Blockchain technology supports Bitcoin and may lead to future financial disruption. You may have heard about or read an article discussing blockchain technology. Most likely financial in nature: decentralized ledgers, cryptocurrency, smart contracts, and so on.
However, the blockchain is disrupting more than just the financial sector. The blockchain will transform digital marketing and advertising as well. Both disruptive and beneficial, it is essential for marketing and advertising professionals to keep a close eye on this growing peer-to-peer network.
Not convinced the blockchain is here to stay? Here are a few statistics that may change your mind:
- Blockchain startups raised $290 million in 2016
- Financial and tech firms invested around 1.4 billion in blockchain
- The average investment in blockchain projects was $1 million in 2017
- The global blockchain market is estimated to be valued at $20 billion in 2024
How does all this affect digital marketing and advertising? Well, consumers will ultimately gain control over their purchasing data and personal information.
“Blockchain will allow consumers to take control of the ads they see and, hopefully, give advertisers a modern, sophisticated means to producing high-quality leads,” Brian Hart explained in an Inc. article on the matter.
Purchases, delivery, measurements, and value of marketing and advertising efforts could all be impacted due to blockchain-based protocols. This may make consumer data costly for marketers and advertisers, but it could also lead to better ROI.
Let’s take a deeper look at how blockchain technology will transform the future of digital marketing and advertising.
1. More Trusted Ad Buys
Current online advertising can be tricky. Digital marketers and advertisers know that it can be nearly impossible to get accurate data. You always need to ask yourself, “How many of these clicks are actually real?”
Bots or people hired to simply click on ads all day can inflate statistics in order to increase rates. In fact, over $7 billion was lost in 2016, because of bots. This makes it challenging and costly to get a clear picture of your ad buys.
Blockchain technology can change all that. Transparency and security is at the core of the blockchain with each transaction (block) created, verified, secured, and enforced on the chain.
How does this impact digital marketers and advertisers? Since the chain serves up better transparency and security, marketers and advertisers can quickly identify target audience views. This could potentially save companies millions yearly.
For instance, AdChain, “an open protocol on the public Ethereum blockchain,” provides digital marketers and advertisers with end-to-end transparency with a decentralized whitelist and audit trail. This gives them control over first-party data.
2. Cut the Ad Buy Process
Traditional digital marketing and advertising usually has a middleman where the ad buy process is done. However, blockchain technology could cut out the middleman altogether.
In fact, publishers that cut out the middleman, blockchain or not, can increase the cost per impression (CPM) from one dollar to around five. “The publishers that are setting the ground rules right now are making higher CPMs,” Michael Greene, an analyst at Forrester Research told CNBC.
With middleman ad buy processes out of the way, marketers and advertisers can reach target audiences directly, paying audiences to view their ads. For instance, you can use Basic Attention Token (BAT) to make your digital marketing and advertising more efficient and effective.
This platform lets you exchange tokens between publishers, advertisers, and users on the Ethereum blockchain. Advertisers can shell out tokens based on a users mental engagement, increasing ad ROI by creating a better consumer connection.
3. Consumer Profiles Directly from Customers
Blockchain technology can revolutionize how digital marketers and advertisers build consumer profiles. Instead of getting bits and pieces of consumer information from various sources, you can get all you need in one place, the blockchain.
How? Well, since consumer blockchain transactions are decentralized, traditional means of obtaining consumer data will be pretty much impossible. You would think this is bad news for digital marketing and advertising.
Not so much. Instead of getting varied data, you can pay consumers directly for their purchasing data and personal information. Potentially costly, but think of how much ad spend is wasted on campaigns with not so accurate data.
One of the biggest benefits behind paying consumers directly is that they are willing to serve up their information on a silver platter they are most likely already interested in the company, product, or service you are marketing. This will give you a very accurate target to hit.
4. The Blockchain is Highly Transparent
Digital marketing and online advertising come down to one thing, confidence to buy. This is what every advertiser and marketer aims for in a campaign. It is also a big reason why influencer marketing has a high ROI. When consumers hear about a product or service from a trusted influencer, they have very little reservations about making a purchase.
In a sense, blockchain technology serves up that same confidence to buy. Not so much as a personable recommendation, but as a ledger of history and data for a product or service.
The digital ledger of the blockchain lets customers get a transparent view of every product, from manufacturer to seller.
For example, if a consumer wants to buy an expensive brand-name luxury product, they can access the digital ledger for that product and see if it is, in fact, the real product. This gives consumers ultimate control, provides an amazing user experience and helps digital marketers and advertisers a path to instant customer confidence to buy.
Some brands are leveraging blockchain transparency to even increase the level of marketing in unprecedented ways. For instance, fashion brand Babyghost implemented blockchain technology to tell a story about their products.
“This event illustrates that fashion brands, especially high fashion brands, need to keep the consumer in mind and give them more than a product,” Sonny Lu, BitSE COO said. “The customer wants to know that the connection between them and the brand is real and that their products are real.”
What’s Next for Digital Marketing and Advertising in the Blockchain Future?
Blockchain technology is still relatively new. It will be interesting to see how it will affect the future of digital marketing, advertising, and many other industries. There is a lot of emphasis on providing the best user experience in current digital marketing efforts, and blockchain could achieve this, almost flawlessly.
Better user experience, highly targeted ads, fewer pop-ups, higher security and encryption for customer and company data, and consumers will take the wheel when it comes to interacting with brands.
The blockchain does have consumer heavy benefits, but marketers and advertisers can adapt and increase ROI significantly. How will you use blockchain technology in your marketing and ad efforts?