Mark Zagorski is CEO of eXelate, the smart data company that powers smarter digital marketing decisions worldwide for marketers, agencies, platforms, publishers and data providers. The Makegood recently spoke with Mark about his company’s new consumer insights terminal: eXelate optiX
The Makegood: eXelate just launched its new eXelate optiX, a consumer insights terminal that turns digital consumers interactions into real-time, strategic insights for marketers. Can you talk a bit about the development process? How did the idea come about and what has the road been like since then?
Market research is a $30B+ industry worldwide and over $16B in the United States, but it still relies heavily on old instruments like surveys and panels to gain consumer insights. The idea to develop eXelate optiXTM was sparked because eXelate believes that there is a better, faster way for brands to understand consumers through the power of big data. The adtech industry has always focused on how to turn audiences into paying customers; however, marketers, especially brand managers, still want to better understand consumers before they execute tactics like digital media and audience targeting.
Our development process for optiX involved marrying marketer insight needs with the trillions of data points available to us through the eXelate eXchangeTM. Through an extensive beta trial period, we were able to determine the consumer insight categories most relevant to marketers, which we grouped into demographics, finance, passions and purchase.
During Advertising Week 2013, we invited marketers into the optiX beta program to benefit from early access to a web-based terminal that provides comprehensive and immediate consumer insights curated from trillions of online and offline data points. Our beta participants included companies within the top five CPG, Telecommunications, Insurance and Auto Industries, and we’re already seeing strong interest from these categories following our general availability launch in October.
The Makegood: Although the product is new, eXelate has been involved with quite a few brands over the past month for beta testing. What kind of feedback have you been getting?
The feedback that we received from our beta participants was extremely receptive and further solidified our belief that eXelate was bringing an innovation to a market starved for fresh ideas.
eXelate optiX generates immediate insights that are sourced from trillions of offline and online consumer interactions and made available through real-time dashboards. Rather than waiting for lengthy market research cycles or for complicated reports, brands can access consumer insights from optiX within an easy-to-use, intuitive user interface and download the results into presentation quality documents and spreadsheets.
Brand marketers let us know that optiX was able to solve some of the common headaches associated with market research such as the incomplete view of consumers, the long research cycles and the technical complexity of older tools. What we’re able to provide to the market is “Insights-as-a-Service,” which has not existed until now.
The Makegood: optiX is being positioned as a one of a kind service. How does the platform work, specifically? And how could using optiX benefit a marketer?
optiX provides a comprehensive, immediate, and ready system for marketers to get consumer insights-as-a-service. The terminal’s comprehensive view is attributed to eXelate’s census-level data coverage of over 700 million worldwide users across 8,000 consumer behavior segments across multiple channels (web, video, social). Marketers are able to take immediate action on the information because consumer insights are available in real-time due to constant data synchs and marketer-ready dashboard updates. optiX insights are based on data built for action – the same data found in the eXelate eXchange — so that marketers are equipped to act on optiX insights should they choose to execute digital media.
eXelate optiX is easy to utilize. A brand marketer simply identifies consumer insight needs, such as what type of consumer is buying varying types of products. The next step is to tag the channels and funnel stages associated with the products under review. eXelate optiX then indexes a brand’s consumer population against eXelate’s data cloud to provide real-time consumer insights.
eXelate optiX was built to provide insights to pre-execution marketing functions like product strategy, creative, marketing strategy, market research, and PR/Messaging.
The Makegood: This being a new product, there are bound to be some bugs / issues. What kinds have you seen thus far and how have you been addressing them?
To date, we have not encountered any major bugs and/or issues. The most interesting aspect has been working with marketers to identify the right consumer insight needs prior to turning on eXelate optiX so that marketers get comprehensive and immediate answers to core marketing questions. We believe that providing “Insights-as-a-Service” is a fundamentally new way for marketers to tap into an ongoing river of insights, and it will transform how market research is conducted worldwide.
The Makegood: If this technology does what is intended and serves as a disruptive force in the marketing industry, how do you see it developing from there?
We believe this new model will help revolutionize marketing functions such as strategy, creative, messaging, product, and market research – all pre-execution marketing functions. We want to democratize data-driven consumer insights for every marketer. eXelate optiX will soon evolve to include things like international coverage, competitive benchmarking, and predictive analytics. We’re offering a 30-day no cost trial for qualified marketers – interested parties can email optiX@eXelate.com or go to eXelate.com to see if they qualify.
The Makegood: Thank you, Mark