Data—Shaping the Future of Marketing

Data—Shaping the Future of Marketing

As we wind down the first quarter of 2015, the discussion around data continues to grow in volume and especially in 2015, productizing data becomes more and more significant in marketing. The importance of turning data into actionable insights for marketers is also undeniable. According to AdWeek, WPP’s media agency Mindshare launched The Loop in 2013. With the help of this real-time marketing hub, marketers can glean insights relevant to their client partners by processing over 100 data streams.

No matter in which industry, collecting data and turning it into insights is of the same importance. For example, one of the world’s largest mall operators—Westfield is trying hard to keep the pace of cultural and technological changes and to deal with the data. They are exploring services that incorporate both physical and digital worlds to further learn and engage customers. Virtually, they are testing not only WiFi and beacons, but also 4G technology, Bluetooth as well as social platforms like Snapchat to glean customers data.

In taking all these high-tech measures, mall operators are gaining access to a mass of data which offer insights on mall-goers shopping habits. At the meantime, they utilize those data to enhance their advertising and traffic monitoring process. Free WiFi, for example, is good way to collect customers’ basic information like email address, age, ZIP code or even shopping preference upon log-in. If not, search histories complementarily provide a snapshot of shopping habits and preference. In addition, free WiFi also helps mall owners collect consumers’ behavioral information, such as how frequently they visit or which area they visit most. It is also an effective way to monitor traffic.

But there are limitations of applying WiFi because of the difficulty to distinguishing between visitors and mall employees who use the network without shopping. Privacy is another major issue. According to Ms. Kaminkow: “Privacy is of utmost importance. We’re getting the data … but we’re still in the early days of being able to get true value from that.” Under this circumstance, third-parties like StepsAway are bridging the gap by turning the data into useful actionable insights and helping retailers act on the information collected. Mall owners and national retailers like Express and Sephora make use of the WiFi network to offer deals. Users open their browsers to get organized by categories such as women’s, men’s and kids or by store and more alluring thing is to gain promotions. Besides, mall apps incorporate other tools like interactive maps, giving step-by-step directions which designed to particularly encourage the download.

Data gathering is only one part of the equation and another great challenge and opportunity is mall owners and retailers’ ability to seamlessly share those data. If operators know a guest who purchased something for in-store pickup when entering the mall, they can guide them to the nearest parking spot and remind retailer to prepare the item. If the visitor is a loyal customer, he/she can be greeted by a personal shopper. Even though mall operators are just beginning to negotiate with retailers on sharing data, once that gateway is opened, there will be more likely to engage with retailers and shoppers at a deeper level.

Related links:

Coke-cola’s Commercial on Super Bowl Game

Coke-cola’s Commercial on Super Bowl Game

You must enjoy the Big Game night on Feb. 1 and may or may not notice the 30 seconds TV commercials. But you must be surprised about the price of this 30 seconds airtime on Super Bowl Game—4.5 million dollars. Since the price is at such a high level,all companies must try their best to promote the brand convey the message and increase awareness and preference.

Among all the commercials on the Big Game, I like the Coke-cola‘s even it isn’t the 5 best ads on Super bowl according to ADWEEK’s rank. Firstly I like this ad’s content and storytelling. When I see the commercial, I don’t see spam, I see the message—Let’s make it happy. We talk a lot about brand narratives and the importance of storytelling to content marketing, but that doesn’t necessarily mean telling the story of the brand itself. It means weaving the brand cleverly and effectively into a narrative that people genuinely care about in everyday life.

As a matter of fact, this piece of ad is all about your daily life. I mentioned above the core message of the commercial is “the world is what we make it and let’s make it happy”. The aggressive and unfriendly comments on social media, the violent news or videos air on YouTube and negative information on billboard usually happen in daily life. As a viewer, I was definitely moved by the moment when everything sad become better and every upset person get happy. The result is a resonance that drills the brand into a deep level of our psyche that’s rarely visited by other commercial content.

I like the ad also for its emotional effects. As reviews posted under the video ad, a question was constantly came up with like is it possible to spill coke on your computer and make such a great change to the internet and to the world and may criticize this kind of unpractical commercial. But as for me, I think Coke-cola put more emphasis on emotional things. As a carbonated beverage, it is really difficult to make the commercial realistic or underscore the functions. Consequently, it is entirely reasonable to create such a sweet moment by depicting a dramatic scene.

Why do people go to the cinema? They go to laugh, to cry, to get sad, angry and experience emotion that lies in between these broad categories. In short, any piece of content marketing needs to be fit for purpose—if it’s an informative piece of video, it needs to inform; if it’s an analysis piece on a blog, it needs to analyze; and if it’s a piece of TV commercial like Coke-cola, it needs to impress audience or to arouse viewers’ emotion (unnecessary to be completely positive emotion). And to this end, with an emotive storyline that explores the meaning of happiness and demonstrates how a tiny change influences people’s mood, the Coke-cola commercial goes into audience’s heart.

The Coke-cola commercial has a very clear idea of who it’s talking to and in this commercial, it bids to increase its standing among internet users. And the ad created a great contrast making the story dramatic and impressive. At the beginning, everything seems unhopeful and full of hate, but a small change completely converted the situation. It actually reminds me the butterfly effects—“the sensitive dependence on initial conditions in which a small change in one state of a deterministic nonlinear system can result in large differences in a later state”. In this commercial, it is the spill of a bottle of coke-cola that makes the internet convey happiness and this trick truly impressed audience and make the brand more powerful.

Related links