Ambitious new data strategies will begin coming to the fore next year

By our News Team | 2021

Media trends report from consulting firm Kantar aims to assist media owners and brands to build their plans for 2022 and beyond.

Marketers need to take direct control of their data in a cookie-less world, with ambitious data strategies that go beyond reach and frequency. This is according to Kantar, the international data analytics and brand consulting company.

In its newly released Media Trends and Predictions 2022 report, the company says concerns over digital effectiveness could see a rebalancing of online and offline ad spend next year.

The report is aimed at helping media owners and brands to build their plans for 2022 and beyond.

Nuala Harris-Morele, Managing Director for sub-Saharan Africa, Media Division, Kantar, comments: “The pandemic has caused a viewing revolution. With screen-time at an all-time high, we all must adapt to stay ahead of the changes in media consumption and ensure we offer Africans the content they want to see, in the format that best suits the context of 2022.

Media trends

Photo by Ketut Subiyanto from Pexels

“While we’re living in the time of digital diversity, remember that it complements TV beautifully, so avoid duplicating the same content across each channel as they’re likely to have seen it before.”

Focused on five key areas, Kantar experts predict a range of shifts for the industry as it grapples with the pandemic era:

1. Context reset for life under Covid-19 and beyond
The uplift in media consumption on connected devices in the home – such as TV, online publications, audio and video streaming – received a healthy boost. Advertisers that used these channels during ‘stay-at-home’ measures have seen audience growth, but there’s a rebalancing of media underway as markets recover, and a return to a diversified media mix as the associated pandemic measures ease in many markets. Don’t forget the importance of that balance, as we need a variety of channels that perform their different brand-building and performance objectives to maintain effectiveness and efficiency.

2. Transparency in video-on-demand (VoD) viewership will transform media’s most dynamic market
The transparency created as more actual VoD viewing figures are published at a programme level will generate a host of transformations. Content owners and producers will command higher licensing and carriage fee negotiation rights than before. Streaming platforms for sport and e-sports will gain more traction with fans. Platform consolidation will continue, driven by the need to offer more (and better) content bundles to lure new viewers in a crowded marketplace. Sole subscription offerings will become scarce. The volume of deals will accelerate on 2021 levels as platforms, operating in increasingly overlapping ecosystems, will continue to merge and form partnerships.

3. Experimentation as we see the last of the tracking cookie crumbs
For media owners and advertisers, the two-year cookie reprieve from Google represents an opportunity to experiment with new approaches. A serious recalibration of the commercial internet is now underway, as brands and agencies are experimenting with hybrid data strategies that fully encompass privacy, purposefully blending their owned consumer data with panel-based sources and other high quality – and fully consented – third-party data such as socio-economic, past-purchase behaviour, attitudes about other brands, and more. Expect a move towards contextual advertising in targeting, with investment in direct integration-based measurement to ensure comprehensive campaign measurement through a range of publishers.

4. Time for competitive intelligence and first-party data experimentation
The lack of competitive intelligence in a cookie-less world means advertisers will need to find a new system to turn data into insights in an easily accessible way. Brands that combine creative and contextual insights as effectively as possible, using real-time intelligence to understand audiences and competitor activity, will drive growth and remain agile. Brands will experiment more with first-party data enrichment as they look to unlock the power of their own data and build better relationships with consumers. This speaks to the beginning of the end for uncontrolled tech-giant expansion, as concerns over the sheer scale and competitive advantage of the tech giants will grow, possibly prompting a shift in tone from governments who want to better regulate and tax the most powerful businesses.

5. Performance media and the marketing balancing act
Expect a rebalancing of spend across performance media and brand-building campaigns, with more advanced cross-media campaign measurement and in-flight optimisation to boost efficiency as advertisers demand performance measurements on a platform-comparative basis. Marketers will need to mitigate concerns around the effectiveness of both e-commerce and performance marketing channels as the largest e-commerce businesses seek new growth by heading out into the real world and making investments in brand-building media, with performance media and brand-building media settling into more of a balance in the coming years.

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