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The Future of Marketing Is...

We've hit a critical juncture in marketing where we are obsessed with talking about the future. The past, it seems, is now squarely behind us. Programmatic is no longer relegated to just remnant inventory. We no longer think of channels separately. We know that automation is a necessary part of marketing’s evolution, and one that can make our jobs more strategic and satisfying.

It’s hard to paint in broad strokes the future of an entire ecosystem. But based on recent developments, it’s safe to say with relative certainty a few things about where marketing is headed. The future of marketing is…


Smart marketers are realizing that the way to find “the right person with the right

message at the right time in the right place” is not by looking at it from a content-driven standpoint. That is, it’s not smart to base where your audience is by just the content you think they want to consume. The better method is to reach your audience where they are. Technology can now help you identify where your most high-value audiences are and target them with the best premium media that increases your win rate.

From a channel perspective, we can increasingly create campaigns that naturally allocate budget where a user you are trying to reach is most engaged or based on activity they took in a previous channel. In this way, you are not sending the same message across channels—you are telling a cohesive story that builds over time and interaction.

Open and Extensible

The tech giants like Google, Facebook and now Amazon are now taking up a larger

share of marketing activity than ever. Consider these stats:

  • Google’s share of search is expected to grow 16 percent to $29 billion this year (eMarketer)

  • Facebook’s share of U.S. display spend will jump 32 percent to $16 billion (eMarketer)

  • 56% of consumers go to Amazon first when shopping—72 percent use the site to find products (Kenshoo)

The reality is that sites like Facebook provide incredible performance. What they don’t provide is the ability for marketers to retain ownership of their own data and insights for use across their other marketing activities. Over time, marketers will realize the disadvantages of this and opt for open platforms that allow them to harness the full power of all of their audiences and also enable them to integrate with other technology to create a custom marketing stack for their needs.

Powered by Both Humans and Machines

Man vs Machine will remain a hot topic into 2018, but the reality is

that digital marketing will continue to require both human expertise and emotional understanding and machine automation and intelligence. The right humans are needed to pull the right levers while the right artificial intelligence-powered technology is required to make the best decisions on which impressions to buy, and increasingly make smarter ones over time. Plus 1 again for humans who are the ones who can explain this all to their clients.

What is the future of marketing to you?

Photo from Creative Commons

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