Commentary

Top 5 Media-Buying Predictions For 2013

As a category, digital spend continued to grow in 2012. I expect this trend to continue in 2013, with a few interesting twists on the evolution of the media mix, where brands focus their media spend, and how technology, data and measurement are used to meet the needs of marketers in justifying media budgets.

The current challenge in the industry centers on “big data” and how to extract relevant data from this enormous pool of information so that marketers can take action. According to IDC, by 2020 the amount of per-person data will be 50 times more than in 2010. Yes -- only about .5 percent of the universe is actually analyzed, despite 25 percent of the data having value if analyzed. Getting to the valuable “nuggets” of data across media and channels can help marketers put a finer point on where they spend today, why, and the tangible results they are seeing in order to justify current (and future) budgets.

Here are a few turns we might see in 2013 that will make for an interesting ride.

  • Media-buying agencies and agency trading desks will private-label their own DMP: Successful agencies will integrate DMP capability with user-level analytics and advanced attribution, allowing them to build and optimize media plans and targeting tactics holistically. They will not build the technology themselves, but will partner (and license the technology).
  • Actionable data is key: The real value will come from media intelligence -- the ability to unify siloed data sets such as CRM, Web sites, or offline data and measure media and audience across all marketing channels, generating actionable insights that move the needle across large portions of the media budget. Moving the needle will help both marketers and media buyers justify their current budgets and effectively pitch their executive team for an increase going forward.
  • 2013 will not be the year for mobile: Today there is no justification to move budget from current media channels into mobile. While many report that mobile has the most potential going forward, until there is proof that mobile can deliver the additional reach or sales a brand is looking for, advertisers will continue to do small-scale trials but will not shift a significant portion of their spend in this direction. 
  • The debate over the value of social ends in 2013: Social will become a larger part of the digital marketing mix due to analytics and measurement that substantiate its value as a channel. This includes its influence on conversions throughout the sales funnel and across all customer touchpoints. For example, we have seen that media plans with Facebook drive 24 percent more new sales than those without. This trend will continue as others within the social landscape try to validate their advertising value as well.
  • Industry consolidation will continue: Twenty percent of LUMAscape companies will merge, get acquired or go bankrupt. The ad tech landscape in general is very confusing, with marketing messages that all sound the same. The time is now for those wanting to justify their existence to validate big data with actionable insights and deliver measurement that means something. Without driving increased reach or sales, companies will struggle to inform marketers and demonstrate value as part of the digital landscape.

Those are some of our predictions. What do you think will be some of the biggest twists and turns for 2013?

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1 comment about "Top 5 Media-Buying Predictions For 2013".
  1. Ronnie Perchik from PromoAid, LLC , January 16, 2013 at 10:08 a.m.
    Companies like ours, and DOmedia, are already seeing your first prediction come true.