Matt Ramerman, President at Sinch for Marketing talks about the ways in which mobile marketing and personalized messaging can deliver exceptional customer experiences
In a world driven by technology, a data-driven approach to marketing is the cost of entry.
1. Tell us about your role at Sinch?
As president of Sinch For Marketing, I lead a very talented team focused on creating technologies that will transform customer relationships by making marketing and service communications highly personalized and deeply relevant through high-engagement mediums such as video and rich messaging. We specialize in omnichannel conversations on mobile, the one single device that brings brands the closest to consumers.
2. Can you tell us about your journey into the market?
Sinch For Marketing was born out of Vehicle, where I was CEO and co-founder. Prior to founding Vehicle, I was a principal with one of the largest privately held full-service digital agencies in the U.S., working with iconic brands such as AT&T, T-Mobile, HTC, Microsoft, and Vail Mountain Resorts among many others.
3. How do you think technology is enhancing the marketing sector?
Technology is pushing marketing full speed ahead into the future of customer engagement. For example, RCS technology, which we like to describe as “next-generation data carrier messaging,” brings to life the most popular communications channel in the world, SMS, by turning every message into an enriching two-way, interactive conversation complete with rich media and dynamic video. This will take what enterprises are already enjoying with SMS and expand upon those features without the need for an external texting platform, enhancing marketing strategy without the hassle.
4. How has a data-driven approach optimized the performance of marketing professionals?
In a world driven by technology, a data-driven approach to marketing is the cost of entry.
Sinch For Marketing uses explicit data implicity modeling to anticipate and personalize customer experiences through immersive video and rich media. It is critical that marketers and brands personalize all messaging on mobile because consumers are more inclined now than ever to block out advertising and promotional content. Still, we are a society fueled by information; we crave it. Customers want to know about the specific products that matter to them from the brands they follow and care about. This makes hyper-personalization key to a modern customer experience and data is the only way we can continue to strengthen the information that helps us make this content possible.
5. Can you explain how Sinch For Marketing technology empowers marketers?
Sinch For Marketing is focused on helping brands transform the customer experience through personalized messaging. Our proprietary platform, equipped with omnichannel messaging capabilities (MMS, SMS, RCS, WhatsApp, Instagram, Facebook Messenger, email, social, advertising, web), offers a dynamic, highly-differentiated approach to marketing.
For instance, we use RCS to empower marketers and facilitate two-way conversation (push and pull) with customers. In addition, due to its ability to deliver rich media and dynamic content, RCS can be leveraged to support employee training and collaboration. Moreso, these capabilities allow marketers to push out content via an RCS chatbot enabling remote workers to not only receive but also respond to videos and other materials to enrich their experiences.
Technology like Sinch For Marketing elevates the customer experience, which in turn empowers marketers to better communicate and sell their products or services to key customer populations.
6. Why do you think analytical mobile marketing is gaining more of a focus for marketers and organizations?
App Annie’s State of Mobile 2020 report found that consumers averaged 3 hours and 40 minutes on their mobile devices in 2019; 50% of this time was spent on social and messaging apps. Advertisers, aware that consumers are spending more time on mobile than ever, are expected to increase their mobile ad spend by 26% in 2020. As such, mobile has become a chaotic and competitive space, and marketers must work that much harder to capture the divided and distracted attention of their consumers.
A PWC consumer intelligence report found that 65% of consumers say a positive brand experience is more influential than great advertising. To cultivate this positive brand experience, mobile marketers must enact personalized, rich engagement that employs consumer preferences and data to communicate the right messages at the right time. Mobile communications and conversational messaging via channels — both old (SMS) and new (RCS, OTT services like WhatsApp) — are seeing accelerated advancements, providing mobile marketers the opportunity to reach consumers in a personalized and contextual manner on the channel of their choice.
7. How do you think channel-specific experiences help to better attract and retain customers?
Today, true brand loyalty relies heavily on the overall customer experience. Where marketers could once buy customers’ loyalty, the increased noise of mobile has created a more complex loyalty landscape. Marketers now have to earn customers with exceptional experiences and rich mobile engagement. More than just winning the customer, reducing churn must also be a top priority. Intentional, channel-specific communication cultivates and strengthens customer relationships and allows brands to offer the most contextually-relevant experiences and personalized content on the channels that matter most to their customers.
8. What advice would you like to give to technology startups?
As you are building your platform, it’s OK to have some features that are at parity with the market as long as your single point of differentiation is one-of-a-kind.Stay focused and never give up, even in the darkest moments. As a startup, success and failure can be the difference between a single customer implementation, which can come at any time. Keep driving towards your conviction; the market is desperate for authentic, differentiated technologies.
9. What digital innovations do you think will drive marketing technology in 2020?
I predict that RCS messaging will be one of the key drivers for marketing technology in 2020 and beyond. RCS will be monumental in progressing how marketers interact with customers on a direct-to-consumer basis, allowing for two-way, conversational commerce that encourages marketers to open up personalized, multi-dimensional dialogue with the customer. RCS utilizes SMS, the most popular and widely used mobile communications channel in the world, to deliver enriching, engaging messages to consumers.
10. How do you prepare for an AI-centric world?
As someone who is passionate in providing meaningful communication experiences through technology, I believe in approaching an increasingly automated world as humanly as possible. When businesses realize that it’s time to stop acting like robots and start acting more human, effective marketers can continue to thrive in business and customers can continue to find enriched experiences that feel genuine.
11. What are some major/recent developments you are planning?
We are continuing to drive global omnichannel distribution into our platform to provide brands the ability to reach any customer in any market across any channel with dynamic personalized experiences. You will continue to see Sinch consolidating channels in order to reach every corner of the globe.
12. Can you tell us about your team and how it supports you?
Leadership responsibility for Sinch For Marketing is shared among key groups within the organization, including Account Service, Business Development, Product, Technology and Creative Development. Our own Creative Development team, part of our managed services group, happens to be the biggest power user of our tech — and our Creative Director provides some of the best insight into tech evolution and innovation as a result of real-world application.
13. What movie inspires you the most?
I really enjoyed “Current War”, the story of two powerful entrepreneurs and technical inventors George Westinghouse and Thomas Edison. I am inspired by the resolve and conviction of these visionaries and their respective quest to change society for the better through their inventions.
14. We have heard that you have a very joyful work culture, can you share some fun pictures of your workplace?
Yes, see the attached photo of our Seattle Leadership Team celebrating the closing of a record 2019.
15. Can you give us a glance of the applications you use on your phone?
The #1 used app on my phone is my native messaging app: iMessage. I use this to communicate in real-time with my wife as well as with all the senior leaders in the company. The next apps I use the most are the New York Times and Washington Post apps — I get nearly all of my cultural and geo-political news from these two publications.
I also use the Netflix app a lot. My wife and I watch all of our movies together from our iPad or iPhone. Other apps I rely on include the HomeKit, where I can manage our home automation systems from anywhere in the world, and LinkedIn, which I use to connect with other thought leaders in the tech business.