LIVONIA, Mich.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Valassis, a leader in intelligent media delivery, shares 2018 predictions including the borderless shopping experience, continued growth in big data and emergence of artificial intelligence (AI) across the marketing and retail landscapes – all important to influence consumers.
The marketing and retail landscapes experienced immense disruption throughout 2017. Several announcements from Amazon – including the unveiling of a futuristic grocery store and the acquisition of Whole Foods – began changing the way marketers and brands view the e-commerce and brick-and-mortar spaces. Additionally, while Black Friday online sales reached record levels in 2017, in-store results decreased less than 1 percent year over year, helping alleviate some of the fear around the demise of brick-and-mortar. And, AI experienced momentum in both the marketing and consumer landscapes, with the continued development and use of chatbots, in-store shopping assistants, smart home speakers and more.
With these recent trends in mind, what will 2018 hold for marketers and retailers? Valassis’ leaders weigh in:
Consumer experience will be paramount as their borderless shopping
“Consumers will expect even more value from brands, restaurants and retailers – getting access to relevant savings, convenience and an easy shopping experience. It will be critical that marketers improve consumers’ shopping experiences – online and in-store. This also means they need to have a consumer-centric approach to marketing – blending first-party and third-party data to reach, engage, influence and activate consumers.”
– Curtis Tingle, Chief Marketing Officer, Valassis
The abundance of data challenges marketers to drive relevancy in a
fast-paced, disruptive industry.
“We’ll see the continued growth of data, stemming from Internet of Things (IoT) devices, expanding media options and the low cost of storage to the point where marketers may feel overwhelmed. The expansion of data engineering teams, more sophisticated data mobilization, and the continued growth of analytics, data science and AI tools – that will become the norm rather than the shiny object – will help guide marketers. As innovation continues, change will be constant, markets will be disrupted and consumers will have more options and want more control. Marketers and advertisers may face an additional challenge as consumers become more hesitant to share PII data unless brands can better provide well-defined value propositions.”
– Greg Green, Chief Data and Analytics Officer, Harland Clarke Holdings
AI and chatbots evolve, continuing to grab headlines in 2018.
“We expect the AI market will continue to evolve as advertisers increasingly understand how the technology can fit into their customer engagement plans and consumers seek more engaging and convenient brand interactions. A prime example can be seen with Valassis’ chatbots which empower brands to have direct, automated conversations with customers 24/7/365. The key is to deliver relevant messages and engagement through this new media (chatbots, or voice recognition devices) as part of a holistic consumer-centric approach that includes audience understanding, targeting, delivery and measurement. Next year, marketers will test and learn even more in order to integrate these programs naturally and effectively into their omni-channel initiatives.”
– Pehr Luedtke, Senior Vice President, Marketing, Valassis Digital
Valassis is a leader in intelligent media delivery, providing over 58,000 clients with innovative media solutions to influence consumers wherever they plan, shop, buy and share. By integrating online and offline data combined with powerful insights, Valassis precisely targets its clients’ most valuable shoppers, offering unparalleled reach and scale. NCH Marketing Services, Inc. and Clipper Magazine are Valassis subsidiaries, and RedPlum® is its consumer brand. Its signature Have You Seen Me?® program delivers hope to missing children and their families. As wholly owned subsidiaries of Harland Clarke Holdings, Valassis and RetailMeNot, a leading destination for digital savings, are partnering to connect retailers and consumers through meaningful digital, mobile and print promotions.