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Data-Driven Marketing Trends: What Do Marketers Need to Know

  • Jed Mole

    Jed Mole

Created at July 19th, 2018

Data-Driven Marketing Trends: What Do Marketers Need to Know

How can organisations win the attention, recognition and trust of the audiences that matter today?

In an increasingly competitive marketplace, achieving success is hard; it’s increasingly difficult for businesses of any size to stand out from the noise. However, those who develop a thorough understanding of customers through data – and put that insight to use – have the best chance of long-term marketing success.

Of course, the marketing landscape is always evolving; and data-driven marketers must evolve with it. Informed by our experience in supporting thousands of clients and partners, below, we’ve identified a number of trends that marketing leaders should be aware of to shape strategies for success.

Data-Driven Marketing Trends

Data is More Accessible than Ever Before

The way data is bought, sold, and shared is changing. Every company can now be considered a data company; collecting the necessary information to deliver better customer experiences. Indeed, as the number of devices, sensors, and consumer apps continues to explode, the data footprint for the average consumer is also growing exponentially.

First-party data has always been the most powerful and predictive for brands, and many companies are now establishing partnerships to combine and maximise their unique data assets. The number of data suppliers is also growing, as more companies establish formal programs for monetising their data assets. Equally, the supply of global data is improving, making it easier to execute campaigns across multiple geographies at scale.

Ultimately, this means that more data is accessible and available (and in line with privacy and compliance regulations) than ever before. This growth has also been enhanced by identity resolution; which enables disparate data sets to be combined and delivered efficiently to hundreds of platforms in a privacy-compliant way.

People-Based Marketing is Revolutionising Strategy

Recent evolutions in strategies such as people-based marketing – which enables targeting and measurement at the level of real individuals across offline and digital channels – are causing marketers to re-evaluate central elements in their marketing mix.

For example, with people-based search, brands are now able to optimise keyword bidding based on purchase history and other factors, which can result in increased click-through rates in search, and improve return on ad spend.

Marketers are also using people-based targeting strategies in other channels to generate double-digit increases in sales lift and efficiency. Digital marketers are finding that suppression, cross-publisher frequency capping, and cross-device targeting are easy places to show quick results.

As people-based marketing enables siloed digital and traditional teams to use the same data, multichannel campaigns are also seeing incremental advantages and greater alignment. In the coming year, it’s likely that companies will increasingly take advantage of this evolution and reorganise their teams by audience or customer lifecycle (i.e. acquisition vs loyalty) rather than running separate programs by channel.

Programmatic is Growing

Facebook and Google are continuing to absorb over 75% of incremental digital media spend. Yet as these channels mature, ROI is decreasing for marketers; Facebook reported that prices had increased by 35% over the previous year in their Q3 2017 earnings call.

Looking to differentiate their brands and drive higher ROI, marketers are taking advantage of a growing number of alternatives in the market that offer custom-audience options for people-based advertising. Platforms such as Amazon, Snap, Pandora, Spotify, Pinterest, and LinkedIn are popular alternatives. Higher match rates are also driving greater use of data onboarding into “torso and tail” publishers across the programmatic open web.

Brands that diversify their media strategy are discovering they can achieve comparable reach, save on media costs, and enhance ROI as a result of better access to exposure data for cross-channel campaign optimisation. All this means that marketers will continue to find ways to duplicate reach outside the walled gardens.

Data-Driven Marketing for the Future

People-based marketing is currently transforming marketing playbooks and becoming a crucial customer experience play. As marketers continue to recognise the importance of overcoming data silos, we can expect marketing leaders to tailor their strategies around their own data assets, expand into new markets with global data buys, and make multi-channel execution a standard practice.

This, in turn, will shape organisational structure, create diversified media spend, and lead to more frequent data analysis at the individual level. As a result, we can anticipate a continued shift in the mindset of marketing leaders, as well as in marketing practice.

Download the 7 trends to data-driven marketing
To learn more, and the additional factors affecting data-driven marketers today, read our ‘Top 7 Trends for the Data-Driven Marketer’ guide here.