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AdRoll Creates New Division to Target B2B Marketers

By Richard Adhikari CRM Buyer ECT News Network
Feb 28, 2018 9:33 AM PT

AdRoll on Tuesday announced RollWorks, a new division that will provide business-to-business marketers with highly targeted, personalized marketing at scale across multiple channels and devices.

The result of a corporate restructuring, RollWorks will focus specifically on B2B marketing, while the AdRoll business unit will focus on the company's legacy products for e-commerce small and mid-sized businesses.

AdRoll Inc., renamed "AdRoll Group," will oversee the two business units and power their technology.

The RollWorks Mission

RollWorks provides B2B marketers with account-based marketing, retargeting and prospecting solutions.

Users can connect their CRM or marketing automation system to RollWorks, and their data will be matched with AdRoll's pool of opt-in intent data.

RollWorks reporting provides transparency at the account and contact level. Its CRM and marketing automation connectors let users see campaign data in their Salesforce, Marketo or Hubspot dashboards, and share that with the rest of the organization.

"The advantage of connectors is faster time to value and lower ongoing management costs for customers," said Rebecca Wettemann, VP of research at Nucleus Research.

"AdRoll's built a great business with integration into companies such as Marketo and Salesforce for visibility into the customer acquisition lifecycle, starting with ads," noted Cindy Zhou, principal analyst at Constellation Research.

Users who have a list of targets can find new contacts within their accounts and use custom ads to nurture those already in their CRM system.

For those who don't have a target account list, RollWorks offers filmographics. AdRoll's act-alike targeting is another way users can identify new prospects that behave like their best customers.

RollWorks lets users "run both broad and narrow campaigns at scale," said Toby Gabriner, CEO of AdRoll Group and president of the RollWorks division. "Whether you know who your prospects are or not, you can reach them."

RollWorks currently is available for U.S.-based customers.

The Value of ABM

"Every sales kickoff I've attended this spring has addressed ABM as a big objective," Nucleus' Wettemann told CRM Buyer.

Launching RollWorks "lets AdRoll focus on this specific area and compete more effectively against niche companies where B2B is the core focus," she said.

"With the increase of content consumed online, re-targeting ads is becoming a core part of the B2B marketer's campaign mix," Constellation's Zhou told CRM Buyer.

AdRoll competes with companies such as Google and Terminus on the ABM side, she said.

Players in the ABM space will continue making announcements to better differentiate their capabilities, particularly in the artificial intelligence space, against both larger and specialist competitors, Wettemann predicted.

AdRoll's Strategy

"Over the past few years, AdRoll has expanded their product set and offerings beyond core digital advertising to include features supporting ABM, prospecting and personalization," Zhou pointed out.

AdRoll last spring launched ABM capabilities with AdRoll ABM for B2B marketers. That let users integrate with CRM and marketing automation solutions like Marketo, and let them personalize ads specifically for their target contact. It made AdRoll ABM generally available later in the year.

AdRoll ABM "saw huge success," Gabriner said. "So much success, in fact, that we realized that to take B2B marketing to the next level, we would need to invest a lot more resources into B2B-specific solutions." AdRoll decided "to build something bespoke," which led to the creation of RollWorks.

"The reorganization to two different business units will help them with business planning, as the key performance indicators for B2B and B2C are different," Zhou observed.

On the other hand, AdRoll "has grown quickly to a solid mid-size company with public disclosure of 2016 revenue of around (US)$300 million per year," Zhou pointed out. "Is this the right time to split the business, and will that confuse customers? Time will tell."

Richard Adhikari has been an ECT News Network reporter since 2008. His areas of focus include cybersecurity, mobile technologies, CRM, databases, software development, mainframe and mid-range computing, and application development. He has written and edited for numerous publications, including Information Week and Computerworld. He is the author of two books on client/server technology. Email Richard.

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