Mastercard's Rajamannar On The 'Tsunami" Of New Tech Barreling Toward Marketers

Marketing has been disrupted in recent years by technological innovation that has altered the landscape dramatically in a short time. But according to Mastercard Chief Marketing and Communications Officer, Raja Rajamannar, you better fasten your seatbelts because the industry is about to get slammed with a “tsunami of new technologies” that will transform it completely.

Rajamannar kicked off the 4A’s Decisions 2022 conference Tuesday with an address laying out some of the change that he sees coming. He recently penned a book called “Quantum Marketing: Mastering The New Marketing Mindset For Tomorrow’s Consumers,” that outlines his vision in detail.

Ads as we know them may go by the wayside, he said, because they’re annoying, intrusive and unengaging for the most part. “Consumers hate ads,” he said, as evidenced by the 600 million ad blockers that consumers have installed on devices.

“The way we communicate has to change,” he added. He cited research suggesting that 70% of consumers are not “loyal” in their personal relationships. And if that’s the case, he asserted, why would marketers believe consumers are loyal to their brands regardless of what they say in surveys or other research?



Cultural shifts will have a profound impact on marketing as will advances in neurosciences. “Consumers don’t understand their own minds,” he said, noting that they often act subconsciously.

The average consumer is bombarded with about 5,000 commercials a day, much of which don’t get processed, he said. And people process media differently, he noted, which was factored into Mastercard’s brand revamp two years ago. The new logo adapted different shades of red and yellow and did away with the brand’s name. The company also created a sonic ID, which Rajamannar believes will become an increasingly important marketing technique.

Separately, a panel moderated by Chrissy Hanson, Global Chief Strategy Officer, OMD Worldwide discussed the impact of streaming on the video planning and buying process. All agreed that the growing number of streaming options adds layers of complexity to an already complex process. Still, the shift to on-demand advertising will continue to grow. The bottom line for brands remains how best to drive business growth.

Vinny Rinaldi, head of investment and activation, Wavemaker, noted one obstacle to fully understanding streaming audience behavior is that different TV brands have their proprietary black boxes chock full of viewing data but that there is “nothing across the TV brands to aggregate it all.” He likened the streaming ecosystem to “going back to the walled garden approach.”

Another big challenge in the streaming environment, the panelists agreed is parsing out incremental audiences. Another challenge: getting all that data “upstream” and fully into the planning process—it’s not there yet.

One opportunity: allow consumers to spend more time with branded content and commerce platforms and not just 30-second spots.

The 4A’s Decisions 2022 conference continues online today.

Next story loading loading..