MarketShare – a provider of marketing analytics software – announced on Tuesday (March 15) that it had partnered with leading telecoms operator Deutsche Telekom, following successful trials in the US with subsidiary T-Mobile.   

The partnership sees MarketShare monitoring and optimising for cross-channel consumer behaviour on the path to purchase. 

With Deutsche Telekom toting €69.2 billion in net revenue last year alone, it’s clearly no small undertaking, and in a time where telcos are fast becoming some of the world’s largest gatekeepers of consumer data. 

PerformanceIN took the opportunity to find out how MarketShare plans to approach the task by speaking to Jean-Philippe Durrios, managing director of international marketing services at MarketShare’s parent company Neustar. 

Deutsche Telekom presumably has access to masses of data on its customers. What’s MarketShare’s current plan to make use of it all? 

Jean-Philippe Durrios: Our multi-touch attribution platform leverages detailed customer transaction and CRM data to reconstruct and better understand Deutsche Telekom’s customer journeys, enabling planning and course correction decisions to drive sales. We complement it with other data sources such as seasonal factors, demographic data, etc. to provide a holistic view that includes digital, offline and other factors that influence purchase decisions. Our solution’s predictive insights and recommendations will allow Deutsche Telekom to provide more relevant, more targeted and - therefore less spammy - experiences to their customers and prospects.

You’ve already worked with the Deutsche Telekom-owned T-Mobile in the States on a pilot programme. Results must have been positive? 

JD: Yes, the results have been positive as publicly stated by Mike Sievert - then CMO of T-Mobile - at the ANA Masters conference in 2014.

We have a long-standing relationship with T-Mobile in the US and appreciate the partnership and market leadership in embracing data driven decision making to drive growth – it’s a company that clearly sets the pace in the industry. 

O2 partnered with VisualIQ to gain similar insight into individual profiles in 2014 – it’s not an industry first – but will the new partnership bring any new hands to the network data card table? 

JD: While we cannot comment on the engagement of O2 with VIQ, the Deutsche Telekom/MarketShare partnership will create the most comprehensive solution for advertising portfolio management in the industry. The combination of expanded data sources, advanced analytics, software tools for reporting, scenario planning and optimisation and adoption management will make these analyses actionable and an integral part of how Deutsche Telekom’s business is managed.

You mentioned in the statement that attribution modeling would integrate offline analytics as well – could you give us anoverview of how you’ll both garner and tie all these data-points together to get closer to a ‘single view’ of Deutsche Telekom’s customers? 

JD: The challenge in analysing the response to advertising is that different channels create data streams at different levels of granularity. While online search or display might be traceable back to an individual customer, TV advertising is measured through weekly ratings. MarketShare combines time-series models of population-level responses with customer choice models for individual response probability to create a unified model of customer response. These models incorporate both individual level advertising impressions and population-level data to describe how consumers are influenced by all types of advertising as well as other market forces like competitor’s marketing or seasonality.

Telcos are fast becoming some of digital advertising’s biggest gatekeepers of consumer data – do you think they could be nipping on the heels of firms like Google and Facebook in terms of the data they can offer advertisers within the next few years? 

JD: MarketShare believes that Telcos are definitely strong players in the space that can provide unique insights into consumer behavior and, as such, move the industry forward in helping advertisers engage with their customers and prospects in a more relevant way. That said, we’re seeing the emergence of identity frameworks that extend beyond what any single participant in the industry can gather.

How would you provide a snapshot of the ‘end goal’ to the partnership, and what kind of hurdles do you expect to have to leap in order to achieve this? 

JD: Success for our partnership with Deutsche Telekom will first mean that functions across the organisation will make connected, data-driven, decisions all the way from marketing strategy, financial planning, down to programmatic buying.

Second, we generate most our business from word-of-mouth, thanks to delighted customers who are more than willing to be references or even refer business to us.

The typical hurdles to reaching this nirvana state are tied to managing change and having a clear path to building out the necessary capabilities over time, and in the right order. Our experienced customer success teams partner with our clients to develop the appropriate data strategies, trainings and scalable insights adoption programs to ensure that customers like Deutsche Telekom get to link what matters as quickly and reliably as possible.