Earlier this month, the Association of National Advertisers (ANA) held its annual Media Leadership Conference. After three days of brand stories, insightful case studies and important industry updates, here are some tips to take what was shared and turn it into action to fuel your marketing plans in 2018.
Tip #1: Create a real-time, data-driven culture.
Data is a culture and a mindset. Artificial Intelligence (AI) and real-time bidding will continue to transform the way marketers plan and strategize. However, in order for AI to truly work, it will require people with analytical and curious minds to mine, interpret and take action on insights. Make 2018 the year that you develop a curriculum for your organization that promotes learning in the major digital analytics tools. Set aside time once a month to learn about technologies disrupting marketing and media. Test and learn new technologies, scale and repeat again.
Tip #2: Practice the art of precision allocation.
Data is enabling marketers to buy audiences with precision, eliminating waste and improving overall marketing return on investment. Data can be applied so that even the most “mass” media channels are becoming more personalized and one-to-one. Nothing is a “must-buy.” With data informing media channel selection to target behavior, context, psychographics and demographics, you can have precision plus scale.
Tip #3: Use social influencer marketing to amplify paid media efforts.
Brands that can unlock organic and authentic brand advocates will not only make their marketing more effective, they will also be able to improve overall marketing ROI as less will need to be spent on paid. Identify your top 5 percent heavily engaged brand advocates and turn them into your most powerful marketing asset.
Tip #4: Bring creative and media strategic planning back together.
Channels continue to fragment and evolve. Gone are the days of creating a single source of creative and “adapting” that creative to fit the space of the media channel. Creative and media are inextricably linked as one informs the other; they can no longer be created in separate silos. "Wear the hat" of your intended target customers and how they uniquely experience your brand: across screens, devices, interfaces and platforms.
Make it your goal to adopt and be successful at all of the above, and next year you could be on stage presenting your best practices and case studies!