While Google and Meta may have reported slower growth in ad sales, let’s note that that growth is only lower than predicted and not negative. The global economic outlook is resulting is conservative consumerism, and given that, it is but natural that businesses will also tighten purse strings in such an environment.
Link branding to performance
The consumption bias towards digital is here to stay. Thus, the spend and growth will adjust itself as the market improves. Another important trend in the light of Google and Meta’s latest numbers is the still high growth of TikTok.
The shot video platform’s growth in adoption rates as well as ad sales is higher than for Meta or any other digital media. This too has had its role to play in the numbers reported by Meta (if not Google).
The search business of Google will get stronger. Businesses will invest in ad channels that not just help build visibility and branding, but also contribute to lower marketing ‘funnel’. ‘Brand-formace’, which is counter intuitive to most traditional marketeers, is what businesses will chase.
A lot of innovation and properties will work at the intersection of brand and performance marketing. For example, ad agencies treat brand work as different from what’s used in performance marketing, which is more tactical, direct and RTB (real time bidding) driven.
Emphasis will now be on high quality brand work that can also yield in performance and be used in lower funnel marketing.
Role of AI
The fundamental functions of marketing - audience targeting, relevant messaging, CRM and conversion — all have lot to gain from AI. For years, Big Data has been discussed without significant business value generation. The advancement of AI changes that.
Organisations sitting on data lakes of different kinds, will deploy machines to learn about this data and create not just business intelligence but also production outputs (in case of marketing) through AI.
The application of AI in marketing has been seen in programmatic buying, chatbots, recommendation engines (ecommerce, Netflix, etc.) and in CRM for customer segmentation.
AI and creativity
The launch of OpenAI platforms like ChatGPT and Codex has taken the game many notches higher. AI is being actively engaged in the creative process, which includes copy writing and designing. Platforms like Copy.AI, Dalle, Mid-Journey are all being experimented with. It is expected that AI will perform all functions that require standardised skills, leaving human intervention for higher order functions.
Noteworthy is a platform called Daydream.AI which can take any brief and create a creative idea for Instagram, YouTube or experiential marketing.
In fact, in just two years, I expect most of the production work to be done by AI. Which means businesses will focus their efforts in data, insights and analytics.
Adoption of AI in marketing will be the single biggest gamechanger the industry has seen since the advent of digital advertising.