Why Brands Need to Find and Harness the Humanity in Ad Tech to Reach Consumers

IPG Mediabrands is showcasing digital partners at Dmexco

As marketing technology evolves and proliferates, brands need to create authentic, relevant human connections or else everything's just meaningless data. Whether it's providing a friction-free experience for television viewers to interact with ads or making in-app shopping more rewarding, it all starts with dynamic human understanding.


        Chad Stoller

This is why at the Dmexco 2016 conference and exposition in Cologne, Germany, IPG Mediabrands will be hosting live demos of a variety of technologies and platforms designed to create greater resonance between marketing opportunity, application and consumer relevance. Only by embracing these and other exciting tech innovations can we drive greater business outcomes while providing meaningful, enjoyable consumer experiences.

Let's face it: Despite the never-ending evolution of digital devices and solutions, we're all racing to keep up with consumers' insatiable appetite for the Next Great Thing. Unless brands adopt a humanistic, people-first mindset—making every effort to ensure that our first impression turns into a quality relationship—it's a race to oblivion.

At our Partner Pavilion at dmexco (Hall 7, Stand C049-D048), we are pleased to showcase companies like Ad Mobilize, Grand Visual, Innovid, Layer, Placed, Samba and Yext. Space doesn't allow for a complete recitation of their efforts to help brands discern and deliver human desires and unmet needs, so I will focus on Innovid, Layer and AdMobilize.

The folks at Innovid have set out to improve the over-the-top TV viewing experience while driving brand engagement with dynamic, personalized TV-to-mobile technology. Viewers can input a mobile phone number with their remote control to receive extra content from connected TV ads, such as a digital coupon or website address, via text or SMS. The result: Brands reach audiences at scale across multiple living room devices and glean unified analytics to measure and improve connected TV video ad campaigns. This represents a whole new way of thinking about video that values the viewer—rather than the consumer—as the most significant part of the equation.

Layer provides a rich, in-app messaging platform that boosts consumer engagement and retention while gradually building customer relationship management profiles. It can be as simple as someone using a retailer's app to ask about the availability of a particular style or size of a jacket. Once a response is provided, it can stimulate further communication that yields more information to flesh out the CRM profile. Alerts bring people back to the platform, generating more useful information. In short, better messaging equals more successful transactions and more happy users.

AdMobilize describes itself as a "computer vision company making sense of the physical world" and connecting it to the online grid. Its AdBeacon camera is a pioneering "plug and measure" real-time audience hardware and analytics device. In plain English, imagine you are holding a brand promotion event in a tent festooned with ads for the brand. How do you know whether visitors to your tent are engaging with those ads, at the very least, and whether they actually enjoy them? AdBeacon logs this information so that ad placement can be optimized on the fly while it gauges the percentage of positive reactions. The metrics it captures include: Gaze thru Rate (Ratio of Total Impressions vs. Views), Dwell Time, Peak Times, Ethnicity, Gender, Age, and Emotions.

What all of these solutions have in common is that they attempt to apply the lens of humanity to solving marketer challenges and, in the process, foster brand dynamism. While the pace of ad tech may never be fully aligned with that of consumer demand, brands that seek the guidance and actionable intelligence exhibited by our partners at dmexco 2016 will certainly have a step up on their competitors.

Chad Stoller is IPG Mediabrands evp and global innovation director.