As the advertising industry continues to develop and change, so too does the customer’s path to purchase. The evolution of today’s advertising technology has resulted in more and more choice for consumers. However, the increase in choice and the depleting attention span of some consumers, has resulted in the emergence of a plethora of undecided consumers. So how do marketing and advertising professionals simplify this process and make the transition to purchase as seamless as possible in the digital era?
The accelerated customer decision journey
“Consumers are moving outside the marketing funnel by changing the way they research and buy products. Traditional marketing remains important, but the change in the way consumers make decisions means that marketers must move aggressively beyond purely push-style communication and learn to influence consumer-driven touch points.” (McKinsey Quarterly).
The emergence of the digital age has resulted in a new type of consumer; one that will research brands and is faced with a multitude of choices and communications. With the extreme number of influences affecting consumers’ decisions, the path to purchase has become iterative. This continuous pendulum may result in the drop off of many customers in the marketing funnel. To prevent drop-offs, advertisers need to provide information at hyper-speed to targeted audiences that will trigger immediate action by the consumer.
A full-funnel strategy can help identify drop-offs, but it needs full funnel attribution as well. IP-based only solutions are not able to provide a holistic view of the customer journey – they may be useful to track the conversions at home, but not everywhere the user goes.
Frequency Control & Impact
A major challenge that faces advertisers today is overexposure of the consumer to a number of ads. This is where frequency control at the user level becomes extremely important, as to not over message and waste budgets. One challenge with frequency is having multiple disparate data sets. For example, if an advertiser uses different platforms for marketing, each platform may have a different view of the consumer.
Another challenge with frequency is latency in data matching which causes an “activation gap”. Most advertisers who use a separate DSP and DMP face an activation gap, as the purchase decisions are very quick and only take a matter of moments. Both of these challenges can cause issues with frequency management including overexposure (wasted budget), or underexposure (missed opportunities). A single unified platform would bridge this activation gap, so that data can be used in real time, and that frequency can be managed seamlessly.
By monitoring which frequency and media types resonate the most with each customer segment, marketers can gain a better understanding of the consumer decision journey. Below is an example of how brands and agencies can discover optimal frequency through the dataxu platform:
The importance of data
Ultimately, the success of the advertising industry depends on data. In this world of big data, creativity and personalisation can be the key to customer loyalty. Of course, there’s no instant recipe to success, but a test and learn approach can help drive more informed marketing decisions.