2018 has been a fairly tumultuous year for marketers. The enactment of the GDPR led to a flurry of tedious ‘Hey, we’d love to stay in touch’ emails, CRM databases were hastily cleansed, and the Cambridge Analytica scandal put marketers’ practices firmly under the microscope.
But it wasn’t all bad. Spring cleaning marketing lists led to better segmentation, increased open rates and engagement, and we learned that the majority of consumers will share personal data and preference insights in exchange for product recommendations and better personalization.
2019 promises to be just as chaotic, but for marketers open to new ideas and committed to delivering a better customer experience it will be an exciting 12 months. Here’s my digital marketing predictions for the year ahead.
1. The Rise Of The Zero-Party Data Economy
The distrust following the Cambridge Analytica scandal, coupled with consumers becoming more au fait with their rights under the nascent GDPR legislation has helped usher in a new age of privacy.
If 2018 was the year that marketers were forced to wean themselves off third-party data sets, 2019 will be the year they shift to zero-party data.
For the unaware, zero-party data is a type of data intentionally shared by the consumer and never inferred. Things like purchase intentions and preferences to improve personalization and help build up a picture of who they are. Empowering marketers to build direct relationships with consumers, and in turn, better personalize their marketing efforts, services, offers and product recommendations with no guesswork.
Business Analysts Forrester envisage this shift, predicting marketers will address consumer demands for privacy and personalization head-on, creating opportunities across the ecosystem by turning to zero-party data.
“Say goodbye to third-party data and hello to zero-party data. Data that customers own and willingly provide to brands.”
2. True Personalization
Like Christmas and turkey, New Year’s and fireworks, this wouldn’t be a marketing predictions blog without personalization making an appearance. But while the results of personalization strategies are routinely scrutinized, the quality of the data that shaped them seldom is.
This is because traditional personalization strategies have been derived from looking at previous behavior, evaluating click-stream paths, search terms, purchase history and other indicators to try and ‘second guess’ the intentions of the buyer.
However, by using the right mechanics, and offering a value exchange, consumers will tell marketers what products they desire, what they look for in a service, and what offers motivate them to purchase.
Whether it be by market forces or design, 2019 will see marketers truly empowered to stop using guesswork, and arm them with the information they need to deliver true personalization and make the right connections with consumers.
52% of consumers would share personal data in exchange for product recommendations
3. Marketers Will Augment Their DXPs To Deliver Short-Lived Interactive Experiences
The traditional web content management industry has been disrupted by the evolution of DXPs which furnish marketers with the tools to build impactful, personalized experiences that go beyond web and support true omni-channel engagement.
But to truly unlock the power of DXPs marketers need design flexibility, rapid time to value and marketing destinations that are creative, interactive and inspiring. More often than not, these requirements are in direct conflict with how web content management systems have been architected and built in the past.
That’s why leading DXP vendors like Adobe and Sitecore are partnering with Wayin to help marketers conquer 2019 by rapidly creating short-lived interactive marketing experiences that can be published to every digital channel – not just the website.
4. Shift In The Ad Ecosystem: Live Experiences In-Ad Units
Digital display advertising has been on the decline from around the time the Millennium Bug threatened to break the internet. But like garish christmas jumpers, it’s about to enjoy a renaissance.
The issue was that digital advertising perpetuated the lack of real interaction a brand has with consumers. Confusing exciting and innovative, with flashier, louder and being better at chasing users from site-to-site.
But by incorporating live experiences into even the smallest ad placements, digital display advertising will become exciting and relevant again in 2019. Interactive experiences that can be seamlessly incorporated into ad units that grab the consumer’s attention, engage, and collect zero-party data on behalf of the advertiser. Combing the reach of traditional ad targeting with interactive digital experiences and data capture mechanics.
14x higher CTR for Wayin-powered ad unit publishing
5. Social Stories Overtake The Newsfeed
It’s easy to see why social stories have quickly resonated with modern consumers. They’re interactive, authentic and encourage direct engagement over passive consumption. And when it comes to social stories advertising, consumers have been optimistically receptive, with data showing huge increases in click-throughs, ad recall and purchasing intent. But consumers don’t just want to see new products and brand messaging – they want promotions.
While consumers aren’t baulking at the notion of ads appearing within social stories, with current call-to-action pages taking over 5 seconds to load, it won’t be long until they start dismissing ads and taking their eyeballs elsewhere.
2019 will see brands match consumer expectations by building social stories experiences that are mobile-first, not merely mobile responsive. Instant loading call-to-action pages that deliver not only a stunning user experience for the consumer, but yield increased conversions and collect data on behalf of the advertiser.
50% of internet users want to see social stories from brands that include promotions
Forrester 2019 B2C Predictions
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