Transformative Marketing Technologies on the Horizon

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A list of the TOP 10 most transformative technologies for marketing in the next 12 months according to 350 industry leaders, influencers, and experts as surveyed by John Koetsier.

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Artificial Intelligence, Deep learning, machine learning: 37.4%

The winner by a LANDSLIDE!

The common belief is that AI will put big data to work those surveyed highlighted possible shifts in targeting, in understanding the customer journey, and in driving optimal ad-spend decisions.

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Big Data and Personalization: 16.8%

Marketers have a deep and earnest longing to communicate intimately with their customers like best friends, a million or two at a time. Using big data to — among other things — personalize communications — is high on the list. A few are making it happen.

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Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality, and Mixed Reality: 12.2%

AR, VR, and XR or mixed reality are super-exciting to marketers who want to hit the next big thing. Think websites in the 1990s. Nothing says cutting edge like funky goggle helmets and real-time insertion of virtual objects into actual scenes.

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Bots, chatbots, messaging: 10.1%

Communicating with millions individually while taking a coffee break? It’s easy to see why chatbots on messaging platforms are popular. It’s also easy to see some limited success in early adoptions of the technology.

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Mobile, with a focus on geolocation: 10.1%

Mobile was the most interesting thing about just a few years ago. Now, it’s even more important, but much less visible. Why? It’s the setting where all the other interesting things happen.

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Rest of the TOP 10

  • Voice: search, assistants, commerce, user interfaces: 9%

    Amazon’s Echo, Google Home, Apple’s Siri
  • Blockchain, cryptocurrencies: 8.4%

    How we might transact all business in the future.
  • Messaging and brand: 8.4%

    Not all top technologies are technologies.
  • Performance marketing: 8.4%

    ROI, A/B Testing, and Conversion; Data enabled creative decisions.
  • Customer databases and Data Lakes: 6.1%

    Data management platforms for all prospect and customer interaction. Marketing has never had a single system of record but that’s about to change.

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Clearly, A.I. is the big winner.

Because even if executives didn’t pick Artifical Intelligence as the most transformative marketing technology of 2018, they picked a technology that requires artificial intelligence, or benefits greatly from its application.

A.I. + Data = 2018 and beyond marketing success

Credit: Tune.com

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Blockchain, Cryptocurrency, and a Marketable Marketplace

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[dropcap]B[/dropcap]lockchain may not be used widely right now, but we all may be in need of a crash course sooner rather than later. Anyone who calls themselves a marketer should start immersing themselves in educational information about the technology today. Not many people fully understood the massive scope of the internet when the tool took the world by storm and the same will be true of the blockchain. Embracing and adopting new technology will give savvy marketers a head start in the next wave of innovation which waits over the horizon.

Brand storytelling as a whole will launch to a completely new level once the implementation of blockchain technology truly begins. Simply defined blockchain is a digital ledger in which transactions are made. It serves as the intermediary where the validation of any and all transactions can occur. Blockchain essentially serves as a middleman. In finance, for example, the middleman would be the bank; a financial institution’s main function is storing and transferring your money reliably. Imagine no longer needing this physical intermediary for your funds. Look at the cryptocurrency craze which operates on the blockchain and it is not hard to imagine at all. The world of digital advertising is a land of early adopters and it will not take long for them to embrace this new technology landscape. In marketing, it could be said that the central authorities, for example, are Google or Facebook, where they work by ensuring the reliability and dependability of your ‘transactions’, or ad campaigns.

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Brand storytelling as a whole will launch to a completely new level once the implementation of blockchain technology truly begins..

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Marketing and PR departments have operated for decades on the development of communications and messages in the form of branded stories. Whether or not the company delivered on the promises it made was really anybody’s guess as far as the general public was concerned. Engagement on the blockchain as well as ad performance can be verified to ensure optimal frequency on an individual basis with limits set on oversharing. The potential for truth and accuracy is huge. Corporate accountability and social responsibility are areas which will open up to new levels of transparency. Broader issues such as legal practices and sustainability issues can also be verified, which will make marketers more inclined to present facts without any marketing spin. Blockchain equals truth; facts can be checked easily in terms of product and corporate integrity. Creating in essence digitized contracts wherein promises are made public. Also; companies are able to ensure improved data security. A full CSR program could ideally be set up and managed with the blockchain for all to see. Other marketing initiatives could help those interested easily verify that influencers for the company are true influencers meeting the brand’s criteria. In that same vein, it will help verify social media followers and sort out bots from real people.

Marketers should be excited about the potential for the new level of consumer targeting as well. By easily proving that users, along with their click-through data, are real essentially means website owners and those interested in advertising no longer needing a platform to ensure they are maximizing their brands reach.  Many of the companies investing in advertising currently only receive a fraction of the value invested, due to the involvement of the middleman. Blockchain can solve this by creating much better value for ad campaigns. So instead of communicating indirectly with site owners when you want to publish content, you could communicate directly. Information on products, especially in the consumer realm, will be instantly available to consumers who will have access to complete supply chain information as well as the full story about a single product. Personalized digital experiences move from one-to-many marketing tactics to one-to-one connections that seem more intimate and enjoyable for consumers. Relevance and authenticity take the lead in these selling situations and brands can appeal to individual consumers with a level of intimacy unseen up to this point.

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Providing better branding value, ensuring transparency in operations, and possibly the best aspect of this marketing is that the story and personal engagement doesn’t make it seem like marketing at all, just a no-pressure experience between a consumer and a product and brand. People are skeptical of many things, from where their food comes from to the factory conditions of where a product was made. It’s a marketer’s job to build trust with the product to be able to sell it successfully. The quickest way to gaining that trust? Transparency. The truth about products and claims will be easily verified via blockchain technology and marketers will be able to capitalize on that like never before. From a basic starting point, simply having a Bitcoin-friendly payment story in 2018 shows forward-thinking and a company that embraces emerging technology. One that is edgy and innovative; that other brands might want to copy. Ideally, you could create a whole PR strategy around this alone, but hey why stop there!

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