By Jacob Ajwani
From Twitter, Rocket Fuel and Criteo IPOs to record-high online sales for the tech community and ecommerce, 2013 turned out to be a huge year.
So what does 2014 have in store? I posed the question to New York’s burgeoning digital community to get their take on global ecommerce trends, mobile’s continued climb toward domination, and emerging acquisition strategies. Here’s what they had to say.
Ben Plomion, VP Marketing @ Chango
Once upon a time, different groups within a digital marketing team were divided by clear lines. But as programmatic techniques have spread from search to every other corner of the digital marketing world, the lines have blurred. Meanwhile, paid, owned, and earned media are as blurry as ever. Who owns Facebook Exchange—the social media team or the paid media one? And for that matter, what happens when someone likes an ad on Facebook? Is this social lift paid or earned? How about Twitter’s tailored audiences (aka Twitter retargeting)? In 2014, expect to see media buyers taking credit for social lift. And you can bet that social managers will try to take credit for native ads.
Jon Mendez, Founder & CEO @ Yieldbot
Marketer’s worlds are going to change in 2014 because of the abundant versatility and new insights now available in marketing channels. Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, (and our own, Yieldbot), are all bringing the things marketers want: massive scale, first-party data, brand-safe environments, performance pricing, cross-device delivery, and ease of buying. Expect dollars from all ad budgets to start flowing into these channels in 2014 and for marketers to experience success with them.
Evan Schwartz, CEO @ Actionx
With phone and tablet usage displacing desktop/PC, marketers will put a greater emphasis on multi-screen efforts and delivering a relevant, clean, and efficient experience regardless of device. Additionally, marketers will focus on building comprehensive and more accurate profiles of their users, utilizing privacy-friendly data pulled from multiple devices that enable effective engagement efforts across channels. Today’s consumers are always connected; responsive design, user segmentation and targeting, deep linking, and dynamic creative will be a focus for marketers and brands looking to improve the customer experience.
Mitchell Reichgut, CEO @ Jun Group
In 2014, brands will use Facebook differently. Social tools are now ubiquitous and brands will use Facebook more like a traditional media property (i.e., a place to run pre-roll video through native ads) and less as their de facto social platform. In this new model, brands’ owned properties will become primary destinations for their consumers, with sites like Facebook acting as traffic drivers. Red Bull, for instance, had great success with Felix Baumgartner’s space jump.
If all this sounds familiar, it’s the same marketing model brands used in the late-1990s. Back then, the strategy was known as “sticky content.” This time around, brands are armed with the ability to drive significant numbers of people to their sites via social, and to engage them once they’re acquired. This was a crucial element missing in the initial iteration of the model, and it will be interesting to see how it plays out this time around.
Adam Chandler, Head Of Global Programmatic Revenue @ Millennial Media
More than ever before, more open roads are leading to the brands directly. With the explosion of new marketing needs given automation trends, consumer adoption towards “me” media, always accessible mobile devices, plus the many actionable ways to use your customer data, brands are adding new people into the marketing process whose titles don’t have marketing in them. Everything from tech, data, and marketing automation now have a stronger presence at a brands HQ.
Darren Herman, VP of Content Services @ Mozilla
As CES 2014 highlights the innovation around “The Internet of Things,” we are going to begin to see devices become increasingly smarter which takes an entire infrastructure that did not exist previously. If we want devices to be aware of each other, operate independently and dependently, then we need an ecosystem that provides compute power, storage, accessibility, and most importantly, instructions. I believe one of the key areas of innovation in 2014 will be around the creation of instructions, which allow devices to be predictive, context aware, and an asset, rather than a liability.