What Does Acxiom Do?

by Sarah Campbell  on Monday, Apr. 17, 2017 12:00 am  

CEO Scott Howe and several longtime employees explained what Acxiom Corp. of Conway does for its clients. The company:

  • Collects data on individuals. This consists of publicly available information, information from surveys and data from other providers.
  • Processes and provides meaningful data to clients on consumers they want to reach, by connecting systems and data on each individual from several sources, both online and offline. That data helps companies market more effectively, reduces fraud and identity theft and helps people find businesses or other people through directory services.
  • Gives third-party companies the data-based infrastructure they need to launch targeted advertising/marketing campaigns.
  • Acts as an extension of some clients’ marketing staffs to conduct campaigns for clients based on the processed data.
  • Helps clients reach consumers in the way or ways in which those consumers want to be reached.

Michael Hannon, vice president of delivery, leads the company’s Citibank team and has been with Acxiom for 19 years.

He said Acxiom tells its clients that the online shopper they’re seeing is the same person the credit bureau has identified by physical address as having a good rating and possessing a card.

A lot of people he speaks with joke that Acxiom is helping advertisers pester them, Hannon said. His comeback is that the firm filters out the noise to market to consumers things they’re actually interested in .

Andrew White, a 15-year Acxiom veteran and team leader in engineering, said the Audience Cloud he works with places the data and tools clients need into a clean interface they can use to find a relevant audience for their products or services.

Barry Zelner, a 25-year employee who serves as vice president of sales and client management, said he tells people that some Acxiom product probably helped them choose their credit card from a top-tier issuer and helped that bank find them. The firm’s data was likely used to set their interest rate and credit limit, he said.

Abhishek Bhardwaj, principal solution architect, has been with Acxiom for 13 years. He said it recognizes consumers that transact with its clients in several ways.

Senior Marketer Sherry Hamilton said the firm does all its work with privacy in mind. “We help our clients ensure that everything we’re doing for them is done in a privacy-safe way. That’s a huge value proposition and differentiates Acxiom in the marketplace.”

The employees said changing technology has greatly affected Acxiom.

“Two decades ago, the world was a simple place,” Howe said. “There was direct mail, TV, and there was print media if you were a brand who wanted to reach your audience. Today, the world is far different.”

There are thousands of websites, email, cellphones and social media. “All of this lends a complexity that’s almost overwhelming,” he said. “Each one of those touch points generates a tremendous amount of data, and the marketers’ challenge is to connect those touch points and create simplicity out of all of that complexity. As a result, the solutions Acxiom had 30 years ago had to be re-architected so they’d be relevant in today’s world.”

(Related: Acxiom Returning to Conway Roots)

 

 

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