Q. TM: What should marketers have done in 2015 that they need to jump on in 2016? (For example, you’ve been saying programmatic is going to be big.)
A. BRUCE: Programmatic is big and marketers are there now, yet marketers missed out on more always-on campaigns (triggered, site-based) and more de-siloing of marketer organizations to create flexibility and agility within their decision-making and execution processes.
Q. TM: How should marketing teams look to handle this workload? (Slim and agile? Larger and diverse, in terms of skill sets and personnel? All automated?)
A. BRUCE: Marketers need to continue the process of de-siloing of their organizations to create flexibility and agility. They need flexibility in their martech stacks — integration, not customization. They need tools that promote better workflow across online-offline channels, platforms and media types. Holistic strategic thinking about the customer journey and marketing agility is the new black.
Q. TM: What are some ancient mindsets and budgeting priorities that need to go? What new ones should replace them?
A. BRUCE: Silos are old. Touchpoint-agnostic marketing is in, which can’t be done in a silo. Digital media may only take you so far — don’t over-shift. Follow the consumer — they will not follow you.
A. BRUCE: That it is a positive forecast, in-line with the long-term bull market in equities and U.S. growth. That media consumption will continue to shift digitally. That the convergence of apps, payments and the Internet of Things (IoT) is going to push boundaries and pressure marketers and their agencies to increase experimentation.
That M&A is going to continue on a 2015 rate (not value, as several large deals pushed total deal value) and valuations will not always go up (or why unicorns have to think about going public).