It used to be that one of your primary means of competing as a brand was raising the spend and buying more impressions than your competitors — and doing it creatively, in order to stir up more laughter and tears than the other guy. Your budget and creative wherewithal were your arsenal. We carried that approach over from traditional marketing.
Even fairly recently, a marketer or agency might tell you that the top focus of the media lead was to build and optimize the right plan for achieving desired reach. “Reach” was the mandate. The audience piece was somewhat left to happy accident, as we based our buy on publisher reported audience stats and then leaned on context to deliver our target audiences. If you took even a little bit of time and were diligent about your initial media research, focusing on placing your media well was a good move. Relying somewhat on intuition, of course, you were endeavoring to reach your audience in context, through a string of educated guesses, and this was an approach that just might pay off.
Gradually, both brand and performance marketers began to focus more on engagement and maximizing that. This focus has stuck. It’s the way we collectively operate. Making sure that targeting, placement, message and creative all conspire to spur a productive interaction has become the normal obsession — and automation has allowed us to take this to a level that’s almost like sport for marketers.
Within digital, as audience-based approaches and programmatic have become the industry standard, mobile has made strides to dive into this opportunity. Now that the data science has matured for mobile and we are no beholden to the cookie, we can explore a greater scope of audience opportunity. Mobile can be a driver and even a lead within the mix, and we can engage in much more competitive tactics.
Greater capacity for personalization leads us to certain precision tactics that more and more marketers are starting to use on mobile. In 2014, we will see more marketers executing assertive approaches such as constructing campaigns to target, drive and optimize foot-traffic from mobile impressions. We may even see brand conquesting, or using personalization and localization to infiltrate a competitor’s terrain.
There are a few companies leading the charge, supporting marketers and their agencies in this sort of work. A brand might place signage near a competitor’s location, serve a coupon after a competitive purchase, or steadily message about competitive products, in context. But, it is now possible — thanks to advancements in personalization and localization tech and geo-conquesting capabilities — to literally cross into a competitor’s territory and capture the attention of their consumers. More marketers will confidently work across platforms and across competitor lines to experience the potential ROI of these powerful methods, now that so much more is possible.
Media moves and matures and passes new milestones constantly. New options suggest that there is more stepping up to do — that if you don’t explore the new reaches of technology, your competitors will. We saw this with advancements in search, programmatic display, premium video, and now mobile. It’s a great time for the love of the game, all across the board.
Opinions expressed in the article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Marketing Land.