As Seen In: Adotas
Some insights for the new year from Meir Zohar, the CEO and founder of eXelate:
“The recession will continue . . . and will be good for performance-based businesses: Scary as it will be, the extended overall ad downturn will play to our strengths as online advertisers and publishers. Online advertising is the only advertising vehicle that can deliver the accountability of finite targeting while enabling a true pay for performance model. Imagine a TV advertiser returning a portion of your budget for every viewer that was raiding the fridge at the exact moment your spot is being shown? As tough as 2009 might be, we have to remember the accountability of our offering and the unique opportunity that we have to deliver real performance.
A move from branding towards a direct response model: For years, I have said that online Pay-Per-Action advertising is actually much more closely related to direct marketing than traditional advertising because marketers only pay when the user interacts in a positive way with the offer. Well in 2009, we’re going to see more marketers shifting from fuzzy branding motives to direct response advertising online. Marketers are looking for results, and online publishers and ad exchanges are in the best position to deliver results among the various advertising vehicles. And the driver for generating results will be more effective data.
Data enters the comfort zone: Online publishers will be more comfortable allowing networks to leverage non-PII based targeting data because of the real value it can provide with regard to revenue enhancement and due to the fact that privacy friendly marketplaces will begin to proliferate, making selling data easier. Users have always been willing to trade free content in exchange for advertising – data is now part of that equation. To provide better targeted and more relevant advertising, users will be willing to let publishers use personally unidentifiable data – as long as they have a clear understanding of what is going on. In light of the increased openness on the part of users and the challenges of the world of publishing in 2009, publishers will enter the data comfort zone, which will serve as a catalyst for more data-driven advertising campaigns.
Ad Networks and exchanges will enter the data comfort zone, too: With publishers more open to data monetization, and advertisers driven by performance goals, ad networks and exchanges will follow suit, using more data to better target their campaigns. The acceptance of data as a tradable and monetizable metric is even more significant in 2009 because ad networks and exchanges will increase their share of online ad markets as publishers consolidate more business with ad networks and exchanges in order to monetize more traffic.
Data becomes the new media: If media placement, pricing and delivery has defined the online advertising industry until today, data will become the ‘new media’. Marketers will see for themselves the value delivered by better data, and will begin to target campaigns according to various data points. Targeting data will be bought, sold and traded the same way premium placements on top sites are done today. Targeting data will become as important as the media placement itself – and as valuable to the success of a campaign.
The Government will support the privacy-friendly use of data for the Online Advertising Industry: I’m going to go against the grain and say that while the new administration may not aggressively be proponents of the use of data in online advertising, in the short term, they will not get in its way either. Considering the president elect’s extensive use of online marketing vehicles in his campaign, I suspect the new administration has an understanding of and appreciation for the online advertising industry and how we are revolutionizing the marketing industry (in the same way that his campaign changed the way candidates raise money and market themselves electronically). Furthermore, given the industry’s stated objective of increasing employment, it’s unlikely that the new administration will want to jeopardize the $20 Billion Online Advertising Industry, one of the few growth engines left in our challenging economic times.
And with the government’s support, it will be easier to realize predictions 3, 4 and 5.
So, what do you think of my predictions? I’m interested in hearing your thoughts. Just leave a comment below. I plan to monitor my data-driven predictions during the course of the year and will issue myself a report card at the end of 2009, as well as new predictions for 2010.