Let’s start off with a mind-blowing fact: did you know that more than $500 billion a year is spent on advertising worldwide? While that is a big number, the job is not so easy itself. Being able to deliver the right ad to the right people at the right time does not sound so easy, right? Moreover, innovation in advertising technology reduces old tactics and opens new opportunities: new ways of reaching your audience. So we can say that digital advertising opens new doors for companies to target their consumers.
You probably already know that digital adverting refers to marketing media that is digitally displayed. Digital advertising technology exists on the Internet, on smart phones, hand-held media devices, on automobiles and billboards. And the main questions in digital advertising are: Where will people listen? What content will they engage with? How to reach them? Well, for finding the answers to these questions we need to understand the four trends that are reshaping the industry.
You know that chatbots are an exciting prospect. However, brands need to be smart here: they need to provide relevant and useful information if they want to use this channel successfully. Think about it: if they don’t show real value, there are so many other messaging touch points. And there are some examples of companies using chatbots. Let’s take Nordstrom: it launched its first chatbot on Facebook Messenger, at the beginning of 2017, and the Kik messaging service. These have the mission of helping shoppers find the exact products they are looking for.
Moreover, more and more enterprise companies are using chatbots to connect with customers. They also get to the opportunity of creating more personalized, relevant ad experiences. And let’s end the final thought about chatbots with a little statistic. According to a survey by Oracle, 80% of sales and marketing leaders are using chatbots today or will be using them by 2020. So, it is your turn to think as marketers.
#2 Ad blocking
One of the trends of digital advertising that will reshape the industry is the ad blocking: it will stabilize as publishers catch up. As you know marketers were thrown back on their heads by ad blockers. And it had a good reason. A survey from Informa Group predicted something incredible. If publishers fail to fight ad blocking they will lose $35 billion by 2020. Furthermore, ad blocking is most commonly used by online news consumers under the age of 35, according to the 2016 Reuters Digital News report. Apparently, this is a demographic that is expected to grow in the near future. One can say that the wheel was in consumer’s hands. And therefore, publishers have struggled to respond.
Moving on, there is this thought, that most people who want an ad blocker already have one. So if they have not installed one yet, they are less likely to in the future. And publishers found smart techniques to fight ad blocking. For example, they are forcing consumers to pay for content or they are whitelisting websites. And at the same time, they are risking being denied.
#3 The martech industry
As you know, the marketing technology sector is growing enormously. In the past few years, there were only 350 martech companies. In the beginning of 2017, there were over 3,500 companies. Interestingly, it is thought that the number will start to shrink next year because of consolidation across both ad tech and marketing tech.
Google, Facebook and Verizon/AOL, the advertising giants, are already looking to or are acquiring startups as they build out their marketing engines. Disney, Netflix, Viacom and Time, the content providers, are looking for technologies that will help get the highest ROI from their content. At the same time, advertising agencies and consulting firms want to invest more in marketing technologies. It will help build their businesses and keep clients in a world where media buying will continue to shrink as a margin generating business for them.
#4 Digital video audiences
Cisco predicts that video will make up 82% of all consumer Internet traffic by 2020. So to say that video is on the rise is an understatement. Now, when marketers first started using video they wanted quantity: as many eyeballs as possible. And at that time, the number of views mattered more than tracking conversions. But video channels proliferate. That means brands need to get better at measuring success: focusing on quality.
In the near future, it is thought that marketers will be more strategic about their target audiences. So the goal won’t be getting 50 million views. Instead, they will be fine with hundreds of thousands of consumers who will actually want to buy their product. And it is a win-win: consumers will get more relevant ads and marketers will get improved conversion rates.
The bottom line is that the ones who will look out for shifts in behaviors and listen to what their customers want will be the successful companies. And they will do it through new channels like Facebook Messenger. Don’t forget that finding the right audience is vital. And in the end, it’s important to remember that while the technology is crucially important, it’s people who are steering the ship.