Part 2: Buying Responsibly and with Heart During the Coronavirus Outbreak

As we approach the pinnacle of shopping weekends, I can’t help but to think back to the article Digilant’s VP of Paid Media, Mike Addizio, wrote in March: Buying Responsibly and with Heart During the Coronavirus Outbreak. Written at the very start of the spread of coronavirus in the United States, Mike offered advice to brands in a time when many companies had cut their media budget. He wrote that, for those that had the financial means to continue advertising, there was a window of opportunity as our team saw CPMs dropping across the board. 

However, his advice didn’t stop there. He encouraged brands to use this window to evoke messages of positivity, hope, understanding, and helpfulness. He outlined the following ideas: 

  • Consider a campaign that spreads positivity, shows the empathy of your brand, and illustrates how you’re helping those affected by the crisis. Build brand equity.
  • High-risk populations need access to goods and services they usually shop in-store. Make them aware that you are there to serve them in their time of need.
  • Consumers are already financially impacted. Reach those consumers who may need a discount more than ever.

8 months later, this advice still reigns true. Although many brands have reinstated their digital media budgets as we’ve begun to find a routine in our “new normal,” brands and consumers alike are still facing a holiday season like never before. Many people are opting to forgo their usual Thanksgiving plans in an effort to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus amongst their friends and family – something many have never experienced in their life. 

So, any piece of comfort, empathy, or stress-alleviation brands can offer through digital advertising campaigns and marketing content will be well-received by consumers. That’s not to say your ads need to be melancholy or even directly mention the pandemic (we all remember this video that went viral in April). Below are a few ways to tailor the advice Mike shared at the start of the pandemic towards your holiday campaigns: 

1. Spread positivity and show empathy of your brand

The pandemic cannot be ignored, however, consumers don’t want (or need) to be reminded of the changes they’re facing this holiday season in the thousands of ads they see every week. Choose to spread messages of hope, positivity, gratitude, and other sentiments of holiday cheer. Without blatantly ignoring the current state, as advertisers, we can keep our messages uplifting in time where many consumers may be feeling overwhelmed. 

2. High-risk populations (amongst other people) still need access to goods and services they usually purchase in-store.

Whether it is the high-risk community, people that prefer not to shop in-store, or just people that have adapted to online shopping (and now even prefer it), heading to the mall to do their shopping, is something consumers will not be doing as much this year, if at all.  Consumers will continue to shop online now more than ever before. Meeting these consumers where they are is essential. Highlight that you offer free shipping or expedited shipping, that they can buy online and pick-up in-store, or that you offer curbside shopping. Anyway you are able to alleviate concerns about points of gathering, which will help those who are changing their normal shopping habits. 

3. Reach those consumers who may need a discount more than ever.

Not only are people reckoning with their changed holiday plans, many Americans are also feeling financial hardship brought on by the pandemic. Again, you don’t have to overtly mention this in your advertisements. Consumers will naturally resonate with brands that offer discounts or savings of any sort over the holidays (loyalty discounts, buy now/pay later, etc). 

Advertising Responsibly and with Heart During the Holiday Season

Although it may feel like we’ve grown used to many of the changes we’ve faced due to the pandemic, none of us have ever experienced a holiday season like this before. Some of those feelings from the start of the pandemic of worry, uneasiness, and/or stress may begin to bubble back up throughout the holiday season. 

Just like Mike mentioned at the start of the pandemic, there is a window of opportunity for brands to be a beacon of light. Consumers will remember and appreciate brands who offered them any sense of relief during this holiday season. Brands need to interact with consumers using messages addressing what consumers need right now – whether that is price discounts, free shipping, or curbside pickup. 

It goes without saying, this is a unique time for brands and consumers alike. However, it is also a time of opportunity. In conclusion, just as Mike wrote in March: “It’s important to use this opportunity to do good and be useful. And be sure to act quickly…Stay safe out there.”

3 Reasons Why Omnichannel Retail Marketing is the Future of Ecommerce

In March of 2020, the world as people saw it officially changed when the novel coronavirus outbreak became the Covid-19 pandemic and dramatically affected the lives of millions of people around the globe. Wearing facial masks became ordinary, and social distancing became the societal norm.

Due to the fear of getting sick, people did not leave their homes to shop, so they did the next best thing—they shopped from their homes’ comfort for everything they needed while on their computer or cell phone.

From groceries to clothes and from toilet paper to electronics, people had the online convenience to shop for all they required and all they wanted, thereby boosting the eCommerce industry into a digital stratosphere the world has never seen before but will probably see again.

How though? By way of omnichannel retail marketing.

Read on and learn more about this digital phenomenon, how learning about it can help your digital marketing agency, and the three reasons it is the ultimate future of the eCommerce industry.

What is Omnichannel Retail Marketing?

In short, omnichannel retail marketing bridges the physical world with the digital world. In the long-form, omnichannel retail marketing is the fully integrated marketing approach to multichannel retail and commerce, which provides a unified and seamless consumer experience across all channels and touchpoints. Such channels include cell phones, eCommerce marketplaces, computers, in-person storefronts, TV, radio, mail, catalogs, social media, etc.

Overview of Omnichannel Retail Marketing

According to Salesforce’s studies, 55% of consumers say there is somewhat of a disconnect while switching between channels during their retail experiences. Yet, Statistica’s additional research suggests that only 22% of retailers in North America consider omnichannel experiences a top priority as many of them have only been using multichannel marketing strategies.

Multichannel vs. Omnichannel

While omnichannel and multichannel get often used interchangeably, they are two different ideas.

Multichannel refers to separate and disconnected channels, while omnichannel talks about the connection between the digital and the brick-and-mortar and their ability to seamlessly work together to improve a customer’s buying experience journey.

Another distinct difference between multichannel and omnichannel is their ultimate goals.

Multichannel concentrates more on the sale and doing everything it can to make the deal happen. On the other hand, omnichannel marketing focuses more on merging a brand’s physical world with its digital world to improve customer retention and provide a laid back, unforgettable, and consistent shopping experience–something every digital marketing agency needs to know about.

But how do you deliver an omnichannel retail experience?

First, you need to understand your consumers’ behavior and become familiar with their journey using multiple channels, including online, eCommerce, social, mobile, and in-store. You must understand your customer and what influences them, drives them, and keeps them coming back to your store. By gaining a deeper understanding of your customers, you will need to expand your number of touchpoints in a purposeful way to deliver what the customer wants before they even realize they want it. 

Second, brands must implement technology that can share inventory and product data with customers in real-time, through any channel, but can gather information to personalize the buyers’ shopping experiences.

But early 80% of retailers state they fail to offer consumers a unified brand experience because they are falling behind, and here is a list of the reasons why:

  • Lack of internal organization (39%)
  • Lack of consumer analytics across channels (67%)
  • Siloed organization (48%)
  • Low data quality (45%)
  • Inability to identify consumers across shopping trips (45%)

You can start to overcome the obstacles above, with not only the help of a digital marketing agency, by understanding the potential of omnichannel and why its strategies are critical to your campaigns’ success.

Why an Omnichannel Strategy is Critical for Campaign Success

Omnichannel retail marketing will not just track consumers across one or two channels, but all of them. Omnichannel retailers will allow consumers to experience a brand and not only a channel within a brand.

Omnichannel retail marketing must be implemented sooner rather than later, to uphold a competitive advantage.

The omnichannel user experience leverages data about one sales channel to invite the customer to participate in another, thereby allowing their actions to feel inherent to the given medium instead of forced.

One primary reason an omnichannel strategy is critical for campaign success is that nearly 75% of shoppers state they use multiple channels to compare prices, look for deals, or use in-store tablets to shop on the internet. Besides, omnichannel customers spend 4% more on each in-store shopping occasion and 10% more online than single-channel shoppers.

In short, the more channels a customer uses, the more money they spend.

Read on and discover 3 Reasons Why Omnichannel Retail Marketing is the Future of eCommerce, and how a digital marketing agency can help.

3 Reasons Why Omnichannel Retail Marketing is the Future of eCommerce

More Personalized Experiences

When consumers feel like the brand knows them, it personalizes their shopping experience. The goal of omnichannel retail, after all, is providing shoppers with one easy, cohesive, and smooth shopping process.

An online business needs to consider what people want to see, and no matter how shoppers interact with the retailer, they need to get the same positive impression of the retailer’s brand.

Shoppers care about personalization. According to an Evergage study, 96% of marketers have improved customer relationships by providing personalized shopping experiences. In comparison, 88% of the study’s respondents said their customers and prospects expect a personalized experience.

In short, consumers want things to be personal for them, which is one primary reason why omnichannel retail marketing is the future of eCommerce.

Detailed Information About Customer Behavior

Omnichannel retail marketing will give consumers personalization, but it will provide data about their behavior to satisfy their needs.

With all the different ways to enter into a brand’s ecosystem, retailers need to understand their consumers and their behavior more than they have ever had to before.

According to Harvard Business Review research, approximately 7% of participants shopped exclusively online, while only 20% shopped solely in retail stores. The remaining percentage favored a mix and used multiple channels throughout their shopping journey.

Due to this eclectic combination, it is imperative to know when a customer first encounters your brand and when they end up finally converting. Gaining access to these different pathways can help companies better understand how to give improved experiences to their shoppers and recognize the key touchpoints, thereby funneling their marketing budget adequately.  

Retailers Can Concentrate on the Most Effective KPIs and Effectively Target Customers

If you have a better understanding of the various touchpoints customers use and how they navigate their way through your brand, you can more effectively and efficiently optimize the points they convert.

Approximately 71% of consumers use their phones to research products before buying them—even while they are already in the store. So, developing an omnichannel marketing strategy that targets and converts potential shoppers at precisely the right time is essential.

Suppose brands better understood how consumers use each channel (whether to purchase or research). In that case, they could put additional resources into the conversion point—or any other point that pushes the customer to convert and buy the item).

Brands need to track data and make more informed decisions based on it. There are five key touchpoint areas worth considering: awareness, engagement, trial, conversion, and loyalty—the two most important of conversion and loyalty. Why? Conversions drive new business while loyalty drives repeat business.

Not every touchpoint will create conversions or even drive conversions to the right touchpoint, so they may either not need any attention or may need more attention than ever before. Additional data does not equate to better decision making, so understanding that while you may have more KPIs (or key performance indicators), it is critical to focus on the ones that drive your growth and customers’ experiences. An experienced digital marketing agency can assist you with this very thing.

Besides, omnichannel marketing relies on holistic approaches to measure success.

So, when your brand starts thinking about omnichannel retail marketing, or if you have questions, concerns, or circumstances you would like to discuss, Digilant is here to help. For over ten years, Digilant has helped digital marketing agencies and brands with omnichannel digital advertising strategies that are data-driven, actionable, and effective. Digilant’s success is due to continual innovation to help its clients with purpose-built solutions tailored to their needs. So, do hesitate. Contact Digilant today!

Important Questions to Ask Before Hiring Digital Advertising Companies

Digital advertising – and programmatic advertising specifically – has continued to account for a large portion of companies’ media budgets. In 2021, programmatic digital display advertising is projected to reach just under $80 billion in the US. With these growing investments in the industry, companies are more frequently looking to external partners to own the strategy, buying, and optimization of their digital media campaigns. Relying on digital advertising companies, not only frees up the company’s resources internally but also opens up the door to a team of digital media buying experts who understand the ins and outs of a complex and ever-changing industry.

However, there is no shortage of digital advertising companies in the US (and world), and deciphering which company will best fit your companies needs can be an overwhelming and daunting task. Whether you’re at the beginning stages of researching digital advertising partners or you’ve narrowed your list down and have started to more thoroughly vet a few contenders – it can be tricky trying to decide which company is the best fit for your company’s goals. To help you get started, we’ve outlined 10 important questions to ask before hiring digital advertising companies.

10 Important Questions to Ask Before Hiring Digital Advertising Companies

1. How do you classify yourself? 

As mentioned above, the world of digital advertising is constantly changing and so too are how companies define themselves. Understanding how a company classifies themselves (and their offerings) will ensure that you are partnering with a company that can accomplish – and hopefully exceed – your goals. Is the company a DSP? A trading desk? Management company? Platform company? Or something else? 

2. Do you have access to PMP and/or Open Exchanges?

There isn’t a right or wrong answer to this question, but knowing which the company has access to will give you an idea of where your media will be placed. PMPs (private marketplaces) give you greater control over where your media is being placed whereas open exchanges offer great scale.

3. What DSP do you use? 

This question would obviously be duplicative if the answer to question one is that they are a DSP. However, if the company is not a DSP, it’s important to know which platforms your campaign will be run on.  Companies like Forrester Wave, Digiday, and Gartner release lists of top DSPs based on a variety of factors. These are helpful resources to ensure the digital advertising company utilizes industry-leading DSPs.

4. What cross-device technology do you implement?

This question might seem niche to ask up-front, however, if you plan on running ads across mobile, desktop, and/or other channels, it’s not a question to overlook. Consumers no longer stick to one device – they’re browsing on their laptop, with social media open on their phone and music streaming in the background. As of 2018, the average consumer owns 3.2 connected devices. To ensure media budgets are spent effectively, you will want to ensure the company you choose has technology in place that allows for frequency capping across devices. 

5. What data providers do you have access to?

Knowing which data providers digital advertising companies have access to will give you insight into which audience segments and profiles they will use to access your consumers. Knowing this upfront will ensure that you are using a partner that will actually reach your audience. If you’ve been in conversation with a digital advertising company and their answer to this question is that they prioritize healthcare-related data partners, that might be a red flag if you are a CPG company. 

6. What brand safety measure do you implement in your campaigns?

Brand safety is a top concern among many brands (read more about how to combat brand safety concerns here). Digital advertising companies should have clear tactics and technologies in place to eliminate concerns about where your content will be placed. Whether it is solely PMP deals or creating custom block-lists, there are a variety of options companies can administer in order to ensure your brand remains safe. There isn’t an exact answer you should be looking for here, regarding which technologies they have in place, it is just essential that they have a clear answer for you.  

7. Do you offer creative services?

As mentioned previously, consumers use a variety of devices at any given time. Not only is it important to have frequency capping across these devices, but it is also helpful if your digital advertising company has access to reformat, design, and even create ads that can be used in these different ad placements. 

Weighing the importance of this answer is up to your discretion, as this might be something you can quickly handle in-house. But, it is helpful to know upfront that your digital advertising partner can also offer creative services either in a pinch or all the time. 

8. What is your optimization process? Automatic or managed by people?

AI and machine learning have been a hot topic in the industry for a few years now. Some digital advertising companies have leaned into this technology more than others. Those who have stayed away from this automated technology will rely on people managing your daily bid process. 

Similar to creative offerings, the importance of automated vs. human-led optimization should align with your companies values and preferences.  

9. What level of transparency do you provide in reporting?

Since the early stages of digital advertising, ad tech companies have had a pretty long leash, working pretty much autonomously. In more recent years, brands have started to hold digital advertising companies accountable, demanding greater transparency as to where their budgets are being spent. Digital advertising companies should be giving you a holistic view of your campaigns throughout the entire customer journey. 

10. What are your fees and how are they calculated? 

All digital advertising companies have different ways of calculating fees: percentage-based, standard rate, etc. This, again, is a subject of choosing a digital advertising partner that is up to your discretion – or the determining factor when comparing different companies. It is, however, important to know how the company you’re going to partner with calculates and charges their fees. 

Tying it all together: Picking a Digital Advertising Company

As mentioned previously, for most companies, digital media budgets are rapidly growing. Companies that are choosing to invest these budgets through digital media companies to organize, manage, and optimize their digital advertising campaigns need to ensure that the money is being spent efficiently. However, whether your digital media spend is in the millions of dollars or thousands of dollars, the digital advertising company you choose to partner with should align with and work their best to achieve your company’s goals. 

Digital advertising companies aren’t perfect, there might be aspects that don’t one hundred percent align with what you are looking for from a partner. As you’re getting started with this process, make a “must-have” list of things you want from a digital advertising company. Prioritize these things and ultimately use them to guide your decision. Although the digital advertising company you choose might not be perfect, it should perfectly fit your must-have list.

And, a good rule of thumb to always keep in mind as you ask these questions: if it sounds too good to be true, it most likely is. 

Digilant is Different than Other Digital Advertising Companies

Digilant is a platform-agnostic, omnichannel marketing partner. We partner with agencies and brands to bring online marketing services that make the success of all things digital possible. All our clients work with our team of planning and insights experts who incorporate data from 100+ partners. With these data partnerships, we create a thorough plan that will work as a roadmap throughout campaigns. 

Once your campaign is ready to go live, we implement your brand safety toolkit – which ranges from high safety measures such as exclusively PMP deals to the standard toolkit including an always-on blocklist. We combine the power of technology with the unmatched personalization and expertise of the human touch. Our team of digital campaign experts consistently works to optimize campaigns, in real-time. 

As campaigns are running, we offer real-time reporting and measurement that is 100% transparent. We understand the importance of a holistic view of campaigns, throughout the entire customer journey, across all devices.  

We also understand there’s more you’re thinking about as you’re researching where to invest your media budgets: your budget. That is why we have created 3 different models of service: full-service, managed service, and self-service. We understand that your media needs may change, so we have service models to adapt to these changes, without missing a beat in your campaign. As you continue researching digital advertising companies

Digilant is eager to show you how our winning client service can help maximize your digital media budgets in 2021. Let’s talk.

Experts: What to expect from a pandemic holiday season

Experts: What to expect from a pandemic holiday season

Businesses may have re-opened but that doesn’t mean the fears surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic have waned, especially with colder weather coming in to the Northern Hemisphere. As coronavirus cases once again spike, many merchants are wondering what might happen over the coming holiday season. We asked a series of experts how they think the pandemic will influence holiday shopping.

Brands can expect to see more sales happening online and on mobile. To meet the needs of shoppers, it’s critical that marketers build convenience throughout the customer journey. Using mobile messaging and push notifications can help marketers stay in step with mobile shoppers. Additionally, tapping into Facebook and Instagram’s in-app shopping features can eliminate friction for shoppers who are ready to buy and want to make purchases within native social environments,”

– Raquel Rosenthal, CEO, Digilant.

 

Read more here.

Why Analytics and Transparency Go Hand in Hand

It is no secret that analytics and data-driven measurement are crucial components to brand success. With the current circumstances of the  COVID-19 pandemic, data analysis and measurement have become even more critical. Companies must continuously engage with their customers, create relevant content, and grow their businesses, all while their budgets are being cut significantly. During these uncertain times, companies need to become more efficient than ever before.

Brands need a transparent view of their marketing efforts to optimize limited budgets. Thankfully, today’s technology enables real-time access to data and insights regarding the best (and worst) performing elements of campaigns

“Diglant’s Analytics solution successfully provides the integration of various platforms and channels for a transparent, 360-degree view of a brand’s advertising and marketing efforts.”

– Wes Farris, VP of Product, Digilant.

Companies can use data and insights to adjust key performance indicators (KPIs), eliminate unnecessary waste, and direct their spending towards the best performing channels and strategies. Greater transparency enables companies to make informed, timely decisions about which direction to take with their marketing efforts.

Below we’ve outlined 3 reasons why analytics and transparency go hand in hand:

  1. Better Channel Efficiency:

Analytics and measurement are critical components to advertising because they allow you to justify increased spend towards specific channels or tactics that are moving the needle on your goals, whether it’s increasing brand awareness or bringing in conversions. 

“At Digilant, we provide clients with a centralized location where they can have a unified view for performance across all the platforms, such as MediaMath Media Math, Google Adwords, and Google Analytics.”

– Chander Yadav, Director of Analytics, Digilant.

You can quickly analyze and decide what channels or platforms are working and which ones are dragging you down, so you can quickly add or drop budgets. 

  1. More Tactical Optimizations:

Not only does an analytics solution provide channel and KPI analysis, but it can also hone in on tactical performance to help drill down channel level details that might otherwise be overlooked. 

For example, Digilant’s analytic solution allows our team to quickly look into the paid search channel and see which keywords are driving the value for the client, allowing us to optimize the bidding. With the mobile SDK integration, we can see how many users downloaded a specific brand’s app or how many hours they spent within this app. Moreover, we can learn what creative messages resonate with customers, what is the best time of the day to reach them, and what devices customers use to engage with brands.

With this holistic, unified view companies can quickly see which campaign or which metrics need attention and optimization to make sure that they spend their media budget efficiently.

  1. Prevent Data Bias

Omnichannel data views allow us to analyze how each channel is contributing to the larger picture. When running campaigns, one could assume that social media paid efforts may result in more leads, but with data, we can confirm or deny this assumption. 

Although dashboarding allows for easily accessible data, one must still consider that data doesn’t always show the whole story. One of the biggest challenges that companies face when evaluating their performance is that insights can be biased, even those gained from the largest advertising players such as Facebook, Google, or Amazon. 

Unfortunately, there is no 100% truly unbiased solution. However, many experts believe that multi-touch attribution models (which are tied to a user cookie) developed by independent data measurement platforms show better visibility and report data in an unbiased way. The future will reveal how the industry will replace cookies, and if brands will rely on specific publishers or other independent players. 

How to blend analytics and transparency in your digital advertising

At Digilant, we provide a unique value for our clients by educating about the pros and cons of options and providing our clients with the best solutions for measurement and transparency. 

Interested in learning more? Let’s talk. 

5 Reasons Why Omnichannel Marketing is Important

As digital advertising technology has continued to improve and innovate, it has yielded great benefits for advertisers: better consumer insights, better targeting capabilities, better measurement and a better understanding of attribution.

These innovations are essential as the consumer journey adapts and changes at extremely fast rates. It’s estimated it can take as many as 60 touchpoints with a consumer before you make a sale. So, as advertisers, it can feel impossible to keep up with what touchpoints are most essential. Where are consumers shopping? Online? In-store? Which social media platform is trending right now? Are consumers really watching more CTV than linear television? And, most likely the question at the very top of your list: how can I tie all these various touchpoints together to create one seamless shopping experience for my consumer? 

This is why omnichannel marketing is important. Omnichannel marketing allows advertisers to quickly adapt their advertising campaigns without losing any insights, data, or purchase points. It allows for a seamless purchase journey for consumers, every step of the way. As a top omnichannel marketing partner, our list of reasons why omnichannel marketing is important is nearly endless. But, we’ve narrowed that list down to the top five reasons, keep reading to learn more.

But first, what is omnichannel marketing?

Omnichannel marketing is an approach to marketing that addresses the customer experience on each channel – desktop browser, mobile, retail, social media, podcast, and any others you might use – and how customers transition between each channel as they make purchases.

Why omnichannel marketing is important.

1.Shopping is Omnichannel

“Omni” meaning “in all ways or places” could not more perfectly define the shopping experience consumers have now. Consumers are making purchases on the train while commuting to work, via their Amazon Alexa device in their living room, at the mall in-store, via their music streaming service. Anywhere they are able to, consumers are making purchases. 

A brand can cover all its bases with a multichannel marketing solution, however, the back-end integration needed to tie the entire experience together will be lost. 

So, although it may seem obvious, The number one reason why omnichannel marketing is important is that today’s shopping experience is omnichannel. As advertisers, it is our job to stay one step ahead of consumers to ensure we are meeting them with product offers and ads whenever appropriate. Our advertising process must mirror the way in which consumers are shopping in an effort to stay ahead of the competition and top of mind with consumers.

2. Data Collection and Analysis

As mentioned above, omnichannel marketing is important because it gives advertisers a robust full-picture analysis of their advertising campaigns. Gone are the days of analyzing each channel individually, organizing multiple spreadsheets and decks evaluating which tactics or campaigns were successful in driving ROI. 

An omnichannel marketing solution gives you a unified 360-degree view of consumers engaging with your brand – across every step of the customer journey. A single analytics tool, allows you to connect and visualize consumers’ behavior and interest across all campaigns, which allows for you to better adapt your campaigns in the future to meet their preferences. 

3. Personalization

In a recent study, 90% of consumers say that messages from companies that are not personally relevant to them are “annoying.” And, as demographics skew younger, the necessity for personalized ads is even more important. In that same study, 67% of Millennials and Gen Zers stated that they expect offers from companies to always be personalized. 

With this information, it’s clear that having a personalized ad experience is no longer a luxury, but rather a necessity for brands. This is a rather lofty task for advertisers to take on. But, with a structured omnichannel marketing solution in place, serving personalized ads across a multitude of devices and channels is possible. 

4. Better Synergy Across Departments

As mentioned in our blog post about omnichannel marketing challenges, there’s a historic division between sales and marketing teams within (most) organizations. No matter the reason for this, an omnichannel marketing solution can help propel synergy amongst members of your organization. 

When in place, omnichannel marketing ensures that every step of the customer journey mirrors the same messaging, product offering, and tone. If a consumer is speaking with a customer representative, they will know which products that consumer already purchased. Sales teams can send more tailored emails as they’ll know which products or services the consumer is browsing. Whether it’s an email, customer representative call, advertisement, or billboard – the tone is the same. Overall, this unity across departments leads to a better customer service experience and better brand awareness for your company. 

5. Cost-Effective

There’s nothing more frustrating to an advertiser than wasted ad impressions. Omnichannel marketing solutions take the guesswork out of where you should place your ad. The data and analytics tools ensure that you are reaching an engaged audience, on their preferred channels. And, as those consumer preferences and audiences change, so too will your ad placements. If one week your Facebook ads are out-performing SEM, shift budget quickly and easily to ensure you’re taking advantage of that active Facebook audience. 

You no longer have to wait for a pre-paid campaign cycle to end, with omnichannel marketing solutions, those dollars can easily be shifted to tactics or channels that are performing better. This ability to rapidly change and respond to your campaigns to meet consumers allows for a better overall ROI for your company – another reason why omnichannel marketing is important not just to advertisers but to the organization overall. 

How do I incorporate these benefits into my digital advertising? 

Now that you’ve read about why omnichannel marketing is important you may be thinking about tools and resources you’ll need to make this a reality. Below we’ve outlined a few options to help get you started.

1.Cross Device Solution

In order to tie your campaigns together across multiple devices, a cross-device solution is essential. A cross-device solution, uses deterministic data (such as a cookie or Mobile advertising ID) or individual (such as a customer ID), to link users across browsers and devices and build out a proprietary cross-device graph. Advertisers pass back a deterministic identifier so that associations can be built out for the advertiser’s customer base. This allows advertisers to create better targeted messaging, attribute conversions properly, and avoid flooding users with ads. All in all, a more personalized ad experience for consumers.  

2. Analytics & Attribution 

Analytics and attribution dashboards allow advertisers to explore and interact with data through engaging visualizations that offer the full picture of their campaigns. You no longer have to wait for someone else to calculate, analyze, and report on how digital dollars are being spent and optimized. 

3. Enlist a strategic omnichannel marketing partner

Many brands don’t have the in-house resources to build a full omnichannel marketing team within their organization. At Digilant, we understand what an omnichannel marketing solution requires, and we have a team of data-driven experts alongside purpose-built solutions ready to take your omnichannel campaigns from now to next. 

Where traditional agencies can be slow to react, overly complex, and high cost, we are proactive, nimble, and readily available. Our omnichannel marketing solutions span across the full suite of channels: social, programmatic, affiliate, influencer TV, radio, podcast. So, no matter where you are in your digital marketing journey, we know what it takes to scale media buying quickly and effectively. From planning and insights to buying and optimization, you can trust Digilant to manage all aspects of our omnichannel marketing strategy. Interested in learning more? Let’s talk. 

Home for the Holidays: An Advertiser’s Guide to Reaching Shoppers this Holiday Season [Part 7]

Key Takeaways

Over our holiday blog series, we discussed major changes advertisers can expect over the next few months as we adapt our holiday season and traditions to the current state of 2020. Despite these changes, the holiday shopping season still looks extremely promising for brands The Digilant team has outlined tactics and channels that advertisers should pay special attention to in order to meet consumers at all stages of the shopping cycle.  

Our advertiser’s Guide to Reaching Shoppers this Holiday Season includes changes we can expect this holiday season in regard to spending and timing (in part 2), what consumer expect from brands (in part 3), the impact online shopping will have on spending (in part 4), how to reach the different holiday shoppers based on their preferences (in part 5), and what travel advertisers can expect as the over the next few months (in part 6). 

Did you miss part of our holiday shopping blog series? Start reading part 1 here.

Whether you’re in the midst of your holiday advertising campaigns, just launched your ads, or still finalizing plans as Black Friday approaches, here are a few key takeaways to remember throughout this unique holiday shopping season.

1. Start your campaigns early.

Many consumers have most likely started their holiday shopping – taking advantage of some of the deals they found during Amazon Prime Days (October 13 & 14). And if they haven’t already made the purchase, browsing, brainstorming, and list building have definitely already started. Launch your campaigns as early as possible to stay top of mind with consumers throughout the entire browsing & purchasing process.

2. Diversify your offers, promotions, and ad creatives throughout the season.

As mentioned above, this season, advertisers are in it for the long haul with over 70 days between Amazon Prime Day and Christmas.  Keep consumers interested with different offers throughout the season. If you’re launching your campaign early, offering a discount (BOGO, x% off, etc.) or a loyalty program will go over well with consumers. As the gift-giving holidays get closer, consumers will be keen on free shipping for any last-minute purchases.

Don’t let your ad creatives go stale – keeping imagery and messaging current, fresh and new will keep consumers interested throughout the season. 

3. Online Shopping. Online Shopping. Online Shopping.

We can’t say it enough – online shopping will be the big-ticket path to purchase this season. Consumers have already been shopping online more than ever before with stay at home order due to the coronavirus pandemic, and the holidays will continue this pattern. Prioritizing mobile advertising to target consumers browsing on their phones is essential this holiday season.

4. Understand what demographic of shoppers you are going after and what their media habits are.

It’s important for advertisers to understand their consumers based on their digital and online shopping habits (as that will be the driving factor this holiday season). Understand the demographic group you’re targeting this holiday season and then determine their digital footprint. Prioritize these channels in your digital advertising plans.

A quick cheat sheet, think: Gen Z/Zillennials and TikTok or Instagram. Millennials and Amazon or Pinterest. Baby Boomers and Facebook. 

5. Holiday travel will look different but (most likely) won’t stop. 

Consumers who usually fly south, or to family members in other locations for the winter holidays might be toggling back and forth with the idea of traveling this holiday season. The average consumers research a trip for a week before booking – stay top of mind with consumers as they research and browse for travel accommodations.

6. Incorporate an omnichannel marketing solution

Consumers will prioritize brands that offer them purchasing and item gathering options (buy online pick up in-store, curbside pickup, deliver, etc.) that meet their needs and preferences this holiday shopping season. As advertisers, it’s our job to ensure that our advertising aligns with these preferences and showcases the different options available. Incorporating an omnichannel marketing strategy is more important than ever before.

In the simplest of terms, omnichannel marketing is an approach to marketing that addresses the customer experience on each channel – desktop browser, mobile, retail, social media, podcast, and any others you might use – and how customers transition between channels they make purchases.

Advertisers need to ensure they have every viable channel covered this holiday season and that reporting and measurement are solidified in order to optimize campaigns as the shopping season continues.

Many brands don’t have the in-house resources to establish an omnichannel marketing strategy. At Digilant, we understand the importance of a data-driven strategy this holiday season. As a team of data analysts, biddable-media platform experts, and ad tech specialists sitting alongside planners and strategists, we utilize our data-driven mindset to manage, run, and optimize omnichannel campaigns for brands and advertisers. Interested in learning more about how our radical transparency can help you develop and execute your omnichannel marketing strategy for the holiday season and into 2021? Let’s talk.

Download our infographic Home for the Holidays: An Advertisers’ Guide to Reaching Shoppers this Holiday Season.

Home for the Holidays: An Advertiser’s Guide to Reaching Shoppers this Holiday Season [Part 6]

Will Consumers Fly South for the Winer?

Another industry that sees a huge spike during the holiday season is travel. Whether it was traveling to visit family or hitting up one of the top holiday destinations like Disneyland or Hawaii, 115.6 million Americans packed up their sleigh and headed somewhere new for the holidays in 2019. For those that opted to fly, the average ticket price was about $600, with peak travel on December 21, 22, and 23. 

This industry has already faced tremendous challenges throughout the year, so what will the usually busy and bustling airports look like over the next few months?  

Again, this is one of those areas where experts have varying opinions about what the travel industry will face in the coming holiday season. Some predict that this season will actually have an uptick in holiday traveling because consumers have been saving their vacation days throughout the year and will be looking for an end-of-year getaway. Others predict that more consumers will opt for drivable destinations and stick with road trips rather than flying. The safe bet is that holiday travel will look different, but it won’t stop. So, as an advertiser, it’s important that you keep up with important trends and shift your media to best swoop those consumers’ budgets who are opting for a getaway. 

The Early Bird Gets the Worm

According to Guesty, a short-term rental property management platform, Thanksgiving bookings are up 30% and winter holidays are seeing a 40% increase. It’s customary to see travel websites suggest booking a trip 4-6 weeks before you plan to leave, however as consumers who are opting for travel are taking advantage of lower year-on-year prices, Expedia is recommending a longer window: 60-90 days before Thanksgiving and 30-60 days before Christmas. 

About half of consumers spend about a week researching before deciding to book a trip which means peak research time is in full swing. Not knowing what the holiday season will bring for travel brands makes it even more essential to get your brand out in front of consumers as they’re researching places to visit, accommodations, and transportation options. We’ve outlined a few key tactics travel advertisers should take advantage of this holiday season. 

Expedia

As consumers are researching possible destinations, build brand awareness amongst this engaged travel shopping audience on premium e-commerce travel sites. Private exchanges on premium travel sites draw a desirable spectrum of audience segments including family travelers, leisure travelers, business travelers, luxury travelers, and more.

Location Targeting

As mentioned above, a driving-distance destination might be the travel option of choice this holiday season. Create custom geo-fences by setting a specific radius around cities that are driving distance from your location to attract potential customers both with mobile and desktop ads. You can also utilize mobile location data to target consumers who had been to certain locations in the last few months.

Transactional Data

Utilize 3rd party CC data to reach consumers in an array of different areas of travel such as have booked a hotel, but not a flight, have stayed at “x” hotel in “x” months.

 

Consumers who usually head out of town for the holidays might be toggling back and forth with the idea. Showcasing your offerings might be the differentiator to push them over the edge and book their getaway. Implemented strategic tactics across your digital advertising strategy to get your brand in front of the right eyes is more important this holiday season than ever before. 

Download our infographic Home for the Holidays: An Advertisers’ Guide to Reaching Shoppers this Holiday Season.

Movers and Shakers: Carr takes up paid social role at Digilant

Mobile Marketing: Movers and Shakers

The mobile marketing industry is ever-changing, and that applies to the people as much as the technology. Movers & Shakers is our regular feature following the hottest hires in the industry, so you can keep track of who’s joined which company, and what they’re doing there.

Carr takes up paid social role at Digilant

Digilant, an omnchannel digital advertising services company, has hired Calvin Carr as its new Director of Paid Social. Based in New York City, Carr will be at the forefront of Digilant’s social team, offering strategic counsel on paid social campaigns.

Carr’s previous experience includes working as a Senior Strategist for Havas Attn, where he led a team focused on helping brands understand human behaviour and how it translates to digital mediums. Prior to this, Carr worked for Havas Formula, where he worked with a variety of clients, including Chase, K-Y, Edrington and ADP. Before Havas Formula, Carr was a Research Associate for Trumpet Advertising, where he focused on brand strategy and rebranding efforts. He started his career at The VIA Agency, where he assisted with campaign strategy for brands such as Welch’s, 1800 Tequila, and Perdue Chicken.

Read the full post here.

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