As Artificial Intelligence (AI) machine learning programs have grown, so there is a rise of voice recognition. AI-based products (Amazon Echo/Alexa and Apple Home) are growing rapidly, and are increasingly becoming household names. In 2017, almost 20% of online searches were conducted through voice search and that number is set to reach to 50% by 2020. With more users relying on just their voice to search, marketers will have to adjust how they are currently building out their SEO strategies in 2018. Moving forward voice recognition, AI has also led to the rise of chatbots, which will also continue to focus on a more personalized experience for consumers.
Augmented Reality (AR) is a hot-ticket item as Facebook and Snapchat grow (much of AR’s growth can be attributed to the rise of Snapchat Lenses and Facebook Stories). A recent eMarketer study found that, “AR development has plodded along in the shadows of VR. But AR has assets that VR doesn’t: It is practical, it can run on mobile devices that people already own and there is little downside to trying it”. eMarketer also plan that by the end of 2019 AR users will top 54.4 million, accounting for 16.4% of the US population, or nearly one in five internet users. From extending live experiences to offering compelling interactions brands can attract consumers by developing apps that let them see products in their very own life.
Live-streaming has grown as an emerging trend as brands are paying more attention on personalization and transparency. From live interviews to special announcements, viewers watch live-stream videos 3 times longer than pre-recorded videos. Facebook has also found that one in five of its videos viewed is live-stream. Live-streaming continues to add a layer of authenticity and allows for consumers to feel connected to the brand. As more platforms begin to explore this trend, it is set to become more defined and clear in 2018.
Programmatic OTT & CTV
Over-the-top (OTT) video and Connected TV (CTV) are both changing the way viewers consume video and television. OTT/CTV is expected to see over 193 million US users by the end of 2017 and by 2021, it’s viewer penetration will approach ¾ of all internet users. Simpli.fi stated that “In 2018 significantly more OTT and CTV inventory will be bought and monetized programmatically. Mobile will continue to be the go-to place for advertising and consumer engagement, but growth in OTT and CTV inventory means localized advertisers will have new opportunities with highly targeted video advertising in 2018.” As OTT and CTV accelerate in 2018, advertisers are also important
Third-Party Data Verification
As important as third-party data verification is, its modeling often does not include 100% accurate information. Digiday has stated that, “Data partners are paid based on their number of transactions, and not upon their accuracy. While advertising’s tech capabilities may have gotten much more sophisticated in recent years, priorities haven’t changed as quickly.” As marketers, we are constantly on the hunt for scale, but we need to take a step back and remind our partners why this data is so important in developing our brands. We rely so heavily on this data to advance our strategies, creative messaging, and building our overall audiences, that as Haidee Hanna, VP of Marketing at Resonate stated, “we should begin to demand more out of our data partners” this coming year.
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