The Five Biggest Buzzwords Of 2015

For those of you who didn’t know, in addition to being a rambunctious rapper, I’m a catchphrase connoisseur, an argot aficionado, a jargon junkie, and a buzzword binger (and bingo-er).

For seven years, I thoroughlytracked the trending topics at the biannual MediaPost Search Insider Summit.

In keeping my fingers on the pulse of the industry, I’ve dotted my “i”s -- from “integration” to “iPhones” -- and crossed my “t”s   -- from “targeting” to “transparency.”



Between my awesome alliteration and hyperactive hyperlinking, methinks I’ve established myself as a reliable resource on the business of buzzwords.

So here are my predictions for the five biggest buzzwords of 2015:

1. Mobile. The “year of mobile” has come and gone. Not sure if it was 2014 or 2013, but it’s already been brought’n. I’ll go ahead and proclaim 2015 as the “year of mobile-first.” We’re past the point of making sure everything we do has a mobile component. We’re now at the point where we need to start with mobile and then make sure everything has a desktop component. If anyone questions this strategy, just refer to this chart from BI Intelligence.

2. Native.  Unlike mobile, we have not seen the tipping point for native yet. Native advertising is still in the eye of the beholder -- that is, everyone defines it differently and delivers it differently. 2015 will bring standardization of native ad formats and scale via automation. Look no further than Yahoo Gemini for what the promise of native advertising looks like. (Hint: it looks a lot like search. After all, paid search is the best native ad format ever.)

3. Programmatic  RTB is officially DOA. Programmatic is the catch-all that we’re using to define automated ad buying, and it’s coming to more media channels every day. Just as with native, SEM is the pioneer of programmatic with its dynamic performance-based pricing – just of the reasons I pointed out in 2006 that search marketing works so well. Accordingly, search marketers remain well-positioned to play a leading role in programmatic everywhere.

4. Intent.  Another reason search marketing works so well is that the nature of proactive consumption -- people looking for things -- is the ultimate barometer of intent. There’s simply no better aperture to reach people than when they‘ve expressly indicated that they’re in the market for your product or service. As such, SEM delivers unparalleled ROI. But intent is moving beyond the search box. And the ROI is coming with it. One example is automatically creating custom audiences on social media based on paid search activity. This allows you to instantly target ads to people on Facebook after they’ve searched for something on Google, Yahoo, or Bing. 2015 promises to bring similar innovation in the way we leverage intent data across channels to (re)connect with the most lucrative customers and prospects.

5. Audience.   Say goodbye to keywords. Say hello to audiences. I’ve been advocating to put the people back into paid search for many years. In addition to taking intent from search and applying it in other channels, we also need to take affinity data from other channels and use it to inform our search strategy. In other words, we need to focus on the audience segments we’re trying to reach and continually generate insights to refine these personas and optimize our campaigns. Remarketing Lists for Search Ads is one way to execute this approach. But it’s really more than a tactic. It’s a mindset. Keep your customers in mind, not the proxies you’re using to reach them.

There you have it, folks: the top five buzzwords that’ll be blowing up in 2015. Look holistically at these trends and you’ll be well on your way to creating synergy across your marketing programs and optimizing the customer journey. #bingo

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