Recently, Marketo, the leading provider of marketing automation software, and Google Cloud announced “a multi-year collaboration to scale Marketo's infrastructure in the public cloud and create integrated solutions for marketers”. What does that mean, you ask? Basically, Marketo will move its products from its own data centers to the Google Cloud platform, thereby extending their marketing activity scale and functionality. This will help marketers better listen, learn and engage with prospects, automating campaigns more accurately (which is essentially the Holy Grail for marketers, right?). And for Google’s part, they extend their mostly consumer-based customer base to include more enterprise B2B organizations.
As a Marketo Gold Partner, we were highly intrigued by this agreement. We had read several articles, discussed the partnership amongst ourselves and, now that the dust has settled, decided we’d wax poetic on what this means for the future of MarTech.
Our take is that Google is not courting Marketo for a purchase or some other larger play as some have suggested. Rather, we believe this is the next logical step for the continued integration of MarTech and AdTech.
A couple years ago, Marketo introduced the concept of Ad Bridge. For those who don’t know, Ad Bridge allows us to create custom audiences in Marketo, based on demographic and activity data, and push that audience over to key advertising platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, RocketFuel, etc. to drive highly relevant advertising. With this native integration, your Marketo Smart Lists become powerful custom audiences in some of the biggest advertising platforms on the market.
Now consider that the US internet ad industry grew 21.8 percent (from $59.6 billion to $72.5 billion) last year, according to the Interactive Advertising Bureau. You also may have heard the bad news: Google and Facebook account for almost all of that growth.
Now imagine a world where Marketo and AdBridge can integrate into Google Search and Google Remarketing in the same robust way it works with Facebook… the marriage is almost complete. This gives Marketers the ability to target, based on user demographics and activities, their advertising and email from a single platform by leveraging all the analytical data captured in Marketo.
Think about it another way: Let’s say you are a shoe company, marketing to men, aged between 20-35, in Cleveland, OH. What if you could leverage Marketo to further segment your advertising by showing an ad for LeBron’s new shoe to people who read your blog on basketball? Creepy? Maybe. Effective? Absolutely.
While we don’t think Google is going to buy Marketo (well, maybe – they’re Google and can buy whatever they want), we do think two massive industry leaders are coming together in a way that could shake up MarTech and AdTech in the next few years. We’re excited to see how it all plays out!