From updating the martech stack to brand safety, the big agenda for marketers in 2019 and beyond will always be about performance. We have collected predictions from the industry’s experts on the key topics for next year.

Expect to see issues such as the importance of aligning measurement with business goals, customer data platforms, trust and transparency, automated workflows and how to get ahead by understanding the new TV ecosystem.  

Chris Bennett, managing director EMEA, Pixability

We are seeing a shift in attitudes from marketers, thanks to the rapidly changing digital ecosystem and the opportunities it presents. Alongside traditional media, they have a whole new array of channels, played out on a wide range of devices, which are being fully embraced by the consumers they hope to reach. Whether it be TV, social or video, the question on every CMO’s mind is, ‘What is the impact of my investment by channel?’

As the opportunities expand, so media planning and attribution become more challenging, and in 2019, brands will be looking for genuine intelligence around the proof points of what each platform can truly deliver. Marketers will become more focused on outcomes and to achieve them will need to use technology and data to break down the silos that currently exist between campaigns across the different channels.

Harry Harcus, managing director UK and pan-regional, Xaxis

In 2019, as marketers continue to focus on tying ad spend to performance, they will want to move away from proxy metrics such as click-through rates to measuring success in terms of outcomes. Supporting brand marketers with custom key performance indicators that can be linked to wider business objectives, and ultimately organisational success will be essential to achieve and sustain growth.

Marlene Grimm, head of analytics, TVSquared

This year, TV performance analytics has continued to evolve – it now offers much more than just attribution. Marketers are now able to harness big data capabilities to improve planning and buying, measuring the performance of their TV campaigns in real-time, employing predictive analytics to take the guesswork out of TV buying, and implementing TV and digital initiatives in tandem. We have also witnessed significant advancements in the automation of TV planning and buying through the rise of machine learning technologies and integrations with solution providers.

For brands to continue to leverage TV as a performance marketing channel in 2019, marketers must start thinking about using these technologies to automate workflows that are extremely time intensive and prone to human error. This, in turn, will allow for faster, dynamic, and more efficient media decisions and aligns inventory to target audiences, maximise spend, and improve campaign effectiveness.

Peter Falcone, director of analytics EMEA, Flashtalking

We are only in the very earliest days of data-driven creative personalisation and technology has advanced beyond most marketers’ capabilities. As the industry catches up with the tech, so too will the recognition that utilising data to enhance creative performance is paramount. Once this identification occurs we will see a much-needed evolution in the way creative agencies deliver campaigns for clients, and connect effectively with the distracted shopper in 2019.

Lindsay McEwan, VP and managing director EMEA, Tealium

Customer Data Platforms (CDPs) stitch together event-level consumer data in real time – from multiple online and offline channels and devices – into a comprehensive customer profile that can be leveraged to form data-driven decisions across the entire business.

With consumers 23 times more likely to interact with – and six times more probable to remain loyal to – businesses that are customer-centric, we expect CDPs to become an essential part of marketers’ tech stacks to increase their marketing effectiveness and performance. We anticipate that, as brands compete to deliver the best customer service experience, the insights delivered by such tech will be critical in offering consumers personalised, targeted and convenient messaging.

Thomas Bremond, general manager, International, FreeWheel and Comcast Technology Solutions

Following a year of challenges – GDPR, brand safety, and measurement mainly – there is still plenty for the premium video industry to look forward to in 2019.

Tighter regulations following GDPR mean that an increasing number of advertisers are recognising the importance of premium, and the essential role it plays in providing trustworthy and brand-safe access to vast audiences worldwide. Brands are demanding access to high-quality and transparent ad spaces in which they can be assured maximum engagement and quality reach – and premium video consistently offers this.

We have already seen broadcaster alliances such the European Broadcaster Exchange (EBX) start to form across the globe. Further examples of collaboration between broadcasters, and with ad tech partners, over the next year will be essential in helping traditional TV offer scale and targeted reach, which is what advertisers want.

Such partnerships will help broadcasters to take advantage of the heightened demand for addressable TV and the opportunity to provide more affordable localised ads within national campaigns. In 2019, we’ll see an emergence of small and medium businesses becoming the next generation of advertising segments for addressable TV.

Giovanni Strocchi, CEO, ADmantX

As brand safety continues to be an industry concern across the globe, we are poised to take control of the issue in 2019. All industry players, including advertisers, agencies and publishers, must work together to find the solution once and for all.

The key lies in collaboration. While brands look to agencies for advice and publishers to provide the content they require, these parties need advertisers to really understand what constitutes a safe or unsafe placement for their specific brand. Agencies must build brand safety into their conversations with advertisers from the start – as early as the pitching process – to ensure safety becomes a fundamental consideration of all ad campaigns.

Brands require personalised brand safety to provide protection to their core brand values. Agencies and publishers must support this by selecting the right solution and avoiding problems in volume delivery. For brand safety issues to become a thing of the past, all players must discuss the problem and work together to address it. The topic has been a concern for too long and I believe 2019 will be the year the industry finally actualises the solution.

Gavin Stirrat, VP partner services EMEA, OpenX

After bursting onto the digital media scene three years ago, header bidding has become an integral and settled element of programmatic advertising. But it’s about to cause a stir again as the practice gains steam in video. Video is currently riding a continuous high – with UK consumers spending almost an hour watching video content each day and advertisers spending £1.6 billion on the format.

So, it makes sense that publishers looking to maximise ad revenue by leveraging header bidding technology. Doing so will drive competition and boost yield by offering desirable video inventory to a wider group of buyers. The rewards will be especially great if publishers utilise open source technology that enables to keep an eye on auction processes and prices.