Connecting with customers has become both easier and harder. It's now easier in that technology has enabled us to overcome time, space, and cost constraints through digital messaging, but harder due to the proliferation of digital channels (email, text, IM, social) and issues surrounding their use.

As a result, it should be of concern to every CMO that changes in customer behaviors, expectations, and control could put their digital messaging at risk. So, the challenge before us today is compelling: staying connected with customers. How brands respond will define tomorrow's winners and losers.

Digital messaging isn't just becoming multi- or even cross-channel. Its whole pattern and nature is changing. It's becoming about highly individualized, two-way conversations occurring in the moment. And customers aren't just using multiple channels and conveniently staying in the one the conversation was initiated in. Instead, customers are moving fluidly between channels so that an interaction initiated in one (email), may be discussed in a second (chat), and consummated in a third (text). Or not. It all depends on their needs and preferences, and those are ever-changing.