A Few Marketing Predictions Surrounding the Future of Streaming, Analytics and Measurement!

Analytics & Measurement:

2020 was a year of upheaval. What started with massive fires burning in Australia, to the global pandemic the world had not seen the likes of since 1916 and ended with a contentious election. But the development of an effective vaccine in record time offered hope. The thought was that 2021 would regress to the mean and we would start back on the path to normality. Unfortunately, that has not been the case. Covid is raging into its 4th wave around the globe, the economy has sputtered forward in fits and starts, inflation is becoming part of the parlance and lack of goods on the shelves is causing frustration for vendors and consumers alike. Coupled with an increasingly fragmented media world and consumer base more skeptical of how their data is being used, marketers should expect the rate of change to continue to accelerate. These all have downstream marketing impacts and will shape consumers’ relationships with brands and their advertising. With this as a backdrop, OptiMine offers the following prognostications for what the world may hold in 2022.

Covid and its ancillary impacts are not going anywhere:

  1. A COVID outbreak will disrupt the Super Bowl and a food fight will ensue between broadcasters, advertisers and the NFL about who will be stuck footing the bill.
  2. China’s Zero Covid policy will play havoc with the Winter Olympics. It will cause multiple athletes to drop out due to strict policing. This will disproportionately affect American athletes, causing a large number to skip the Olympics which will in turn drive down ratings for NBC. Late-moving brands that step into the remnant inventory may score some great TV buys.
  3. As logistics continue to be an issue for most physical goods companies, they’ll cut back on advertising for low-availability products. The void will be filled by more experience-based industries as they continue to bounce back with increased vaccination rates- unless of course, Omicron spurs a 5th wave around the globe.
  4. Rising CPMs colliding with supply chain and inventory issues will force marketing teams- and their finance partners- to become more precise than ever with measurements of the total cross-channel impacts of marketing investments. Huge penalties await marketing teams that mis-value marketing. Wall Street’s winners will be those brands that nail the advertising/ inventory stock efficiency ratio.

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As people become more aware of how companies are using their data, they also are becoming more aware of their rights and how they take that control back with broad impacts on advertising and measurement:

  1. Consumer privacy will continue to disrupt the marketing landscape as Apple continues to pressure other marketing & technology players. Google’s own FLoC initiative will struggle with marketing attribution and will only provide broad measures of performance for very large cohorts leaving smaller advertisers and campaigns in the lurch.
  2. Consumers will also awaken to how they are being tracked and monitored by their Smart TVs and this will be the next major wave of the consumer data privacy backlash. State-by-state privacy regulations will be updated to protect consumers from their spying TVs. And either a TV manufacturer or an OTT/ streaming device company will take Apple’s lead and create a “private” TV streaming device.
  3. Facebook- pressed by Apple’s privacy changes- will have to admit (again) that their own attribution measures over-stated the value of Facebook ads. Faced with several dozen of these admissions over the last few years, brands will finally wake up and get their own independent marketing measurement and stop relying on the walled gardens to tell them the value of their advertising on the walled gardens.
  4. Consumer behaviors will continue to shift significantly creating more measurement and marketing challenges for brands. Old predictive models and approaches will no longer provide accurate guidance as marketers scramble to fill the measurement void created by privacy changes.
  5. Everything that’s old is new again: in the wake of these privacy and measurement changes, things like contextual advertising and marketing mix modeling will make a major comeback- like acid wash jeans, crochet and clogs.

As streaming services proliferate, people walk away from traditional cable, mass reach and the measurement it provided will continue to wither leading to new challengers stepping into the fray:

  1. The industry will not adopt a new industry-wide TV measurement scheme. Many new TV measurement coalitions and company-specific schemes will sprout like mushrooms to feed on the fallen tree that is Nielsen.
  2. 2022 will see an explosion of first-party data-driven retail advertising networks as brands seek better ways to reach shoppers and retailers find ways to build mini-walled gardens of their own.
  3. As media continues to fragment, Advertiser will look to video games to connect with their consumers. The shift in advertising dollars will lead to a bigger push around accountability and proving the dollars invested in the medium are driving a return.
  4. Live sports will remain the last bastion of reach. This will make inventory scarce and drive up CPMs. This in turn will push companies to start signing longer term deals with the leagues to ensure they will have access to inventory
  5. With the streaming wars’ victors becoming more apparent (Netflix & Disney), brands are going to start infiltrating content to reach their consumers. This will create new opportunities for measurement.

Regardless of whether these predictions prove to be true or not, one truth will endure: marketers are facing an increasing level of complexity on all fronts of the “4 P’s” and the most successful will harness agility to adapt, survive and thrive.

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