Interest in headless CMS is growing: Wednesday’s daily brief
Plus Verizon's DOOH suite, and full transparency on Unified ID 2.0.
MarTech’s daily brief features daily insights, news, tips, and essential bits of wisdom for today’s digital marketing leader. If you would like to read this before the rest of the internet does, sign up here to get it delivered to your inbox daily.
Good morning, Marketers, finding the right audience is all about context and situation.
I’ll never forget the first time I drank Gatorade. I ordered it with pizza, and it wasn’t sweet or carbonated like soda, so I was disappointed. This was before it became a global marketing juggernaut. Later, it would satisfy me after a summer day of pickup basketball, when my friends and I tried to “Be Like Mike.” Yes, Michael Jordan was the right messenger for that Gatorade audience, many years ago.
Today, we look at how Gatorade continues to break ground with relevant audiences, and how targeted platforms like Hudl can deliver those specific moments for marketers in search of the right customer at the right time.
Also, new breakthroughs for programmatic DOOH and OOH are transforming the world around us, making it easier to communicate with customers as they gather more in public places under relaxed restrictions.
We’ve also included some updates on Unified ID 2.0 and headless, or hybrid, CMS.
How Gatorade zeroes in on student athletes
Sports drink titan Gatorade recently partnered with Hudl, a platform used by athletes to capture, analyze and even share video clips of their performances, for a new content marketing initiative. The series, “Skills & Drills,” features pro athletes like Boston Celtics All-Star Jayson Tatum delivering training tips to student-athletes of all levels.
Hudl began as a video tool for coaches in 2006 but its popularity exploded as video content became more prevalent on social media. Coaches still use the platform to break down plays and game tape and to communicate with their team, but athletes can also share personal highlight reels from the platform on Facebook and Twitter. In fact, a Hudl presence for student-athletes in the digital age is about as commonplace as Instagram profiles are for photographers and influencers.
It also has 99% penetration in high school football teams, while catering to 40 other sports, and 170,000 total teams at youth, high school and college levels.
At this point, the potential for marketers to leverage niche platforms that host targeted communities is established. Leaving out TikTok and its nearly 800 million global users (of which more than 60% are between 10 and 29 years old), there’s also the success seen by Twitch, a community for gamers, which now has around 140 million monthly active users. Twitch made nearly $2 billion in revenue in 2020 mostly through a mix of advertising, sponsorship and subscription income.
Hudl, which does not disclose revenue numbers, reaches about 5 million athletes on its platform and extends out to as many as 80 million consumers through athlete integrations with other social platforms.
Verizon Media launches full-funnel DOOH suite
Verizon Media announced the launch of a full-funnel digital out of home (DOOH) product suite that aims at enabling advertisers and agencies to plan, execute and measure campaigns in one place, in a self-serve capacity. The suite connects DOOH with other digital channels for omnichannel management and insights.
The key is Verizon Media’s DSP, which includes an insights and forecasting tool, allowing buyers to see availability and pricing against DMA, venue types, media owners and other categories. Advertisers can also retarget DOOH audiences in a privacy-compliant manner across all devices. They can also measure performance using Verizon Media’s identity graph of over 200 billion consent-based consumer touchpoints.
Why we care. As pandemic-related restrictions are lifted, more people will be gathering in public places where DOOH assets can be seen. A single DOOH suite gives advertisers the advantage of orchestrating omnichannel campaigns that leverage real-world out-of-home ads with retargeting on mobile and other devices. Consumers use their phones to navigate the world around them, and by integrating a campaign into this complex ecosystem, brands get closer to customers along their journey.
Full transparency as Unified ID 2.0 goes open source
The Trade Desk’s Unified ID 2.0, persistent identifiers based on authenticated logins, will become fully open source through a collaboration between the Partnership for Responsible Addressable Media (PRAM) Technical Working Group run by IAB Tech Lab.
In January, The Trade Desk passed custody of Unified ID 2.0 to Prebid.org, the open source adtech library and community. The new announcement confirms that the source code base of Unified ID 2.0 is now open source. This means IAB Tech Lab will make the code available under license, and undertake ongoing maintenance of the code.
In practice, anyone will be able to see the code and suggest changes.
Why we care. Widely touted as being the gold standard replacement for third-party cookies (although there are still many other alternatives being developed), Unified ID 2.0 really does now belong to the industry. Does that mean game over for other persistent identifiers? Probably not, although it does raise the question whether there’s a real need or justification for so many.
Site speed and security are driving interest in WordPress alternatives
When you really think about it, it’s interesting that such a huge proportion (65%) of websites (including ours) are created and delivered using an open-source platform launched in 2003 for then-novel bloggers. WordPress has been so successful because its community of developers has made it resilient and versatile, with plug-ins numbering nearly 60,000 allowing for significant customization. However, the consequences of being based on old code that anyone can plug into means the platform suffers from security vulnerabilities and code bloat. The resulting slow-loading insecure pages are exactly what marketers are trying to avoid as they optimize their sites to rank well in search engines.
Meanwhile, people are consuming content on a multitude of devices — from mobile phones to refrigerators to voice assistants — and marketers are looking for efficient ways to reuse and deploy the content they’ve created rather than serving every type of device with its own CMS. These trends are leading more and more marketers — those with a dedicated development team on hand, anyway — to explore the possibilities of headless and hybrid content management systems, which give content creators a user-friendly interface and allow developers to use APIs to distribute their work on devices we haven’t even thought up yet.
This is part of what we’ve learned while developing our newly-released MarTech Intelligence Report on Enterprise Headless & Hybrid CMSs.
Premium inventory opens up for OOH publishers
Premium out-of-home inventory will be made available in an automated workflow due to an update in the industry’s OpenDirect platform, an improvement announced today by the Out of Home Advertising Association of America (OAAA). The announcement of OpenDirect 1.5.1 comes on Day 2 of the OAAA Media Conference.
With the update, OOH companies can open up their premium inventory to agencies and advertisers, and also offer controlled access and improved tracking of inventory across systems. The OAAA has aligned with the IAB Technology Lab’s OpenDirect Working Group to provide this solution. Contributors include big OOH publishers like Clear Channel, JCDecaux and Ocean Outdoor, among others.
Why we care. For marketers that value one-stop programmatic campaigning (see Verizon Media’s DOOH offering above), the OpenDirect update is a step toward modernizing and transforming the OOH landscape for advertisers and publishers alike.
Quote of the day
“Tip for marketing ops pros: remember that strategy should drive technology, not the other way around.” Darrell Alfonso, Global Marketing Operations, Amazon Web Services
Headless and hybrid content management systems: A snapshot
What they are. Headless and hybrid content management systems are software that serves as a repository for textual and other digital content that includes an application programming interface (API) that allows that stored content to be distributed to a variety of platforms. “Hybrid” systems have some of the characteristics of headless systems and some of those of “traditional” content management systems.
Why they’re hot. Most enterprise content management systems are built to deliver content to a desktop web browser, with WordPress being the most popular. However, much has changed since the platform’s start in 2003. People interact with content not just on desktops and laptops, but on their mobile phones, cars, TVs, and other connected devices.
Each device people use requires their unique interface and type of content to deliver the best experience. Brands may want to share content in different “wrappers,” which could include webpages, mobile apps, email, smart speaker apps, or VR apps.
How it works. A headless CMS disconnects the underlying content from the manner of display, making it easier to leverage the same assets across many platforms and devices. Repurposing and reusing content in this manner improves marketers’ ROI and reduces spend on creative efforts. These systems also speed up content delivery, helping brands better meet customer expectations.
Why we care. Enterprises need to deliver the same content in different languages with certain cultural tweaks in each market. This, coupled with the need to present their content on many channels and platforms, has shown many web developers the limitations of PHP formats. This is why so many adopt more modern CMS technologies to improve user experience.