How Digital Advertising Companies Are Evolving

Ours is multi-layered digital world. It takes more than mere algorithms to triumph here – it requires performance. So how is performance measured in a digitally saturated industry? While many choose to measure their success with impressions and clicks – I say a conversion is the preponderate. After all, why advertise if it doesn’t give you returns? Our simple maxim: If a brand wins a client, that’s revenue for the client and revenue for us. It is this thought that has enthused us to build products that are true blue performance engines. In an industry which changes sails to the whims of the winds, tech companies need to embrace innovation. Apart from all the goals that our clients define for their campaigns, performance is what defines and differentiates competition.

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Digital advertising started off as simply shooting mails to bulk mailing lists, trying to get as many people to see your content as possible. Today the industry has evolved to more sophisticated and advanced processes, which are less about the impressions and more about conversions. Rather than throwing out ads at anyone and everyone, the ads are displayed to those who would actually be interested in it. This also helped change the customers’ impressions about advertisements being a hindrance.

The key aspects of digital advertising are that they are accurately measurable, customizable and actionable. Traditional advertisement formats like TV don’t give you a picture of the customers’ response to better optimize your next ad to perform better. Digital ads come with the implicit caveat that it needs to have a defined metric that tells a marketer how a consumer reacts to an ad. Companies have to be on top of the data analytics pyramid to analyse ad performance and customer browsing behaviour to deliver guaranteed value to a Chief Marketing Officer (CMO.)

Most advertisers looking for digital advertising services have one question – “How do we know who the high-value users are and how do we optimize our ad spends to target these consumers?” To address this question, companies realise that ROI hinges around improved targeting in digital advertising. To improve targeting, companies employ complex algorithms to glean what their customers browse and respond to. They need to understand what makes customers tick. Once they know that, delivering the right ad is just that much easier.

Reading Consumer Behaviour – Data Is The Kingmaker Customers are not that simple to understand. Consumer behaviour is a whole massive field found at the intersection of psychology, economics and marketing. Digital advertising has taken the lead in understanding this behaviour. Up until now, companies focussed on online browsing behaviour, but now have shifted their interest to offline as well. Customers exhibit a lot more behaviour offline than they do online. For example, an average customer interacts with the company online only when making the purchase. But receiving the product and experiencing it usually occurs offline.

Analytics tools today are able to crunch massive amounts of data and offer insights like never before. What do customers like? What do they dislike? Which soap is bought more by men in a particular demography during the summer season? Do sales of aerated drinks spike on Fridays? Data analytics has answers to all these questions and more. With massive amounts of data, companies can gain deep insights into customers and the patterns they follow. But that’s not enough. The online world is only a small portion of a consumers’ decision-making. Marketers have to go one step ahead and on-board offline data as well, from customer care centres, delivery personnel, point-of-sale etc… Making sense of offline behaviour is the golden goose of customer profiling.

The internet advertising industry is vastly dynamic, with several players entering the field every day. The industry revenue itself exceeded $135 billion last year (as per a 2014 report by PwC) and is being torn apart by several players vying for market share. The PWC report also states that the figure is expected to grow to $239 billion by 2019. The ever faster penetration of the internet will no doubt be a major contributor to this. The vast number of people who will be online then will require much more potent performance marketing techniques.

Companies that have robust data engines that can make sense of offline and online behaviour are more likely to thrive. So why shouldn’t advertising companies deliver smart insights into their client’s customer behaviour? This sort of packaged solution would entice the clients, as well as simplify the process of delivering ads, making companies far more responsive to changes in audience trends. After all, in a hyper-connected world, the very least a marketer expects is to reach out to their niche target audience.

Originally posted on Business World

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