Good morning, what do WhatsApp, WeChat, and Bold360 have in common?

They’re all part of a new integration with LogMeIn’s Bold360 customer engagement platform, making it possible for users to interact with customers via WhatsApp and WeChat in addition to other messaging platforms.

By adding WhatsApp and WeChat integrations, LogMeIn is creating a more comprehensive live chat platform — and catching up with other platforms like LivePerson’s Maven conversational bot solution that offers integration across various channels, including SMS, Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp. “We are working to add more channels including Apple Business Chat and Google Business Messaging, as well as creating new efficiencies for agents and supervisors who manage these channels behind the scenes,” said LogMeIn’s VP of Customer Engagement Products Yaniv Reznik in the news announcement.

Music streaming service Pandora is asking users to say “yes” to interactive audio ads in a new interactive audio ads test, the company announced Thursday. The ads require users to verbally engage before the rest of the ad’s content is played. For its initial rollout, Pandora has partnered with Doritos, Ashley HomeStores, Unilever, Wendy’s, Turner Broadcasting, Comcast and Nestle to create audio ads that entertain, present tips, etc. to grab users’ attention and entice them to listen to the rest of the ad. With this interactive level of engagement, advertisers may be able to extract more insights about what users are interested in – which means more qualified leads in the long run. 

Keep scrolling for more news, including a Pro Tip on how brands can still maximize marketing tactics for the holiday rush, and more. 

Taylor Peterson,
Deputy Editor

Pro Tip

Maximizing the holiday home stretch and beyond

The five-day stretch from Thanksgiving to Cyber Monday was record-breaking for e-commerce but brands still have more time for profitable sales on Amazon. “Looking at year-over-year Amazon data, what’s clear is that your holiday fortunes are not made or broken on that period alone,” explains Andrew Waber of Teikametrics. “With some time still remaining until the Dec. 22 shipping cutoff, there are some tactical levers brands can pull. By consistently bidding to its value on an individual product level, brands can bring in more profitable sales on Amazon during these high traffic periods. Additionally, this is a good practice year-round, as it minimizes the risk of wasting ad spend while allowing for scale when a bump in user purchase activity warrants additional investment.”

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2019 benchmark report: brand vs. non-brand traffic in Google Shopping

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On the Move

C-suite transitions at the Academy of Country Music, Schwan’s Co., Google and JP Morgan

The Academy of Country Music (ACM) has promoted its CMO, Damon Whiteside, to CEO. After serving in the CMO role for six years now, he will take over as the organization’s lead on January 6, splitting his time between Los Angeles and Nashville. “His experience, commitment and enthusiasm in the Country Music world are well documented and we are confident that he will enhance the Academy’s ability to bring together fans, artists and the industry,” said Ed Warm, chairman of the board for the ACM. During his tenure as CMO, Whiteside is credited with overseeing the development of ACM’s multimillion-dollar marketing and media campaigns and building strategic partnerships with media partners, digital companies and Fortune 500 brands. 

Schwan’s Co., a food services business, has named Robert Rios chief marketing officer. He will serve as Schwan’s first-ever CMO and be part of the company’s executive leadership committee. “As the food industry continues to rapidly change, we are particularly excited about the role Roberto will play in accelerating our company’s digital transformation, building on the strength of our brands, catching trends and meeting evolving consumer preferences and customer needs,” said CEO Dimitrios Smyrnios. With more than 25 years’ experience in the consumer goods industry, Rios most recently served as the CMO for beverages at PepsiCo’s world headquarters, overseeing the company’s Pepsi, Mountain Dew, Gatorade, 7UP and LifeWater brands. 

PayPal’s former COO Bill Ready is moving to Google at the start of the year as the new head of commerce, reports TechCrunch. Ready will report directly to Google’s SVP of Ads, Commerce and Payments Prabhakar Raghavan and focus on bringing Google’s “vision, strategy and delivery” to its commerce products. “Bill’s exceptional track record building great experiences for consumers and deeply strategic partnerships makes him a powerful addition to our team. I couldn’t be more excited for the future of commerce at Google,” said Raghavan in a statement shared with TechCrunch. Ready was the founder of the tech startup of Braintree which was acquired by PayPal in 2013. He has been part of PayPal’s leadership team since the acquisition.  

JP Morgan’s CMO Kristin Lemkau is transitioning to a new role within the company, serving as the head of the U.S. wealth management division, according to The Drum. The wealth management division is a new business unit launched by JP Morgan, reports the Wall Street Journal, catering to clients with up to $25 million in assets. There has been no official announcement about who will take over the role of CMO for JP Morgan per The Drum’s coverage. Lemkau, who started with JP Morgan within its PR department, was named CMO in 2014. Earlier this year, Ad Club of New York named Lemkau marketer of the year. 


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What We're Reading

We've curated our picks from across the web so you can retire your feed reader

Align People, Process and Technology for Data-Driven Marketing Success in 2020 – CMS Wire

Activism Has Gone Mainstream, And That Has Big Implications For CMOs: Study – Forbes

Instagram influencer marketing activity jumps 48%, study finds – Mobile Marketer

ARF: Different approaches to data cause tension on marketing teams, limiting quality – Marketing Dive

Hulu launches its viewer-friendly ‘binge watch ads’ – TechCrunch

Why jargon is the silent killer of customer experience – User Testing Blog

Facebook delays naming oversight board members until 2020 – Reuters

20 Podcast Predictions for 2020 from Top Industry Leaders – Pacific Content