Executives from Top Marketing Technology Companies Participated in Our Predictions Series 2018 and Identified the Top Challenges That Marketers Would Face in 2018
In 2018, what would be the best “personality” to define you as a marketer– an angler, a crossbow hunter, a weekend rockstar, or a Zen monk. Well, whatever quality best suits you may not make that much of a difference if you (your marketing campaigns) fail to deliver customer experiences with a context, within set rules of transparency, data privacy, and of course, the next big thing in the B2B– Customer Success.
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We spoke to executives across the globe to identify the top challenges that marketers would face in 2018. The common message was — “It’s time to delight the customers. Dare or risk dropping out of the league.”
GDPR is Coming: Marketers Must Prioritize Transparency
Top business leaders from the data management industry have spoken to us on how GDPR would impact the ecosystem and customer experiences along the buyer’s journey. GDPR is definitely one of the top challenges for marketers in 2018.
Alice Lincoln, Vice President, Data Policy and Governance, MediaMath, said, “With GDPR set to take effect in May 2018, many companies are preparing to adjust their business processes and technology accordingly – especially marketers. In the new year, we’ll see the increased scrutiny of major 1P players’ privacy, security, anti-fraud, brand safety, and election-related practices (Facebook, Google, etc.)”
Alice continued, “This level of scrutiny will also extend to 3P companies, and improved industry standards will emerge to proactively address these concerns. There will also be continued momentum in terms of walled gardens’ evolution to provide marketers with transparency that resembles that of 3P companies. Further, we’ll see ongoing developments in improved industry-wide standards to accommodate emerging technologies, including connected TV and IoT.”
Content Distribution Should Diversify for Better Branding and Trust
Vipul Mistry, Senior Business Development Manager at Intermarkets, said, “In response to all the recent changes from Facebook, publishers are doubling down on channels they can more directly influence such as direct, referral and email. We always recommend publishers have a well-rounded and diverse footprint for distributing content — whether it’s Facebook, Google, Twitter, Apple News, partnerships, email, search or another route.”
Vipul added, “We expect to see a resurgence of pre-social era strategies which emphasize the power of the brand and trust. Publishers creating engaging content and meaningful relationships with their readers will have the greatest success.”
He continued, “It is also possible this update from Facebook could push more publisher content in News Feeds of users who want to get their news and information on Facebook.”
State of Mobile Advertising in 2018: The Battle Between Cost of Business and Ad Fraud Would Intensify
Ran Avrahamy, VP Global Marketing at AppsFlyer, said, “In 2018, marketers will spend more than ever on mobile advertising – big surprise, right? What is staggering is that marketers are accepting ad fraud as a cost of doing business, and are increasing ad spend in spite of fraud.”
The global marketer from AppsFlyer added, “Marketers frequently don’t know what the various types of fraud are or where bad actors are coming from, much less how to stop them. As mobile advertising continues to evolve and become more sophisticated, so too does fraud.”
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Ran added, “Between 2018 and 2020, we will see advertisers and agencies invest more in acquiring the right knowledge, skills, and tools to battle mobile ad fraud, increasing their ability to understand it and minimize its impact so marketers get better performance from their campaigns. 2018 will be full of fresh, exciting opportunities for marketers – especially with the arrival of the iPhone X – and the marketers who are better able to combat mobile ad fraud will have a competitive advantage.”
What is Context in Content; How to Deliver Context!
Rosemary Waldrip, VP Marketing at Music Audience Exchange (MAX), said, “Considering that Google Chrome will implement ad-blocking on February 15, marketers will need to increasingly draw audiences in rather than relying on more traditional advertising techniques. With more and more brands having to rapidly adapt to shifting audience behaviors, the most successful marketers will need to strategically forecast media consumption trends and plan their efforts accordingly.”
Rosemary added to the challenges for marketers, “While there’s not yet a definitive advertising model for the expanding smart speaker market, voice search trends should be top-of-mind for every marketer. Ultimately, as our physical and digital lives grow increasingly intertwined, marketers will win by successfully integrating personalized messages across touchpoints – in other words, content with context.”
Would Customer Success Stories Dry Up in 2018, if Not for Customer Experience and Optimization?
The power of customer experience is no longer a hidden aspect of doing business. In B2B relationships, success would depend heavily on how marketers deliver customer experiences along the buyer journey.
Haresh Gangwani, CEO and co-founder, Bolstra, said, “Even though many of us in the industry (purveyors of Customer Success solutions) may wish for us all to be on the cusp of optimization, we see 2018 as the ‘Year of Adoption’.”
Haresh added, “Enterprise organizations are placing a priority on solving real problems around how they manage their customer relationships. However, we aren’t quite optimizing customer success organizationally. Optimization can only happen AFTER an enterprise (in its entirety) embraces the real value of customer retention and the work required to do this right. While the right technology will help with adoption (and ultimately, with optimization), we see 2018 as the year where the kinks of gaining internal traction are ironed out, and enterprises adopt a Customer Success mindset (and processes) across the organization – from how call centers interact with customers to how account management is defined, to how customer feedback is processed.”
The co-founder of the leading Customer Success Software maker confided, “We are definitely not starting from ground zero. We have tremendous momentum. If we think of 2018 as the Year of Customer Success Adoption, we see real opportunities that will contribute to an actual boost in the subscription economy.”
AI and Machine Learning: the Answer to ‘Most’ Questions that Marketers Have
Elliot Sedegah, Group Product Marketing Manager, Adobe Experience Manager, said, “We’ve been talking about AI and machine learning as a ‘wouldn’t it be nice’ scenario in content marketing for a while now, but 2018 will be the year it becomes a ‘required’ scenario.”
Elliot added, “Consumers are no longer impressed that you’ve personalized your website based on what they’ve clicked on in the past; that’s become an expectation. They now require a holistic, consistent experience as they move from channel to channel and device to device in their journeys with your brand. Machine learning and AI technology can automatically facilitate and assist in many mundane aspects of content creation management and experience delivery, giving marketers and creatives the time they need to be more strategic and creative about delivering the most relevant experiences to customers.”
Do You Have a Dedicated Budget for CX Optimization and AI in 2018?
While AI may still take its “sweet time” to become the ubiquitous technology as an automation powertrain for marketers, it promises to deliver definite benefits if adopted early. Most CMOs are already on the cusp of accepting and promoting AI as a key differentiator in their customer experience initiatives. Now a lot depends on how you have planned your martech budget for 2018 to beat challenges for marketers. Does your strategy for overcoming the challenges for marketers revolve around CX optimization and data transparency? If not, prepare today.
The MarTech RADAR 2018 from MarTech Series revealed the top martech companies that have developed heap-loads of content and marketing campaign to achieve the best CX optimization. Dare or drop, speak to us about your CX optimization strategies!
What does your martech budget look like in 2018? Drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org