MarTech360 Interview With Tim Glomb, VP Content & Data, CM Group


“The core value of relationship marketing is the human-centric approach to actually understanding an individual’s wants and needs.”

Hi, Tim, could you walk us through your professional journey so far?

My journey started in the 1990’s working in the music and entertainment industry touring the globe with rock bands. Fast forward to the early 2000’s as I transitioned to TV producing #1 rated cable TV shows with the likes of Jackass and skateboarding superstar Bam Margera.  I then joined a content agency as branded content on TV and digital took over in the late 2000’s.  We created content for brands such as Rockstar Energy Drink, crocs, McDonald’s and others.  

In 2011, I joined Mark Cuban’s team and helped rebrand and digitize the marketing efforts for AXS TV, the largest independent TV net in NAmer.  I then joined SUN Microsystems co-founder Svott McNealy’s startup Wayin by developing social intelligence and content feeds for news, entertainment and other media properties.  I now sit as head of global content at the CM Group telling the stories of marketers using our relationship marketing platforms to engage hundreds of millions of consumers across email, SMS and loyalty.

What sets CM Group apart from the competition?

The CM Group has acquired, built and integrated the largest collection of independently owned, marketer friendly relationship marketing platforms that exist today. If you need to acquire, engage and retain customers, from a single pizza joint to Starbucks and American Airlines, we have a solution for every brand regardless of their industry, size or region on the globe

How are digital marketing technology trends shaping business strategies to effectively reach the target audience?

The ability to acquire net new consumers into your database, while collecting critical zero-party data, is changing brands’ ability to build real relationships with consumers while personalizing content and offers through trust and transparency.  ZPD (zero-party data) is rich with psychographic information that can not be inferred or deduced which ensures your marketing efforts provide value and are delivered in the right moments and channels.  It’s also explicitly given to brands from the consumer so it transcends the issues of brokered, bartered and inferred data such as third party cookies while giving the consumer a level of trust and control over their data.

Also Read: MarTech360 Interview With Hunter Montgomery, Chief Marketing Officer, ChurnZero

How does relationship marketing help in increasing the lifetime value of a customer and reduce customer acquisition cost in the longer run?

The core value of relationship marketing is the human-centric approach to actually understanding an individual’s wants and needs.  Much like the interaction between 2 humans meeting for the first time, it’s a conversation that has both parties asking questions, processing and storing that shared information to move the conversation in a mutually beneficial direction.  If I met you and learned you were a vegetarian I would not turn around and invite you to join my carnivore group. 

Brands must understand their audience as individuals to match and provide real value to the consumer when it comes to their products and services. Sometimes the product isn’t right for the consumer, but other times you just need to understand their pain point or desire to then surface your product or service in the right light.  You can do that much easier these days when you ask and listen to your audience rather than blasting them with more ads, emails or offers they don’t care about. 

Do you think zero-party data provides a truly personalized marketing experience for customers? Does it improve the effectiveness of an organization’s personalized marketing efforts?

For all the reasons stated before, yes and yes.  The more you ask and listen, the better your offers and pitch will be received.  Technology exists today to do this at scale.  Discovery Communications garnered 100 million sweepstakes entries while collecting an average of 5 zero-party, psychographic data points on each individual entrant.  Things like if they own or rent a home, which home improvement projects they had planned even their budgets. 

Their marketing and advertising budgets and efforts were squarely focused on a value exchange (chance to win a dream home) to acquire net new contacts while gleaning the individual info needed to match back home improvement offers from their ad partners, such as home improvement retailers and brands.  Brands, especially in a recession, need to pivot a significant amount of energy and budget into acquiring both net new consumers as well as psychographic information on their existing customers.

As we are about to enter a cookieless digital world, how will the cookieless ad experience impact marketers and the end consumers?

We had contextualized ads a decade ago.  And context is important, but it’s a step backward in advertising.  Showing me a beer ad during a football game is contextual.  I believe large brands will do well with branding based ads.  Creative that makes me remember the brand.  But smaller brands, DTC brands and small retailers especially, need to double down on owned channels like email and SMS which cost next to $0 to send. 

Once you have a platform to acquire contact data (emails and mobile numbers primarily), understand those people (ZPD) and then engage them (send email, SMS, in app messages, personalize your own websites, etc) you can really hone your message.  Advertising will be more akin to a wide, but scattered shotgun blast where email and SMS deliver sniper-like personalized messages and offers.  Plus many consumers, in a cookie-driven ad world, have already said that email is the #1 driver for purchase over social, social ads and banner ads as per the 2022 Consumer Trends Index.

How do you envisage the future of content marketing in the years to come?

I see brands engaging more across the email and SMS channels with ads being the secondary channel to refresh their message.  I see those owned channels taking center stage as email providers add more rich functionality like video and animation in-email.  These channels can easily be personalized with creative and offers matching an individual’s needs. DTC brands will excel here as they are generally more scrappy and nimble than bigger brands.  They’ll prove that these channels perform at scale and others will follow suit. 

Could you name the apps/platforms that you use for marketing/sales?

We use a few B2B platforms like 6Sense for intent data from brands looking for our services.  We also use Casted video platform to break down long form video content into snackable bites that allow us to provide a personalized and condensed, focused value to our clients and prospects. 

Could you name one other VP/C-level personnel that you would like to see featured here?

Andy Gladwin, who heads our global mobile initiatives and is an acclaimed thought leader in that space.

What is the one piece of advice you would give to those who wish to enter the MarTech world?

Stay creative, try to poke holes in technology and theories others are touting (including mine) and keep the customer in the center.  The voice of the customer is powerful and should be heard, but also filter it so as not to become a slave to it.  Rather, decode the core problems and pain points you are hearing, as others will have the same need.

Thanks, Tim!

Tim lives at the intersection of content, technology and psychographic data. These are the key ingredients future-proofing today’s marketing department. Tim‘s experience as a team leader and change agent has proven to deliver cutting edge, differentiating strategies for his clients and partners that move businesses forward. In an age where data drives action, yet the consumer landscape lives on ever-shifting sands, Tim‘s ability to navigate adversity while focusing on business outcomes sets him apart from your cookie-cutter marketing execs.
The CM Group is the globe’s largest collection of independently owned relationship marketing solutions. These afford brand marketers the ability to acquire, understand, engage and retain customers to forge long lasting relationships.  With solutions rooted in email, sms, personalization and loyalty, the CM Group serves brands of all sizes, from single location to global enterprises, and has product lines with capabilities across a wide range of industries.

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