Digital advertising budgets are growing every year. In fact, Magna Global reported digital ad spending is expected to grow 13.5% in 2016, and will overtake TV as the largest advertising category by the end of 2017. Yet, despite increased investment in this medium, marketers still struggle to achieve one-to-one engagement with cross-channel consumers: A 2015 Econsultancy poll revealed less than one-third of digital marketers worldwide are capable of recognizing their customers across the Web and mobile as well as a variety of devices including laptops, smartphones and tablets.
Fortunately, marketers have access to a durable link that connects customer identities across devices and channels: email addresses. With the right technology, this valuable piece of first-party data empowers marketers to identify their existing customers across multiple channels and devices and target them with meaningful, relevant one-to-one engagement through people-based marketing.
The Path to Precision
People-based marketing is rooted in precision. Advertisers have long sought a digital media solution that would enable them to achieve the precise, customized targeting that is possible through email marketing. In 2012, Facebook responded to this yearning and launched its Custom Audiences feature, which allows marketers to upload a list of their anonymized email addresses to reach customers they already know with ads on the social media site.
While this product opened the doors for leveraging first-party data for addressable media, the success of one-to-one engagement marketers have experienced within the confines of platforms like Facebook has left them thirsting for more.
Context at Scale
Fortunately, addressable media is neither an elusive concept nor a channel-specific strategy for marketers today. With the right approach to customer engagement and data management, advertisers can not only collect, but use email addresses in such a way that benefits both brands and consumers. Today, marketers can connect email addresses stored in CRM data warehouses to digital environments seamlessly and within a matter of hours.
Rather than stifling the potential of their email lists, marketers can now partner with addressable media solutions to achieve the same one-to-one engagement that is possible on Facebook, but extend that precision to the entirety of the Internet. By anonymizing this vital piece of first-party data and connecting it to the online and offline data they already own and collect surrounding their customers, advertisers can create a single customer view, which translates to:
- Precise, informed targeting.
- Improved attribution.
- Reduced ad waste.
- Greater reach and frequency control.
- Improved customer experiences.
- Increased conversions.
The potential of people-based marketing when scaled across channels is massive. In fact, people-based advertising has doubled or tripled conversion rates for advertisers compared to traditional cookie-based tactics, and media buyers are being directed to shift their budgets to fully addressable media options.
Today, email addresses are more than a simple piece of contact information. Beyond this clear utility, an email address makes addressable media possible. As a result, brands that struggle to deliver relevant content and reduce waste in an increasingly cross-channel world are empowered to advertise more strategically.
Originally published April 05, 2016