Dig­i­tal mar­keters can’t oper­ate in iso­la­tion. To be effec­tive, they need the input of actu­ar­ies, data ana­lysts, mer­chan­diz­ers, part­ners, and cre­ative teams. They may require data from exter­nal enti­ties such as banks or other busi­ness part­ners to inject into their own mod­els and enable bet­ter pre­dic­tive deci­sions. Inte­grat­ing a tar­get­ing plat­form with other sys­tems such as ana­lyt­ics and cus­tomer rela­tion­ship man­age­ment (CRM) appli­ca­tions can also help mar­keters know their site vis­i­tors bet­ter and increase revenue.

The risk of oper­at­ing in iso­la­tion is that mar­keters’ good inten­tions can be foiled by cir­cum­stances beyond their con­trol. With­out integration—with other groups or with systems—potentially costly mis­takes and lost oppor­tu­ni­ties can result. For exam­ple, if ana­lysts have recently deter­mined that a prod­uct cam­paign is los­ing money for the com­pany, mar­keters need to know imme­di­ately so they can pull related ban­ner con­tent from rota­tion. Or, with regards to sys­tems, some­thing like inven­tory infor­ma­tion is essen­tial to con­sider; if a prod­uct is out of stock, rec­om­mend­ing it to users is likely a los­ing propo­si­tion for con­sumers and the com­pany as well.

To enable truly suc­cess­ful tar­get­ing, data from mul­ti­ple sources needs to feed into a cen­tral­ized sys­tem and influ­ence all con­tent pre­sented. Mar­keters will ben­e­fit most from using a tar­get­ing sys­tem that is open, mean­ing that it allows other stake­hold­ers and exter­nal enti­ties to “plug in” as needed so that deci­sions can be made using dif­fer­ent data sources and vari­ables. Look for a tar­get­ing solu­tion that offers many options and appli­ca­tion pro­gram­ming inter­faces (APIs) for import­ing and export­ing data.

For instance, many of our cus­tomers are using Adobe Ana­lyt­ics solu­tions to pass data into Adobe Tar­get to enrich user pro­files, serve more tar­geted con­tent, and deter­mine the most log­i­cal “next step” for any given cus­tomer. The aggre­gated, cap­tured data is key here, whether it comes from other groups within a com­pany, other sys­tems, or—likely—a com­bi­na­tion of both. The pos­si­ble out­comes are end­less and typ­i­cally favor­able, with the abil­ity to use CRM infor­ma­tion to iden­tify cus­tomers as strong prospects and make appro­pri­ate offers or take count­less other steps using data from finance, inven­tory, part­ner, and addi­tional systems.

The impor­tant take­away is to be sure to con­sider the power of inte­grat­ing a test­ing and tar­get­ing solu­tion with other sys­tems and groups. Because like the say­ing “no man is an island,” tar­get­ing works in much the same way, grow­ing in value the more it touches other teams and systems.