There are two digital marketing disciplines that excel in prospecting potential audiences without relying on user intent triggers: Programmatic Display and Paid Social. These disciplines invariably use contextual, behavioural, probabilistic and deterministic data to predict intent, and then send the 'right message, to the right user, at the right time'.
Yet there is a new trigger - reality - which can drive awareness and consideration across target media channels by delivering a personalised message to consumers without the need for prior knowledge of a product or brand. In line with advances across the Internet of Things, 2016 will herald increased blurring of the offline and online domains, changing the way in which media is bought across all channels, with a particular emphasis on Digital Out of Home (DOOH) and mobile.
Companies such as TVTY are an offline-to-online data bridge for media buying platforms. Simply put, they take reality-based triggers like weather, share price, temperature or pollution to drive strategic promotion of products and brands relating to those triggers. As an example, should the pollen count in Cardiff spike, TVTY could send a signal to our demand-side platform (DSP) so we can promote more anti-allergy products in that location to users that will inevitably want them.
The upshot of this technique is manifold; on the one hand is a standard 'if this then that' capability, whereby sales are driven in an area requiring a solution to a problem. But that is only the beginning - if we begin to think about ways in which creative can be dynamically optimised using real-word triggers, then user personalisation also becomes possible without the traditional reliance on deterministic data or prior user engagement.
Additionally, TVTY offers a TV content mapping capability. If a TV ad appears across any one of 600 television channels globally, we can index that content and then use it as the basis for a 'second screen' campaign, targeting a user's mobile device based on the probability that they are viewing online content on their smartphone simultaneously to their TV experience.
For example, this capability could be brought to life if we tracked the theme tune of 'The Great British Bake Off' and used it as a trigger to increase the promotion of our client's coffee machines across our food-oriented, mobile display network. Moreover, with a partnership agreement in place, the creative could reference the television programme and offer a special discount if a purchase is made within the programme's air time.
Furthermore, 2016 will undoubtedly see the introduction of hashtag trend analysis being used as a trigger, which then will follow the introduction of news triggers. When humanitarian crises strike, such as Nepal's Earthquake, advertisers like the Disasters Emergency Committee could launch a fast-response appeal for funds, with the creative matching the information delivered in the news.
With such technologies, the stage is set for greater dialogue between what the world needs, and the ability for advertisers to react to those needs - cross-media and in real time. Advertisers will learn to listen more, instead of competing to shout the loudest.