The below is an extract from #7for17 – seven views on the future of marketing. Click here to download the full paper.
We live in a connected and exciting world. For marketers the next few years will prove to be an incredibly exhilarating period as data continues to join up modern technology to enable the delivery of better experiences and more seamless interactions.
For everyone else (we are all customers remember) it should see an increase in the level of service and relevancy of the communications we receive as brands focus on the concept of ‘people-based marketing’ to create 1-2-1 interactions.
People-based marketing is what’s required because it’s what’s expected: treating customers as individuals and concentrating on adding value. To keep up with this ever increasing customer expectation an evolution of not only the technology we use but the way we use data is required.
Over the past few years we have seen more and more emphasis put on real time decisions as more and more technology comes to the market that can help deliver lightning quick interactions. What hasn’t evolved at the same pace is the way we use data. This is going to change. The way marketers use data, the way suppliers sell data and the way the advertising ecosystem operates is due for a shake-up.
Currently most brands build audience segments from a variety of data sources and then deploy them across channels. These can be across a range of channels and with a variety of sophistication in regards to how performance and insights are fed back into future decisioning. However, those audiences are still built using data purchased as a separate action. What happens if you encounter someone who would be a perfect fit who doesn’t fit the specifics of the audience you built?
Or, more likely, what if in the advertising ecosystem you encounter someone you know nothing about but who would be the absolute perfect fit? How many great opportunities are you missing? Likewise, how many people are not getting the messages most relevant and useful to them?
The solution is to shift the way data is used. Data at the point of interaction is the future and one we will see rapidly develop in the next few years. This is data that is right there at the point of the interaction, powering decisions there and then rather than before those audience segments are deployed.
It may seem like a huge leap but the techniques and technology is around now – bid enrichment and the opening up of data will make this change happen.
The benefits are immense: better and more consistent experiences and a consistently more relevant experience for more consumers. It helps marketers move much closer to true people-based marketing in every channel.
These trends will be further exacerbated by the continued adoption of Data Management Platforms (DMPs) and the benefits they will start and continue to drive for businesses. What will make the difference though is how business use DMPs, not whether they invest or not.
With many DMP providers continuing to push SaaS systems with limited support it is the brands which integrate their investment with a carefully thought out strategy and the use of expertise – whether that’s internal or external – who will be successful.
The next 12 months are due to be a challenging yet exciting time for marketers. The technology is there for us to start doing what we’ve been preaching for so long – putting the customer at the heart of everything – as we strive for true and authentic people-based marketing capability.
It’s happening at just about the right time: the pressures of new regulation and ever increasing customer expectation means it’s almost now or never.
This article is an extract from #7for17 – seven views on the future of marketing. Click here to download the full paper.