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What does 2015 hold for online marketing?


Marketers have definitely grasped the power of programmatic to drive brand objectives and are now starting to look at new ways to reach their relevant audiences and further strengthen their ROI.

A recent report has forecast that global ad spend will increase by 4.9% in 2015 to reach £350 billion. While I think we’re sure to see an increase in spend on display, social, mobile, video and even TV, there’s also a few other trends which I think will be driving the industry forward in the next 12 months.

The move to a multi-touch attribution model

2015 will be the year marketers will start to challenge the limitations of basic attribution models and move towards a Multi-Touch Attribution (MTA) approach. MTA allows marketers to look at the entire marketing mix and to track how a consumer interacts with different media and the subsequent actions they take. MTA also enables marketers to see how different marketing channels interact with one another and how sales attribution should be fairly weighted.  All in all, it looks at the whole picture and in 2015 marketers are going to come to understand the benefits of this holistic approach.

Coming together as an industry to tackle ad fraud

There’s no denying that in 2014 the topic of ad fraud reached new heights. Everyone within the industry has had an opinion on the topic and most haven’t been afraid to point the finger of blame. What has been good is that more companies are now focussed on tackling this issue and in 2015 we should see even further action taken to ensure advertising spend isn’t going to waste. What’s now needed is for the industry to come together and collectively discover ways to bring to a halt this problem. 

Increasing spend on programmatic TV

TV remains an untapped opportunity in the industry because of a lack of understanding of how to target key audiences. Imagine if we were able to use the data obtained from what people choose to watch on playback services to identify insights into their interests and intentions. We would then be able to use this information to serve them an ad relevant to their preferences, rather than just a general ad seen by everyone. In 2015 marketers will realise the huge potential available from using programmatic technologies for TV advertising and spend on this area will increase.

Brand campaigns to have guaranteed audience

At the end of last year we predicted that 2014 was going to be all about programmatic branding and at Rocket Fuel we’ve definitely seen our customers utilise our services for brand campaigns as well as direct response. For brand marketers it’s important to be able to reach a target audience at scale, however, traditional brand campaigns have often used a ‘spray and pray’ approach. In 2015 brand advertisers using the latest ad tech offerings will be able to ensure that the audience they are reaching is entirely made up of their target market – saving on wastage and most importantly, increasing ROI.

The last 12 months has seen the industry realise the real potential of programmatic buying and embrace the technology to drive campaigns. The next year is set to be another exciting one as new technologies allow for even better campaigns across more platforms and therefore, even better results.