday]. By mining this digital data, marketers gain real-time feedback about holiday promotions performance.” Armed with digital dashboards, marketers can more easily monitor promotional and sales progress, which helps them determine how to best adjust product movement, and inventory and sales levels. Graphics illustrate how internal results align with competitors’ performance, as well as how promotions are impacting available inventory levels. Graphical presentations of data also reveal sales among specific customer segments, geo-fencing promotions and merchandising categories, which are “all factors that can give insight into whether specific campaigns are delivering positive or negative
By Jessica Lee, HelloWorld As the digital landscape continues to expand, retail brands are presented with more opportunities than ever to interact with consumers across channels and gather valuable insights along the way. In a world where data begets data, the most potent campaigns are powered by cross-channel initiatives, which allow consumers to move seamlessly across social channels and experience brand messaging in a way that’s consistent and familiar. In order to fuel effective campaigns, however, brands must have a thorough understanding of their audience, the digital platforms they’re most likely to engage with, and the types of content they prefer. To grasp richer insights, marketers must recognize the research, discovery and acquisition phases of the data cycle and how they relate to shopper interaction. Research Phase: Deciding What You Want From Facebook to Snapchat, Reddit and Vine, consumers are swimming in a sea of social media, providing brands with a plethora of potential communication points. Choosing the right channels to have a presence on requires marketers to take a close look at their target audience and determine the mediums where marketing will be most effective. When crafting a campaign, marketers must analyze their objectives and determine whether their end goal is to generate followers, promote new products, increase loyalty, or something else entirely. Understanding these key objectives can help marketers determine the proper channels to use and the tactics best fit to meet their aspirations. When devising its “Reasons to Love Denim” sweepstakes, J.Crew kept its goals top of mind. To raise awareness for
As the volume of B2B purchases being made online continues to grow, suppliers are expanding their e-Commerce platforms and overall omnichannel capabilities, according to a new study from Forrester Consulting conducted on behalf of Accenture and hybris software. The study, titled: Building The B2B Omnichannel Commerce Platform Of The Future, revealed that more than half (52%) of B2B buyers expect to make at least half of their purchases online in three years, highlighting the need for B2B organizations to enhance their omnichannel experience. An overwhelming majority (83%) of B2B vendors stated they are either in the process of implementing or upgrading their e-Commerce platform — or plan to do so within the next six months. Consumer shopping habits are now playing key factor in influencing B2B buying behavior, with 49% of B2B buyers preferring to make work-related purchases from the same web sites they use for personal purchases. “Business buyers are coming online with high expectations across the board,” said Brigid Fyr, Managing Director for North America Omnichannel Commerce at Accenture Interactive — part of Accenture Digital. “With three out of four buyers stating they would buy again from a supplier with an easy-to-use website, sellers have a large opportunity for growth by focusing on making the entire purchasing experience as easy as ordering a book online or downloading music onto a smartphone.” Other notable findings include: When asked to rank the top features or functions they would like B2B suppliers to offer in the selling process, enhanced search functionality on their website (60%) was the primary feature selected, followed by