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Accelerating the marketing technology glue that binds WPP’s integrated value proposition

WPP and its companies bring together the data, insights, creativity, retail experience, and digital ability that brands need to drive business growth in a world of fast-paced, tech-driven change. Acceleration is the WPP Digital company that makes clients’ digital marketing strategies come to life with its marketing technology solutions and expertise.

Few businesspeople will dispute the impact that technology and an empowered consumer has upon their companies, brands and marketing. Yet there are many that are reacting to digital technology in a defensive and ad hoc manner rather than seizing it as a strategic opportunity to transform their businesses.

Technology is changing business operating models

Many executives at traditional brands love Apple, Uber and Google, and depend on these revolutionary services and products in their daily lives. Each of these companies was a first or early digital mover in a market that they reinvented–transport in Uber’s case; music, mobile computing and telephony in Apple’s; media and mobility in Google’s.

They redrew the boundaries of industries by thinking of ways to make life better for consumers using digital technologies. And they weren’t shy to discard legacy thinking and business models while they were doing so. Their early and innovative application of new technologies created a serious competitive advantage for them and the corresponding high margins.

It is about putting the consumer at the centre

Every brand can and should be using similar digital technologies to revitalise its business. The promise of digital technology is to bring new levels of immediacy, accountability and customer-centricity to marketing. As marketers, we can now manage brand engagement and experiences throughout all brand touch points.

We do this by using data about consumer’s needs, requirements and behaviour at brand touch points. Lateral interpretation of this data will give brands a greater competitive advantage. Instead reducing creativity, new technologies are forcing brands to become more creative to stay ahead of their competitors.

What’s more, consumers expect marketers to know them and understand their needs. The demands of today’s consumer mean that the integration of marketing and business systems is not optional. Customers don’t appreciate it when their bank tries to “sell” them a credit card and they already hold one. The reach and immediacy of social media means that every mistake a brand makes is magnified, so the margin for error is thinner than ever before.

Why don’t we “get it”?

Many marketers and agencies still underestimate how profoundly the world has changed. Sure, they may experiment with putting up a Facebook page, but few have a strategic conversation about why one is needed or create metrics to benchmark its performance.

Many marketers and agencies still see marketing as a separate discipline to technology, and digital as a separate world from analogue. Rather than using technology as a strategic catalyst for growth and profitability across a business, they use it as a hammer to hit a specific nail. This means we seldom see technology used for what it is really capable of: transforming the operating model of a business.

Whether you are a marketer that wants to use technology better than your competitors, or whether you are a brand owner that wants to change its entire business value proposition, technology is more central to business now than ever before. The data algorithms that can be applied by brands, enable innovation on a scale never seen before, minute-by-minute.

WPP is in a unique position to be the catalyst and elixir for these changes

The depth and breadth of WPP’s skills and capabilities means our group is uniquely positioned to help clients make sense of the digital world. We are positioned right at the centre of digital change, bringing together data, insights, creativity, retail experience, and digital ability.

We are highly skilled, connected and unencumbered by the trapping of the past, positioning us perfectly to help clients navigate the digital landscape. Our biggest challenge is to leverage this collective strength and position ourselves in the centre of the global changes facing brands.

For WPP, and for Acceleration in particular, this means our mandate with clients is expanding. It is no longer only about how we can leverage our unparalled resources to make the marketing of clients more impactful, creative and results-driven. It is also about helping our clients to think laterally about their markets and compete in new ways.

No other group of companies has such a wide array of specialist services that enhance the depth of customer experience. As a group we can not only advise and consult, but also deliver on the ground. By offering a vertically integrated set of solutions, we can deepen the value we deliver to our clients as well as drive more group-wide value out of our client relationships.

From research to gain consumer insights in remote places, to delivering customer experiences across media types, to enabling commerce, to designing inspirational brands and marketing messages, we drive consumer behaviour every day in a multitude of ways.

We have insight and expertise across many client brands, technologies and best-practice applications. Furthermore, our livelihood depends on creating innovative solutions to client challenges. It is in our DNA and culture.

Acceleration: digital technology natives that is at the core of these changes

At Acceleration, we know marketing technology in a practical and intimate way because we have implemented and supported it for over 15 years. We understand how marketing technology integrates into classical marketing to deliver an integrated and superior brand experience for the consumer.

We think deeply and widely about how new technologies can impact the way in which value is created for consumers — hence we bridge the gap between digital and traditional marketing as well as between marketing and the technology that enables it.

Because we have a wide collective insight across the disciplines within marketing inside of our organisation, we are able to apply that across the many specialist role-players within WPP.

We can assist a client regardless of whether its major needs lie in defining a digital ambition or delving into the specifics of data architecture and integration that will enable its strategy to come to life. Our expertise also extends to integrating digital and business systems to deliver a consistent consumer experience.

Technology lies at the core of the WPP value proposition to drive client brands forward

Whatever any part of WPP does, must create, maintain and grow client businesses. It must attract new customers for them and enable new revenue streams. It needs to retain and grow existing customers. It needs to achieve better than average growth for client brands. It needs to strengthen and entrench competitive advantage.

Ultimately, through assisting clients to manage the lifetime value of their consumers, it must increase the client share price. These days, it must also do it better, faster and cheaper.

Acceleration is the independent technology partner that puts the marketing technology in place to enable WPP companies to offer seamless marketing interventions to group clients. We work with WPP client teams to offer clients an integrated approach that pulls in the breadth and depth of the WPP expertise, from research to the creative agencies.

Some ways we add value include:

  • Crafting a marketing technology strategy for clients as part of WPP client teams.
  • Assessing the data requirements that will enable a seamless technology brand experience for clients’ customers.
  • Linking the customer decision journey with the digital brand touch points.
  • Putting the marketing technology platforms and required metrics in place to measure and manage campaign results and the outcomes of digital initiatives.
  • Leveraging technology to assess the online behaviour of customers as well as the online performance of client brands.
  • Providing the marketing data for management reporting.

We know about technology, but our obsession is with helping brands become more competitive, innovative, customer-centric and profitable through better use of technology and data in their marketing practices.

AccelerationGeneral News
About the author

Acceleration enables the transformation of marketing organisations. By building new data and technology-enhanced capability Acceleration stewards a step change from marketing which is fragmented, static and product-centric, to marketing that is orchestrated, agile and customer-centric.

Part of Wunderman Thompson, Acceleration employs 150 strategic marketing technologists globally.

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