The future of advertising: A sneak peek!

The future of advertising: A sneak peek!
Suresh Dinakaran - chief storyteller at ISD Global

By Suresh Dinakaran

Published: Wed 18 Sep 2019, 11:23 AM

Last updated: Wed 18 Sep 2019, 1:29 PM

 What should "advertising" look like in 2020 and beyond? What should we do now to move towards that future? These are some questions that crowd our everyday artery. Advertising has always been a combination of art and science, and technology is now becoming a third variable. These are un-ignorable forces of change that are throwing unabated challenges to the status quo.
Exponential advances in technology:
With IoT, AI, Machine Learning, etc, we now have a deeper real time understanding of things, people and situations. These bring along outsized and unprecedented responsibility for what we do with that knowledge.
Empowered and skeptical consumers:
They have a desire for personalisation; they seek choice as tools to make better decisions. Individuals come with lives, aspirations, challenges, family and communities; they want to be worthy of respect and you need to earn that trust.
Media disruption and redefinition:
One way has changed to two-way, what was static is dynamic, stationary is now mobile, passive is sensing, one-dimension is immersive, and visual has turned multi-sensory.
Culture, society and our world:
Straddling many a divide across health, income, digital, education, equality and tolerance, climate and sustainability.
Measurable business models:
A heady mix of customer-driven/holistic models, including co-creation, open-innovation, network orchestration, competitive value, transformation to full service provider, emerging market innovation engine, and shift to digital and network business models.
The verdict
1. Traditional mindsets, including those about advertising and marketing, must be challenged and potentially changed. There is also great benefit when switching to new vocabulary: Try saying initiative instead of campaign; switch content to substance, etc.
2. Shift focus from media mix to portfolios of all touch-point orchestration. The path to purchase is not linear anymore; operating in a sliver is not serving the purpose.
3. Leverage the power of content (RAVES: Relevant, Actionable, Valuable, Exceptional and Share-worthy) and context (MADE: Multi-sensory, Audience-driven, Delivery across platforms, Environment and location sensitive) to deliver a compelling brand purpose.
4. Always be in beta; in an adaptive experimentation mode to foster innovation, learn faster and better, attract and retain better talent to hoodwink competition.There's no shortage of screens and impressions, but there's a shortage of high-value connection points between brands and consumers.
You have to create effective engagement with the consumer that gets them to buy. As the brilliant Bob Hoffman puts it: "If you want to die an imbecile in advertising, don't pay attention to art, literature, history, science, anthropology or nature. Pay attention to the Kardashians."
Semper vigilans (stay vigilant)!
 Suresh Dinakaran is chief storyteller at ISD Global, Dubai and managing editor, BrandKnew.

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