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How the Best Marketers Use Data with Affinity Solutions CEO, Jonathan Silver

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By now you’ve probably heard a lot of our guests talk about the need for marketers to have a 360-degree of their customers. But that begs the question why? What makes up that 360-degree view and what benefits does having all this data actually do for your business?

“[Data] is no longer just a marketing function it’s the whole enterprise.It’s real estate it’s where do I open stores? Where do I close stores? It’s merchandising, what products should I sell? How should they be priced? How should they be displayed? All relying on real-time data. What’s happened is the CMO’s role has become much more central.”

Jonathan Silver is the CEO of Affinity Solutions, a data-led intelligence platform that uses purchase signals to help marketers make better decisions. Jonathan and his company are putting all that data to good use and on this episode of Marketing Trends, he explains how. Jonathan dives into what those purchase signals are and how they are helping marketers compile a 360-degree view of their consumers’ behavior. Plus, he reveals what the next phase of personalization is and how marketers can attack it.

Main Takeaways:

  • Hyper-Personalization: Marketers’ personalization efforts are evolving from simple OOH advertising and targeted ads to individual immersive experiences that include the ability to personalize screens, provide product suggestions, and  use in-store overlays to cater to individual consumers.
  • I Can See Clearly Now: Data has never been more important to the overall success of a company’s marketing strategy than it is today. But while data allows marketers to predict trends, and set prices, it’s also allowing those same marketers to put together a 360-degree view of a consumer’s behavior. By creating this holistic view, marketers can see what consumers are doing outside of their stores, websites, and individual interactions. Without data, marketers are only getting a partial view of the customer journey.
  • A Single Source of Truth: As cookies fade away and privacy regulations continue to change, marketers must adjust how they collect information about their consumers and no longer rely on multiple third-party data sources to provide them with valuable insights about their customers. By having a single source of truth, which is a single platform where marketers can access their data, marketers can freely trust where their data lives.

Key Quotes:

“We realized that data is extremely important because in today’s world, unless you have a 360-degree view of consumer behavior, and unless you can see what they’re doing outside your own stores, outside of your own website, outside of your own interaction with the customer, you’re getting a very partial view.”

“The data that we are accessing, which is more than just credit and debit card data, it’s called a purchase graph. It’s consumer spend across retailers, categories, payment devices, it’s a look into your competitor’s cash register.” 

“Path to purchase is as important as the actual purchase itself. So having a source of truth that we have is valuable, but being able to look at that as linkable to other datasets allows us to really see that journey.”

“If you look at the pandemic and you look at the businesses that have been successful, the characteristics of those businesses is they were highly data-centric.”

“There is data out there that can map every single ad that a competitor, or even adjacent businesses, ran. So you can start to look at the behavior of people in those markets where those ads ran as a proxy for how successful their campaigns are.” 

“[Data] is no longer just a marketing function, it’s the whole enterprise, and this may be academic for those businesses that have gone here, but it’s real estate it’s where do I open stores? Where do I close stores? It’s merchandising, what products should I sell? How should they be priced? How should they be displayed? All relying on real-time data. What’s happened is the CMOs role has become much more central.”


Jonathan Silver is Founder and CEO of Affinity Solutions. Affinity is the authoritative source of truth for news outlets, not-for-profit, research firms, and businesses in the US and the only source for purchase insights that can be analyzed by demographic, geographic, lifestyle segment, and political affiliation. Jonathan’s vision for Affinity is to transform data insights into experiences that improve people’s lives. He is a life-long entrepreneur and graduate of Wharton and University of Pennsylvania School of Engineering.

Marketing Trends podcast is brought to you by Salesforce. Discover marketing built on the world’s number one CRM: Salesforce. Put your customer at the center of every interaction. Automate engagement with each customer. And build your marketing strategy around the entire customer journey. Salesforce. We bring marketing and engagement together. Learn more at salesforce.com/marketing.

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Episode 217