Machine learning is generating a lot of chatter lately, making myriad marketers scramble to figure out to use it. Despite all the excitement surrounding machine learning, however, marketers still struggle with how to view it, what to expect from it, and how best to use this new technology.

Moreover, the digital marketing landscape has changed dramatically, largely due to rapid advancements in technology:

• CRM systems have added a digital history to customers and consumers.

• Web analytics and tracking have added granular data that can be analyzed in near real time to provide insights across Web and mobile channels.

• BI has added elements of quick and robust reporting to the marketing teams.

• Search engines and ad placement have added a new channel for reaching and understanding customers.

• Action systems (such as content optimization) have allowed for personalizing content.

• Detailed data collection and data mining have allowed for more precise segmentation.

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Joe Davis is CEO of Webtrends, a provider of Web analytics products, services, and solutions.

LinkedIn: Joe Davis

Twitter: @joedavis44