Digital Transformation and its effect on marketing

Source: Business Insider 05-14-20, W&V 05-13-20

Over the last couple of years digital transformation has been a much talked about topic. Some adjusted and pivoted faster than others, while others are still just talking about it. The current situation is exposing companies’ errors and miscalculations, which means many companies are now trying to ramp up to make up for lost time. Razorfish President Josh Campo compared digital transformation to having to build a plane while you’re flying it. 

Marketers are often the first movers in businesses to undertake transformation. One current example is Pepsi and GM who are planning to pull out of upfront advertising contracts for Q3. Media Post estimates a pullback of 25 %, which is historical compared to the previous decrease of 2 – 5 %.  With the reduction of TV spend, ad dollars will likely be diverted to more flexible digital channels. A big advantage of advertising on digital platforms is its flexibility!  For example, the easy real-time stopping and starting of spending.  

Marketers need to build an implementation program with strong foundations and smart data strategies to see success. Laura Chaibi an experienced marketing consultant points out that “Many built marketing technology stacks, using a lot of data they do not own”. New data privacy laws and their limits on third-party data and cookies bring a wave of new strategies and marketers have to rethink the way data is used and how it can support their work.  

Often internal bridges need to be established. Digital transformation is a team effort and historically data analyses and marketing haven´t worked that strongly together. Strong allegiances must be built internally to transform from the inside out, as well as from the outside in. Companies also need to know which data to collect and how it should be structured. The right data involves questions around the business use case as well as the right people to architect the solution. A new form of team collaboration has to happen.  

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