As we near the close of Oracle’s 3 day Modern Marketing Experience event in London this week, it’s a good chance to recap on what’s really stood out for us. It’s been a great event full of momentum and one which saw a lot of traffic – over 1000 people have attended and participated over the past three days, and Oracle have done a fabulous job of really taking industry leadership. They are also providing leadership around ecosystems and partnering, which gives me great confidence as a business owner. Great work Oracle.

And it has been a truly modern marketing experience. The old Oracle reputation of sharp/aggressive sales practices has been replaced by considered enterprise thinking and doing the right thing by the customer.

Here are my top five highlights from the event:

  1. Where Marketing and IT (almost) meet: For the keynote, Oracle’s VP of Product John Stetic wearing a business jacket with the built-in hoodie set the audience and Twitter alight. His #hoodieblazer fashion faux-pas which was a great metaphor for the challenge of IT and marketing co-existing.
  2. Marketing needs to man-up (and marketers need to adapt strategy). The speakers and audience agreed: The continued over-focus on open-rates and click throughs is nothing more than digital trickery. Focusing on outputs (rather than outcomes) has never lead to marketers being noted and promoted. Keep it simple; make money, save money or reinvent the business for new advantage or sources of revenue. Simple. 
  3. The Long Road to the Cloud: Marketing cloud is still 10 years behind CRM, we have a long journey ahead of us. But it’s exciting times.
  4. Big data is the elephant in the room: Data analytics has got to be the next acquisition for Oracle. So who is best in class, Tableau or Qlikview?
  5. Bluekai is boy band hot: Prospects love it and are queuing up for more. Bluekai is the One Direction to Oracle's REM/U2 - depending which continent you're from.

Content also deserves a special mention as it is has been a focus throughout the event, and we were pleased to hear the speakers and audience saying exactly what we preach daily: that the real intelligence is in joining up the dots around the customer touchpoints for a view of the 'total experience'.

We call this the intelligent engagement. Ironically, this requires deploying marketing technology from the backend infrastructure out, and not the content and creative view in. The good news for marketers is that Oracle are further down the path than most. Exciting times indeed.