The digital ad industry is now living in the future we’ve been warned about for years — or one facet of that future, at least. We’re effectively living in a post-third-party-cookie world. But it’s not the end for retail marketing.
As third-party cookies are phased out, brands will have to stay nimble to weather the transition successfully. It’s a good idea to shift focus to contextual marketing and build up first-party data now. Keep an eye on better alternatives like Unified ID 2.0, and watch how agencies are adapting. That way, you’ll be ready when the cookie crumbles.
Cookies and blocklists put brands on the back foot. Brand suitability draws on perception and customization to make sure that surrounding content makes sense for the brand’s image and customer base. And, when you combine this with context-informed targeting and human intelligence, brand suitability is the more powerful approach to engage with today’s consumers and customers in a way that also helps to future-proof today’s savvy brands.
According to a new commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting among marketing leaders in the US, most brands (>75%) are already interested in cannabis consumer data to better understand and reach new and existing customers.
They recognize that sustainable, long-term growth requires keeping pace with their customers’ interests, like cannabis, as they evolve over time. They also see the value of this massive audience that possesses ideal attributes for campaign activation up and down the funnel.
Businesses seeking to better reach their target audiences need the most accurate and up-to-date consumer data to inform their marketing strategies and meet their business goals. In fact, data-driven insights can literally make the difference between a hit or a miss when it comes to truly understanding audiences. But, as the sheer volume of collected data grows, the variety of collection methods, visualization formats, and management systems needed to organize and analyze this data can prove confusing and challenging.
As most companies pull data from several internal and external sources — which can be time-consuming and tedious — the need for a simplified organization methodology is incredibly important.
Enter data integration.
The mobile advertising world continues to shift dynamically as both public and private sector influences reshape ad targeting and data collection practices. The phasing out of third-party cookies and increased privacy regulations, coupled now with the financial pressure related to Covid-19, make 2020 an especially challenging year for marketing tech.
At the center of all of this is Semcasting, whose CEO and founder Ray Kingman is the latest guest on Street Fight’s Heard on the Street podcast (listen above). Semcasting applies advanced IP targeting known as Smart Zones to validate audiences and make sure that marketers are reaching the right people.
This past summer, the IAB Tech Lab launched a much-needed transparency initiative in the form of its Data Transparency Standard, establishing baseline statistics on the objective attributes of a given data segment, such as refresh cadence, ID types, and segmentation criteria. The Data Label should be a big relief to data buyers, including agencies and advertisers, that are trying to wrap their heads around audiences, but it’s still only the starting point when it comes to assessing digital audiences.
For as much as the Data Label injects transparency into audience construction, it only addresses objective attributes, and not the qualitative aspects of the data segment. To get the most value out of their data investments, advertisers and agencies need to go further and develop their own standards for evaluating data, especially when it comes to quality.
For years, geo-contextual advertising focused on targeting consumers for specific products or services at specific locations. The strategy has delivered impressive results for many brands and agencies. But with privacy restrictions on the rise, the time has come to start reimagining geo-contextual advertising in a way that brings brands together with on-the-go consumers in a privacy-safe way.
While many vendors are looking at how to expand into privacy-safe geo-targeting, Freckle and AdSquare are getting out ahead of the pack. Just this morning, Freckle and AdSquare announced a collaborative effort to improve geo-targeting capabilities for brands and agencies across North America. Through the collaboration, Freckle will layer its privacy-safe visitation data into AdSquare’s platform.
Video as a medium continues to gain prevalence given better bandwidth, mobile connectivity, and cultural factors. Creation and distribution tools also continue to democratize “pro-sumer” video like TikTok. But at the professional end of the scale, quality production is still expensive and hard to find.
This is the segment of the video market that Stringr addresses. The company has created a sort of networked marketplace to connect supply and demand for video creation. That includes everything from a library of locally relevant B-roll footage for news stories to specific on-demand assignments.
Two media consumption trends stick out from the last decade. The first is that video continues to gain prevalence given better bandwidth, mobile connectivity and cultural factors. The second is that our attention is increasingly fragmented between screens and delivery platforms, such as streaming apps.
Tremor Video has positioned itself at the center of that two-way intersection. The company provides a video creation and distribution engine to maximize impact for brand marketers, according to Devin Fallon, VP of Media Insights & Analytics, and the latest guest on our Heard on the Street podcast.
Not even one month has passed since the implementation of California’s newest data privacy regulations, and some winners and losers are already beginning to emerge. As companies across the country work to comply with this new state law, fundamental shifts are happening and some brands are going back to an older style of data collection and usage.
How this retreat is viewed depends on who you’re talking to. Industry veterans like Dawn Colossi, chief marketing officer at FocusVision, see the return to more traditional forms of data collection as a good thing. Others in the industry have a different view on what returning to older forms of data collection will ultimately mean for technology and marketing firms.
Some widely used marketing methods, like firmographics and psychographics, are coming to a halt as brands are forced to consider whether consumers actually want to receive their messages. In place of those practices, marketers are returning to older forms of data collection to once again create differentiated customer experiences, explains Dawn Colossi, chief marketing officer at the market research technology company FocusVision.
“I think with digital transformation came the notion that brand marketing didn’t matter as much because you could just target your audience,” says Colossi. “But with limitations on targeting and spamming, getting your brand known for things that customers care about—and this comes from understanding how they think and feel—will be crucial for marketers.”
One elusive component of effective marketing is knowing what consumers are thinking. But even with advances in AI, traditional ad targeting practices often commit basic errors like showing people the same ad several times … even though they may not be interested in any way in the product in question.
This is the area where Viral Gains is innovating. The latest guest on Street Fight’s Heard on the Street podcast, Viral Gains CEO Tod Loofbourrow tells us how his longstanding affinity for robotics and AI has influenced his path to solving this problem by better inferring intent and consumer sentiment.
As networks, publishers, and agencies continue to shift to guarantee business outcomes in ad deals (a trend that began earlier in 2019), the concept of “incrementality” will emerge as a key issue for marketers in 2020.
Advertisers today have an incredibly difficult time distinguishing between those exposed to ads who were already going to visit the store (the natural effect, driven by intent and brand identity) vs. those who visited because of that exposure (the incremental effect, driven by ad sensitivity). Quite understandably, we want to know if our advertising campaigns actually work in changing consumer behavior in our favor.
For luxury brands, creating customer relationships, and the revenues they bring, is everything. A $25,000 watch or $150,000 vehicle is rarely an impulse buy but instead a purchase achieved after many different points of engagement.
Programmatic advertising is taking an increasingly higher percentage of all ad budgets, and luxury brands and their marketing efforts need to hop on board with this trend. Digital advertising has the power to use contextual targeting and select first-party data to find the right audiences at the right times and in the right places, no matter how high-echelon the product.
While brick-and-mortar sales remain a robust part of the holiday shopping experience, online shopping is asserting clearer dominance than ever before this year. A walloping 95% of consumers plan to do the majority of their holiday shopping this season online, according to multi-channel engagement platform Leanplum.
Your social advertising strategy and audiences may need a bit of an overhaul to align with updates to Facebook’s “Safe & Civil” Advertising Policies, especially if they fall within particular categories.
If your customer is running a campaign that does fall within one of the three categories upended by recent Facebook policy changes, it’s best to launch your campaign with a Special Ads Category applied prior to publishing. This will save you time and a headache resolving errors during the length of your campaign.
People everywhere receive “personalized” emails daily from brands greeting them by their first names. For a long time, brands have assumed this conveys genuine care for each customer. It’s certainly not the case anymore. Technology has evolved, and consumer expectations have risen to such a level that marketers must do much more. It’s no longer about saying, “We know you,” but rather, “We understand you.” To do this requires a major shift from personalization to individualization.
It may sound relatively straightforward, but what this shift entails and how companies can incorporate individualization in their everyday communications presents a whole new set of challenges.
Facebook finally rolled out the ‘Clear History’ feature, now known as the ‘Off-Facebook Activity Tool.’ This tool will show users a summary of the apps and websites that have shared their user data with Facebook and gives users the opportunity to control what information, if any, is shared with these websites. According to Facebook, the company “won’t know which websites you visited or what you did there, and won’t use any of the data you disconnect to target ads to you on Facebook, Instagram, or Messenger.”
As advertisers, it’s important for us to understand how to prepare for the impact and to keep these updates top of mind as we move further into the second half of the year.
How do Facebook’s problems affect the rest of us? Good question. At Clever Real Estate, our effectiveness as a real estate technology company depends on our ability to connect with customers online, so we surveyed 1,139 Americans about their feelings regarding online advertising and the internet at large. Some of our findings might surprise you.