Are Industry Corrections Reducing the Impact of Ad Blocking?

As consumers continue to view many online ads as annoying and intrusive, ad blocking is expected to remain a thorn in marketers’ sides through 2017.

This year, some 86.6 million Americans are slated to use ad blockers at least monthly, a 24 percent jump over 2016, Emarketer reports. But another recent report argues such growth has mostly plateaued and will stop growing completely by 2025, remaining in use by only 7 percent of the online population. Others predict ad blocking will ebb in the U.S. this year, in a pattern following slight reductions in Germany, England and Canada in 2016. Read more

Will 2017 Show Great Promise for Fintech?

Last year was disruptive for FinTech? That seems a bit of an understatement now, but who knows whether 2017 will see even greater innovation.

“Without a doubt, 2016 was the year ‘disruption’ became tangible,” writes David Horton on AmericanBanker.com. “Events like Brexit and the U.S. election brought home the reality we are living in a fast-changing global society where a sense of anti-establishment and rebellion is accelerating change. This shows no sign of stopping in 2017.”

Some directions savvy FinTechs are expected to take this year: Read more

Trends that will Shape Loyalty Marketing in 2017

Loyalty is a hot commodity this year.

The loyalty marketing programs that employ incentives and other forms of engagement to help businesses retain customers have become popular. In fact, 57 percent of U.S. brands are increasing their spending on such budgets, and 28 percent of U.S. customers name such campaigns as powerful influences in choosing brands.

The market is projected to grow exponentially from $1.68 billion in 2016 to $4.59 billion by 2021.

“Rising need for competitive differentiation among organizations to increase their market shares is the major driver,” reports researcher Markets and Markets.

“Frequent shifts in consumer demographics, increasing focus of loyalty programs on customer segmentations, significant rise in the use of mobile technologies and increase in the number of cardholders are other factors.”

 

Read more

Shift and Opportunities in FinTech

FinTechs will innovate and evolve further this year as they continue to compete with traditional banks and/or negotiate for trade in the world’s $25 trillion financial services market.

Global venture investment in FinTech grew by 11 percent to $17.4 billion last year, and many analysts expect another healthy run in 2017.

“The great collaboration between FinTechs and financial institutions is set to continue into 2017,” predicts Lawrence Wintermeyer in Forbes. “Institutions and corporate venture capital funds may give venture investors a run for their money in the spirit of ‘coopetition’ that is FinTech.” Read more

Shift in Consumer Behavior Calls for Better Technology

Back in the day, customer experience (CX) was mostly about using good manners and trying to reduce friction in the sales process.

These days optimal customer experience is more of a science, and the technology companies that can help other businesses harness that power are coming out ahead. Today’s tools can make the management of customer relationships and processes much more measurable and strategic thanks to analytics that reduce workload and the huge breadth of available data reflecting customer preferences, characteristics and past behavior. Read more

17 Mobile Marketing Trends to Help Adtech Companies Stay in the Game

It’s already huge, but mobile marketing is expected to become even more prolific and sophisticated in the next few years as its value is further optimized.

U.S. mobile ad spend is slated to reach $40 billion this year and $65 billion by 2020, says BIA/Kelsey. In fact, on-the-go consumers this year are expected to view by mobile 75 percent of all the online content they absorb, according to media buying agency Zenith.

“The technological underpinnings of the industry are advancing by leaps and bounds, demanding that marketers learn more, learn faster and reach farther for campaign strategy, tactics and results,” writes Julie Bernard in AdAge. Read more

Cross-Device Tracking: Could New Guidelines from the FTC Create a Hurdle for Businesses?

Now that cross-device tracking has become a commonplace tool for better personalization in marketing, the Federal Trade Commission is keeping a closer eye on the practice via several “recommendations” released in January.

Marketers are reaping the strategic (and ultimately financial) benefits of connecting, measuring and analyzing customer activity across smartphones, tablets, desktop computers and other devices enabled through the IoT. In fact, by 2015 only 18 percent of U.S. firms were still using a single customer view for most of their marketing. And that’s paying off: Google notes U.S. retailers achieve 16 percent more search ad conversions when including cross-device data, while travel companies achieve 14 percent lift and vendors of consumer packaged goods 11 percent. Read more

9 Ways HealthTech will advance in 2017

The North American health IT market continues to ramp up to the $104 billion it’s expected to reach by 2020, and that’s largely driven by the healthcare providers trying to solve regulatory requirements, rising costs and the push toward better patient outcomes.

This year, analysts predict the following advancements as the healthcare world keeps driving toward those goals.  

  • Continued focus on security and compliance following last year’s additional HIPAA audits and governmental guidelines on HIPAA and cloud computing. Health services remained the target of 39 percent of all cybersecurity breaches last year. As one solution, more healthcare data is expected to be moved to the cloud.  
  • More solutions via analytics and informatics, or better storage and optimization of big data for actionable insights related to cost control, malpractice claims, lab testing and overall quality of care.

Read more

Dollars for Your Data: Paying Customers to Share

With the IoT blazing full speed, some consumers are becoming increasingly guarded about voluntarily sharing their personal info with businesses.

In response, companies that recognize the value of such data are starting to provide incentives like credits, discounts and coupons to consumers who provide it.

Initial  research indicates consumers may be amenable. In a global consumer study in 2016, for example, 54 percent of all respondents (and 63 percent of millennials) said they might provide companies data from their smart home in exchange for money.

“Such strategies challenge the dominant model of data collection without any monetary benefit,” writes Cassandra Liem on Bruegel.org. “(They) clearly illustrate data can be considered — even from a consumer’s point of view — as a currency for their online activities and transactions.” Read more

Success and Failure: Brands Bringing Programmatic In-House

In an attempt to take more control of their programmatic buying, many brands are making investments toward bringing such functions in house.

In fact, plans to that effect were reported by 68 percent of brand advertisers in an AOL study last year. But other sources say the AdTech world is quickly realizing in-house programmatic is difficult to execute, and unlikely to be a widespread trend.

“What started as a trickle has yet to turn into a flood — and most likely won’t anytime soon,” wrote Yuyu Chen in  Digiday.com. “If brands want to execute programmatic media plan on their own they need to gather tremendous amounts of data, hire experienced staff and put considerable work into setting up a campaign. For many brands, this is a bridge too far.”

Still, some agencies (especially those with their own programming technology and products) are responding by enhancing their proprietary programmatic capabilities in order to retain clients. Read more