As part of a series of predictions for 2014, industry thought leaders share their thoughts on the big advertising and digital trends for the year ahead.
Nick Reid, managing director, TubeMogul
It’s often said that digital is the most measurable medium, but it can also be the most over-measured. From my point of view there are some key questions to consider when it comes to measurement in 2014: audience verification is an important factor, how are we measuring and tracking delivery to our target audience when it comes to buying digital video?Using partners like Nielsen’s Online Campaign Ratings (OCR) to guarantee audience delivery will be key for digital video growth and generating brand interest and trust in programmatic in the coming year. Reach is another important factor when targeting specific audiences. Advertisers need to be considering when and where does digital video deliver the kind of reach that TV activity can’t? Generating ‘incremental reach’ is still a key marketing activity for brands whose focus has been on TV for 20 years or more. Then how do we assess when online video becomes more effective than TV? Last but not least, viewability and transparency will be the topics to look out for in 2014. As the measurement and tracking of video viewability (understanding when video ads really are watched by human eyes) becomes more important, companies like ours look to create a more robust and accountable video inventory ecosystem. For too long there has been a lack of transparency about where ads have been delivered, their player size and if anyone has actually seen them – 2014 will see transparency and viewability being measured and tracked through programmatic buying platforms.
Wolf Allisat, global CRO, TagMan
In 2014, we will see technology beat media hype, hands down, in terms of marketers getting to grips with the data at their disposal and the analytics tools best placed to sift through the data mountain. Marketers are becoming data experts in their own right, and the management, visualisation and analysis of customer data being firmly moved into their court in the coming year. In the past, we’ve only touched the tip of the iceberg when it comes to data analysis. Marketers will need to continue to focus on becoming more agile, willing to learn how customer insights – both first and third party – can revolutionise their marketing ROI, and adjust their decision-making according to what effective data visualisation (and broader technology) can reveal. With the growth of e-commerce, there’s been lots of hype around the latest and greatest digital tools available to marketers that promise to change their world. Where previously everyone was eager to believe the hype and invest quickly to boost sales and gain momentum, 2014 will be the year where technology will overtake media hype. With more competition and more blurred lines when it comes to differentiated offerings and solutions, plus tighter budgets and resources available to marketers, 2014 will be the year of what technology not only offers, but also delivers. Solution providers will be held more accountable for the value they’re actually adding to businesses.
Pierre Naggar, managing director, Europe, Turn
- The marketing industry will accelerate its shift to the new data-driven, programmatic world order in 2014. Brands are realising the full potential that real-time customer centric information has to underpin strategy, content creation and campaign development. Next year, marketers will demand more comprehensive, one-stop solutions to meet the needs of this data-driven approach, rather than juggling a complex range of vendors offering siloed solutions.
- Further to our recent research, brands average a 300 per cent improvement in ROI when moving to a multichannel approach. Turn anticipates an even greater shift to multichannel campaigns in 2014 as advertisers apply an 'audience first' strategy and become more adept at responding to the dynamic nature of consumer behaviour, particularly in mobile. Any brand not employing a cross-channel strategy will fall at the first hurdle.
- As the industry becomes more accustomed to programmatic, Turn expects to see more branding campaigns run through automated buying platforms. With premium publishers such as the Guardian, the Telegraph and eBay fully engaged and 'programmatic direct' growing fast, this opening up of more inventory plus an increased comfort level with programmatic, will lead to increasingly more sophisticated, tailor-made campaigns, proving that programmatic can reap benefits beyond direct-response campaigns.
Nick Timon, chief strategy officer, Adjust Your Set
Up until now online video for brands has broadly fallen into two categories. The first being re-purposed TV ads not made for the digital medium. The second being snackable video created either to support customer service through “how to” style videos, or content designed to dramatise product in support of ecommerce. Both sets of content are largely published either into YouTube or on owned media video hubs. However, as we move into 2014 we expect that the importance of online video within the marketing mix will evolve significantly. To me, there are five trends that will accelerate online video growth in 2014:
- Video will gradually be commissioned centrally to drive economies of scale and consistency of consumer experience.
- Video will increasingly be seen as the medium that drives “the idea” rather than the thing that simply supports a TV ad.
- Distribution will move beyond YouTube or video hubs, and will be contextualised throughout the customer journey as well as within mobile devices and real time bidding.
- Curation and sharing is now as important as broadcast in ensuring reach. To proliferate, the message will need to become more customer-centric – or it simply won’t get heard.
- As brands move to become always-on publishers, video will become a core component of the new marketing philosophy.
As brands radically alter the way they communicate in order to cope with a digital-first world, online video will become an increasingly important tool to support this shift.
Clive Baker, managing director, Movement London
OTT (Over The Top) messaging solutions like Snapchat, WhatsApp and Line have begun to take a bite out of those massive SMS figures, even luring teenage audiences away from Facebook. But as yet there is no easy in-road for mobile marketers to use them. In 2014, expect lots of experimentation and trials from marketers trying to infiltrate these more closed communities. But they’ll have to do so in a way that adds value to both brand and app, creating engagement and excitement – such as, for example, Snapchat offering teaser images of new fashionwear. The issue is that doing this could easily alienate users, too. The platforms want to monetise as they grow, but at the same time brands can’t be too disruptive to the models and communities the platforms have spent so much time and energy creating. I think we’ll see the OTT apps slowly opening themselves up next year, as long as brands go with the flow and don’t try to change how the apps currently operate. If too much marketing material spams users or it becomes too overt, they’ll simply close that app and go elsewhere.You can read more 2014 predictions from the marketing, advertising, digital and media industries here, here and here.
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