Acxiom Touts Big Savings with New Digital Identifier Technology
October 19, 2010 Alex Woodie
Organizations that send out bulk communications to try and drum up business may soon be able to increase the effectiveness of their marketing campaigns by using new digital identifier technology from Acxiom, a software and services firm that aims to develop and keep accurate contact and background information for … well, basically everybody.
Based in Little Rock, Arkansas, Acxiom has developed a solid reputation for gathering data about consumers (such as their current and past addresses or their credit history), and selling it to organizations that need it, such as an auto dealership assessing the risk of a potential customer, a magazine looking to start up a subscription drive, or perhaps even an online company selling virtual goods on the Internet.
In short, the company maintains a huge database of information, and is able to load it quickly and efficiently onto customers’ systems, including IBM i servers and every other major platform. Each year, information provided by the company participated in more than a trillion “marketing, service, and risk transactions,” or 147 transactions for every man, woman, and child on Earth.
Last week, Acxiom announced what it is calling a breakthrough in customer identification with its new AbiliTec Digital offering. For the first time ever, Acxiom is able to use e-mail addresses and mobile phone numbers to track consumers, instead of just physical identifiers, such as mailing addresses. Since people switch e-mail addresses and cell phone numbers so often, it’s been a difficult way to accurately track people. However, since so much of people’s lives today occurs on the Web and on smart phones, effectively linking the online and offline worlds is seen as a marketing goldmine.
By creating a “digital identifier” based on e-mail addresses and mobile phone numbers, Acxiom says it’s seeing a “dramatic” improvement in the accuracy of consumer information and the marketing activities based on that information.
Its first 20 AbiliTec Digital customers have saved a combined $6 million in marketing expenses, the vendor claims. For example, the new technology has shown that 20 percent of its customers’ leads were already customers. (Obviously, treating an existing customer as a prospect does not impress the customer. It makes them look out of touch and confused.)
Overall, Acxiom says its new technology will contribute to a 10 to 20 percent “lift” in marketing campaigns. That is a huge number, considering all of the time and effort that IT departments put into cleansing their data and preparing it for new sales efforts.