5營銷中斷,第3部分:垂直競爭(2018年更新)

5營銷中斷,第3部分:垂直競爭(2018年更新)

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5 Disruptions to Marketing, Part 3: Vertical Competition (2018 Update)

This is part 3 of a five-part series, providing an update on the 5 Disruptions to Marketing as we head into 2018. If you have not yet read Part” microservices apis update>, you might want to start there.

3. VERTICAL COMPETITION (2018 Update)

Vertical Competition in Martech

I have been writing about Facebook, Amazon, or Verizon as “martech” competitors to Oracle and Salesforce — but in the big picture of vertical competition, they are.

China Mobile Internet Daily Hours

For a large scale example of vertical competition dynamics in digital channels, look at Alibaba%E2%80%99s” uni marketing suite> or

The most common example is the Google’s search advertising prices and policies, what are you going to do? Move your search spend to Bing? (Sorry, Microsoft — I love you.)

Same with Facebook and Instagram. Snap and Pinterest might be competitors, but they’re not really substitutes.

This is why, Google and Facebook have each been able to hold on to their dominance. Third-party adtech vendors aren’t able to be of much help, as they don’t have a lot of weight against Facebook or Google to force their way into those walled gardens.

Google and Facebook Tracking Websites

And the strength of Facebook and Google reach beyond their walled gardens. They’ve been highly successful at having independent websites install their “tracking” scripts — whether it’s for Google Analytics or Facebook Connect.

The latest FacebookGoogle digital ad duopoly is only one example of vertical competition.

Ad Blockers as Vertical Competition

In the battle for digital advertising, ad blockers are another kind of vertical competitor that have Google and Facebook) can be diminished by these client-side players.

In fact, it’s at the client stage — the touchpoint used by the consumer and how it is connected to the Internet — that the biggest struggles in vertical competition are emerging.

Web browsers were relatively weak vertical competitors because they were effectively commoditized. But now, we have an explosion of new proprietary devices and apps that have more power as exclusive touchpoints to select audiences.

Amazon Alexa is a great example of a proprietary client. It’s estimated that there are Amazon Alexa Skills

This creates powerful Amazon” acquired whole foods>, you could argue (or, well, actually I argued) that this network of physical stores becomes another proprietary touchpoint between brands and marketers.

Amazon as an Ecommerce Marketing & Sales Platform

What makes Amazon such a formidable vertical competitor in the martech space, however, is that they have much more than these exclusive client interfaces.

They also have a” growing advertising platform> that is starting to rival Facebook and Google.

Their greatest strength as a martech/adtech player is their unique channels and touchpoints and the exclusive data they have on all the buyers on Amazon.com.

Now, while popular and proprietary client interfaces can have a lot of power in a vertical competition chain, they don’t necessarily have all the power. The power accrues to the vendors that are marketers or consumers — the two end-points of that chain — are reluctant to, unwilling to, or simply unable to substitute.

For an example of this, consider the feud between two of these giants, where Google products in their store — Nest Secure, Chromecast, Google Cast — so Google now prevents a number of Amazon devices from being able to access YouTube. (hat tip to

Google is setting a disappointing precedent by selectively blocking customer access to an open website. – Amazon spokesperson

But it’s not just the giants that are playing with vertical competition. Earlier this month, Zeta Global — a growing marketing cloud provider that competes with the likes of Adobe and Oracle — Facebook” comments> lets Facebook “own” an exclusive touchpoint on any blog that adopts it for their commenting system — nice for the blogger to have comments only from identified Facebook users, but also very nice for Facebook to have access to all the data of those interactions — Disqus gives Zeta proprietary reach to consumers and their data beyond its back-office martech software.

Net Neutrality & Vertical Competition

But arguably the biggest news in vertical competition at the end of 2017, at least here in the US, was ” digital advertising and adtech>, but also the” great firewall of china>, the Accenture” report on digital fragmentation> warns that the growth of national digital barriers is making the digital environment increasingly complex and risky for businesses.

Global Barriers to Digital Transformation

Between the power of the Internet giants, an explosion of proprietary touchpoints, and the rather disjointed and unpredictable rules of digital engagement being enacted by different governments around the world, “digital strategy” is going to be harder ahead.

But where there’s a threat, there’s also an opportunity. Stay tuned for Part 4: Digital Everything (2018 Update), where we’ll consider the upside of all these blossoming new varieties of client interfaces.