5 Ways To Stay Ahead Of The Marketing Technology Wave
What digital marketers need to know to thrive in 2015.
The coming 12 months are destined to be a very exciting time for digital marketers.
Regardless of what we market, and to whom, 2015 is surely going to be driven by technology. This is the year that the marketing technologist will emerge as one of the most important members of the marketing team.
Gone are the days when shotgun approaches to anything in marketing will be considered an acceptable strategy. With emerging technology, marketers are going to be held highly accountable for their spend, driving revenue, expanding markets, and most of all, contributing concisely to the bottom-line.
Technology is providing marketers with more diverse and varied opportunities to connect with customers and allowing for increasing levels of personalization and innovation. While these new opportunities can make marketing more complex, using technology to also harness data, measure digital advertising performance, and quantify results will allow marketers to thrive in this dynamic environment.
One of the biggest challenges for digital marketers when it comes to technology is staying ahead of the curve. Like a wave that is threatening to come crashing down, technology can swamp even the best marketers. Here’s what you should watch out for this year.
1. Embrace Tracking
The value of tracking digital ads is apparent to marketers, advertisers, and networks. Campaign performance data gives them insight into where to invest their marketing dollars to get the best results. In 2015, digital publishers will get in on the action, too.
Like their counterparts, publishers will adopt tracking solutions to more accurately monetize their audiences. Publishers invest a lot of time and money to get eyes on their sites and by using technology to analyze consumer habits, they will easily identify the value of traffic and more profitably match buyers and audiences.
2. Harness Big Data
At a time when marketers are being held more accountable, consumer behavior is more difficult than ever to pin down.
In 2015, people will move effortlessly between devices. Effective marketing will have to reach audiences at the right time, with the right message, in the right place. Businesses can only accomplish this if they not only capture data, but also actually find ways to use it.
Data alone can be just indecipherable noise, but actionable, real-time, easy-to-interpret marketing intelligence derived from that data is ultimately what drives faster, smarter decisions.
3. Extract & Share Your Data
Don’t leave all of that gathered big data just sitting there. More than 85 percent of marketers believe “customer data stuck in silos prevents them from running multi-channel campaigns that use data to personalize the experience,” according to a CMO Club study.
Digital marketers invest a lot of money in a wide variety of technologies that help them run digital campaigns. In order for them to track performance across the multi-channel customer journey, though, marketers’ analytics need to be “agnostic” and leverage data that is generated by a host of different technologies, devices, and systems.
Solutions that only look at one piece of the pie will quickly die out. Today’s digital marketers need to effectively allocate spend across multiple channels like mobile, desktop, video, social, and more.
4. Optimize Sooner Rather Than Later
The end goal of all of the tracking we do is to optimize every aspect of our marketing campaigns. The quicker we can optimize a campaign, the more money we can save, the more targeted our messaging can be, and the more effective our campaign can be in driving conversions.
As technology evolves, the best solutions will not only measure actions and conversions while a campaign is running, but also actually optimize campaign planning, execution, and budgeting strategies before campaigns are even launched.
In 2015, we’ll see advanced data visualizations and analytics being used to identify important patterns and trends. This insight will provide the marketing intelligence needed to continually refine and improve campaign strategies and predict the lifetime value of digital customers.
5. Show ROI
Every year, we are not only asked to improve ROI, but to provide an even clearer view into how we determine it. 2015 will be no different.
Figuring out the best way to optimize digital spend and then report the results is critical to the continued success of digital marketers. Capturing eyeballs is no longer going to be enough.
Digital marketers will be expected to contribute to the bottom line in the form of conversions and sales. This will require tracking of every touchpoint along the end-to-end customer journey to understand what is and isn’t working, and why. Marketers who are using the latest tracking technology have the best chance of properly reporting the ROI of their efforts.
In 2015, marketers, advertisers, networks and publishers alike will need to step up their game. With all of the marketing technology tools available, we are increasingly being asked to prove our value.
In the coming year, we will see the utilization of sophisticated marketing technologies that empower users to transform big data into smart marketing intelligence so that they can optimize advertising performance, audience quality, and ongoing campaign strategy in real-time. If we don’t stay ahead of the coming technology wave, we might end up having a pretty bad year.