A creative guy talking about data is perhaps best described as an oxymoron as traditionally creativity and logic have always been at loggerheads. Creative teams have been known to work in silos where they would spend days even weeks ideating and coming up with a campaign based centrally on a creative insight. But that was year 2000. Its 2020, creativity and data go hand to hand. Infact data is the biggest weapon creatives have in their arsenal.
Today we are catering to a global consumer with local idiosyncrasies. Brands are no longer talking global, but talking regional and individualism which is leading to hyper-localised unique tailored experiences and personalization. Infact personalization, is no longer a marketing cliché but a reflection of the brand genesis. If we take a look around the best brands nowadays are by “the people, for the people”. Twitter is a news channel by the people for the people, the transport service by the people, for the people is OLA; travel and boarding that is by the people, for the people is Airbnb. And the common thread for all of these brands is data driven technology.
Data led communication can not only help gather deep insights around the audiences but also identify the best channels and ways to reach out to them. One such successful example is of the Spotify India ‘There’s a Playlist for That’ campaign which was a data led outdoor campaign – a hyper contextual campaign which did 1) Geographical social listening then 2) Sentiment analysis and 3) Offered personalized playlists.
Another important aspect of data mining is the ability to do predictive analytics which can measurably help forecast consumer behaviour or outcomes of marketing efforts. This will allow brands and campaigns to be more precise with their messaging by focusing on specific demographics with a targeted message for a precise purpose. A great example of this would be how Google can predict where the next epidemic will break out based on a simple geo-location search of incidents such as common cough, cold, and similar symptoms. By aggregating the data, they can also predict in which direction it is likely to spread. This is a prime example of how data and technology can help products accurately map where to be.
Another example of this is one of my favourite pieces of work for the Marriott Reward Club – ‘M Live’. Whenever someone tweets or uploads pictures of themselves at any of the 6000+ Marriott properties across 120 countries, the M Live team using what’s known as geofencing technology, which uses GPS or other digital markers to provide a virtual boundary around a certain area, can pin point the exact destination from where the tweet/picture originated and reward the customer in real time. This is an amazing effort of data-first location based social technology.
Advertising’s future lies in mapping human behaviour through data and creating relevance. The most important future start-point is understanding the human journey – and when we say journey, we don’t mean generic segmenting according to age, social class and but as narrow as segmenting the group age wise, location wise and understanding their behaviour.
With data as the platform, the creative canvas has become much larger, where one can experiment with branded utility, creating new platforms, building ecosystems or even product innovations.
But the platform to create innovative solutions lies in the visage of creativity and data. The key to successfully create and innovate would be defined by the ability to collect, deduct and apply insights which are gathered from the users. As I always believe – “The only way to predict the future is to build it yourself!”