A Key Year for Tag Management Adoption
Over the past few years we've seen a lot of changes in digital marketing — the rise of social networks, new ways to conduct more targeted campaigns, and better tracking and measurement tools. In addition, we've seen a steady rise in the adoption of tag management systems as a way to optimize how campaign tags are deployed and managed and how they capture a full view of the customer journey to conversion. As these trends continue to develop, I expect to see even more changes to how companies approach marketing and advertising in 2012.
1. Tag management adoption will go from 15 percent to 50 percent amongst top retailers this year.
2. Data will become the most crucial tool to driving strategic direction and real-time decision making. Brand advertisers will rely more on technology to manage their media. Agencies will stick with their bread and butter, offline media. With real-time bidding on display ads, all marketers need now is a creative strategy. The execution and delivery will easily be managed internally using technology.
3. We'll see greater adoption of privacy products allowing consumers to opt out at the tag level due to new European Union privacy legislation coming in May. There will also be a need for country-by-country controls.
4. This will be the year of complexity management as marketers gain the ability to manage the complex and vast array of new services and tools that have become available. The last couple of years have seen an explosion of technologies and services (e.g., data management platforms, exchanges, demand-side platforms, ad verification, online customer service, attribution management, retargeting), all of which deliver advertisers greater efficiency in their online marketing activity.
In the coming months advertisers will start to make sense of all these new services — not only in their minds but also technologically — by using platforms like tag management to house and integrate them to build a single view of their online audience, delivering a managed approach to actually acting on that view.
5. Attribution will become a prominent mode of reporting. As such, advertisers will plan their spend and optimize their campaigns based on attribution analysis of all their customers’ responses to marketing and nonmarketing channels (e.g., direct to site, online chat, call center). Using this, we should see the bidding of search and display start to work in harmony.
In general, display has the most to gain as full-channel attribution analysis will demonstrate that banners do work as an upstream channel. This will redefine development in the display sector away from its current uncomfortable chase for the last view. Also, clients who start to examine the mix between paid and natural search will find "target busting" efficiencies in both — if Google lets them.