Are Brands Keeping Pace With Consumers' Rapid Shift To Digital?

A new report from Boston Consulting Group (BCG) finds that while spending on digital advertising in the U.S. this year is on track to surpass spending on television advertising, brands remain behind consumers in making the shift to digital. 

In fact, globally, certain markets devote more than 40% of their media advertising budget to digital marketing, according to Magna. In that way, we’re rapidly reaching the point when companies will spend more on social, search, online video, and display advertising than they will on traditional platforms.

The BCG report points out what others have also said: that the old tactics aren’t working and brands need to pick up the pace and take a page from their consumers with respect to their digital behaviors.

“Most traditional marketing techniques that marketers were trained to use, like broad segmentation of customers and marketing funnels, have no place in digital marketing,” stated Marc Schuuring, a BCG partner and co-author of the report. “These methods may have served marketers well ten or more years ago, but today’s marketers need to be much more data-driven.”



When selecting new products and services, consumers rely more on advocacy from people they know and trust. As consumers are becoming more digitally savvy and increasingly impatient with intrusive or irrelevant marketing messages, personalization is a key differentiator, the report points out. Ad tech is enabling more personalized and targeted advertising.

BCG finds that personalized advertising could constitute 80% of digital marketing budgets within three to five years, and will increasingly penetrate traditional media as well.

Ad properties that allow for video insertion are rapidly replacing display ads. Data and analytics encourage test-and-learn experimentation and ad purchasing through automated platforms and auctions.

The most advanced digital marketers are analyzing abundant consumer data — media data, customer relationship management data, app usage data, and more — to better understand where individual consumers are in their journey, what they are looking at, when they are looking, where they are located, and how they are responding to specific advertising messages. 

To gauge the transformative potential of digital marketing, BCG and Facebook worked with consumer goods companies to apply digital tactics to specific business challenges. These companies focused on access to real-time data to inform their campaigns, engagement in long-term, omnichannel relationships with consumers, and flexible approaches to gather real-time feedback from customers.

The results? “For the initial pilots we conducted, companies reported a variety of positive results, including a 30% increase in marketing ROI, a dramatic reduction in acquisition costs, and quantifiable gains in app usage and customer engagement,” stated Diederik Vismans, a BCG principal and co-author of the report.

1 comment about "Are Brands Keeping Pace With Consumers' Rapid Shift To Digital?".
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  1. brad berger from aim high tips, May 17, 2017 at 11:50 a.m.

    I agree people especially outside US want something more from their brand other than a dumb 30 second commercial. They need great content that makes people know they care and help people have better lives. My does the trick and is for sale. And although I know it is worth more than $30 billion I would take less. However most people in advertising and marketing and venture capital are too lazy to read. If you know how to read and are interested this explains it all
    Note the powerpoint loads very slowly - take a bathroom break as it loads Brad

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