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Top Trends in Advertising for 2018

Jay Wilder

Marketing’s connection to business growth is unfolding as a major trend in 2018. Shifts in consumer expectations are causing CMO’s to rethink their strategies and adapt to this driving force of change. At the center of the relationship between marketers, customers, and growth is data.  Here are some of the top 2018 advertising trends that marketers should be aware of and keep in mind with their upcoming strategy development.

1) The CGO is the new CMO

  • CMOs are focusing too much on the short-term gains, instead of the key metrics that matter to long term business success.
  • The CGO (“Chief Growth Officer”) can plan for more lasting strategic growth, taking a holistic view of the customers across the stages of acquisition, retention, service and loyalty. [source]
  • 2018 is a “go or grow” year for CMOs with pressure to become more “data-centric, performance-oriented and transformation-focused”. [source]

2) Total Marketing ROI is still reclusive

  • Only 32% of CMOs track ROI and total marketing spend as one of their top-five metrics in decision making. [Gartner DMC]

3) Declining Marketing Budgets

  • According to Gartner CMO Spend Survey 2017-2018, marketing budgets dropped from 12.1% of company revenue in 2016, to 11.3% in 2017. [source]

4) Shifting Media Budgets

  • In 2017, digital ad spending outran television for the first time. [source]
  • Global TV ad spend will still grow to $183B in 2018, but global digital ad spending will accelerate faster to $237B in 2018. [source]
  • Global media spending will continue to increase at more than 5.0% per year through 2022. [source]
  • US consumers are cord-cutting, driving up digital ad spending to $107B in 2018, with OTT services like Roku projected to increase ad revenues by 93%. [source]
  • Consumers are shifting their attention to mobile devices faster than budgets are following, creating a $7B demand and supply gap for advertisers to capitalize on. [source]

5) In-House Programmatic

  • More brands are putting targets on percentage of media spend going into programmatic – but in-housing isn’t one size fits all. Brands are choosing to leverage agencies, adopting hybrid models of technology ownership and agency trading, and full in-housing of the programmatic tech stack, trading, and analytics.
  • The Association of National Advertisers (ANA) says that more than 35% of brands have expanded their in-house programmatic media buying as marketing demands more transparency. [source]
  • Adobe predicts that 62% of brands will bring media in-house by 2022, and another 38% claim they will move “some” in-house in the next 5 years. [source]

6) Transparency

  • Marketers are still keenly focused on gaining transparency and ownership over 3rd and 1st party data.
  • In an IAS survey, 68% of respondents said they already transact on viewability and another 25% said they wanted to transact on viewability. [source]
  • Platforms are stepping in to help alleviate brand safety concerns. Google /YouTube, removed 8 million videos in Q4 2017—81% flagged by algorithms.

7) Speed

  • Marketing analysts spend a majority of their time (80%) battling with data preparation, rather than analyzing it. [source]
  • McKinsey estimates that companies could be wasting as much as 70% of their efforts on data-cleansing. [source]
  • Unless you are actively able to turn your data into insight, it will be difficult for your company to stay on top of the change.

8) Growth

  • According to studies, 52% of brands and 56% of agencies believe programmatic advertising is going to outrun TV advertising as a top priority for their strategy in the upcoming years. [source]
  • Many marketers claim that online audiences are more important to brands’ KPIs that broadcast media.
  • Greater efficiency and effective use of data allows you to tie spend to growth.

9) Customer Data and Privacy Concerns

  • With consumers jumping from platform to platform, being able to consistently connect with your customers is becoming a greater challenge.
  • Personalized ad campaigns driven by data will lead digital marketing in 2018. [source]
  • 55% of consumers say they have decided to not buy something online due to privacy concerns. [source]
  • The General Data Protection Regulation is increasing privacy regulations on access to user-level data.

10) Artificial Intelligence

  • “The speed of data coming into the organization has now increased to the extent that it is no longer possible for human analysts to process it all.” – David Sanderson, CEO, Nugit. [source]
  • Marketing Analytics with layered over AI allows analysts find real-time patterns in customer data, extract recommendations for optimizing performance, and allow marketers to access complicated analytics without prior coding knowledge.

11) Intelligent Voices

  • While technology was once the bridge between brands and customers, the new rise of intelligent voices, such as Alexa and Siri, are now intervening and controlling business’ access to consumers.
    Almost 60% of people use ‘smart voices’ to accomplish tasks that they normally would have done on their smartphones. Even 49% of surveyed Millennials say they were now looking at their phone less and using voice assistant services instead. [source]

12) Personalization

  • 70% of B2B companies say it is absolutely critical for companies to provide a personalized experience. [source]
  • 66% of people say they are likely to switch brands if they feel like a person rather than a number. [source]
  • Netflix is responsible for 37% of streaming traffic in North America, mainly as a result of their eCommerce personalization. [source]

13) eCommerce

  • 49% of product searches now begin on Amazon. [source]
  • Amazon owns 28% share of the US eCommerce market. [source]
  • 55% of respondents said they have purchased a product online after a social media discovery. [source]

The common thread?  Continued change and evolution.  That’s why marketing intelligence platforms are built for agility.  See how centralized measurement and optimization across all your channels can help you stay ahead.

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