Marketing trends that will dominate 2020

Emerging technologies are just the beginning. Look for shifts in the way we approach consumers, as well as a broader approach to CSR objectives and methods. Buckle up.

2020 mktg trends

There are many reasons 2020 shows unprecedented potential for marketers.

There’s the promise of rapid advances in AI technology, moon mining and even a glimmer of hope in reversing the aging process.

It will be the year when we see the new age of marketing move from proof of concept to established fact—and the results will be massive for those who get the jump on these crucial trends.

Basic marketing truths we’ve held since school must be rethought.

Now that computational processing power and data science techniques can simultaneously make sense of millions (or even billions) of data points, we will question concepts as basic as that of “target market.”

Instead of targeting a handful of personas, we will realize our potential consumers represent a constellation of diverse micro markets, composed of very different people who happen to share a similar need or desire. With all the data and creativity in our marketing arsenal, the barriers that prevent us from acquiring all audiences that we can responsibly and profitably identify, reach and convert will be removed.

We finally get that brands are way bigger and more powerful than we ever dreamed.

Historically, companies have sought to maximize their position and strength by working diligently to maintain a single brand positioning. This idea should be expanded: A brand may have a single position, but there are many reasons to believe in it.

Put another way, a product’s benefit doesn’t have to change from consumer to consumer. Instead, by matching the most relevant support point to a particular individual’s behavioral intent, we can maximize conversion without undermining an overarching brand message.

We’ve been taught that branding and direct messaging to individuals should be looked at as different marketing objectives, but when an organization can instantly communicate the right message in the right situation, based on whatever factors are most relevant—this false dichotomy can be put to rest.

We start to wield the power of new technologies and truths for the good of our clients—and the world.

Organizations and their agencies will be expected to contribute more to the world than ever before. Our ability to effectively communicate with ever-widening audiences will enable us to create more and deeper connections than we could conceive of even five years ago.

This not only allows us to truly maximize the reach and conversion potential of the brands we serve, but it also allows us to create dialogs around the issues that they and their consumers care about most—socially, politically, environmentally and financially.

In 2020, we will move irrevocably into what is conceivably the end game of marketing: a future in which a target market is a segment of one, where virtually every individual can be precisely targeted with highly relevant messages (albeit anonymously and with appropriate permissions).

This means executing at the intersection of data science and creative. To operate in this new world order, we need to recalibrate how all of our marketing disciplines adapt to enable the individualization (as opposed to personalization) of communications.

A version of this article first appeared on MediaPost.

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