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The Future of Performance Marketing

Performance marketing is a creative and effective way to diversify your audience and expand your reach while capturing valuable data. And the benefits don’t stop there. When you embrace the full functionality of performance marketing, from native and affiliate advertising to sponsored social media content, you’ll find it's easier than ever to grow your business.

More importantly, the success rate of performance marketing campaigns is generally higher since all campaigns are highly targeted, and marketers make data-backed decisions and optimise their campaigns based on the results.

The rise of new digital channels created a raft of specialist skills required to deliver campaigns via different platforms; it has become increasingly important to have the right experts to drive your performance marketing campaigns.

However, as technology increasingly automates these skills (for example, Facebook have significantly reduced the targeting and optimisation options in their ad platform, with more decisions being made by algorithms), the skills required of marketers to implement campaigns will shift to those activities that are harder to automate.

Skills such as setting strategic objectives, creativity and integrated channel planning will be far more sought after in the years. So solving the challenge of full multi-touchpoint attribution will be top of mind for many marketers in the years to come. Indeed, the need to align to both short- and long-term metrics could lead to ad platforms not only measuring the impact of advertising on our actions (did I view/click/purchase?) but also on our thoughts (did it make me happy/sad/excited?) – if and when the technology, and appropriate regulation, allows them to.

That kind of analytical performance mindset will permeate the entire marketing funnel. In recent years, we’ve seen that social platforms are increasingly developing solutions to serve big brand marketing budgets. At Vision Activated, our experts have the ‘performance mindset’ that keeps up with all updates, trends and the continuous learning required in this dynamic field.

The future of performance marketing would look something like this:

Driven by cross-channel insights

Today, most performance marketing reports are generated within the platform they are executed. But this limits marketers to a siloed view of their customer’s journey. Consumers don’t navigate the internet on Facebook alone, nor do they only look at the titles of articles in Google search. They weave seamlessly between social platforms, search engines, and relevant articles to answer their questions.

There are essential lessons performance marketers learn by referencing cross-channel data, such as:

  • Understanding how Facebook campaigns influence Google search behaviour

  • Referencing search data to inspire display ad messages

  • Identifying what channel’s efforts should be increased by analysing the net impact of marketing campaigns

Performance Marketing in Display Will Popularize

Marketers like to think of display advertising as an awareness-stage channel, so most marketers today essentially pay for impressions (as opposed to clicks, leads, or conversions). But marketers quickly understand that more targeted approaches to display can dramatically increase CTRs.

Contextual targeting is on the rise, with 87% of marketers planning to increase the scale of contextual targeting this year. This signals a shift in the mindset of display advertisers, as they realize that suitable ad placements can create higher click-through rates than audience targeting alone.

Search Marketing Will Become A Conversation

Increased depth of search analytics will allow marketers to tailor search campaigns to more sophisticated search behaviour and start advertising more dynamically. Marketers see which search terms drive visitors to their site on the first, second, and subsequent visits and a variety of more dynamic insights. With more valuable search insights, the search will continue to become more of a conversation channel than a content channel - as marketers answer more specific questions asked on Google.

Leveraging holistic attribution models

Marketing analytics have evolved to quantify better the value of marketing touchpoints than last-touch attribution allows. With last-touch attribution, all conversion credit is given to the marketing interaction that immediately brought consumers to buy. But the reality is that consumers don’t buy after one well-placed ad. They see your brand across various channels and over a more extended time than last-touch attribution gives credit to. Seeing this customer journey comprehensively dramatically increases performance compared to the more siloed approach of yesterday’s performance marketers.

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