Lately, online marketing and advertising are at their peak. With the latest technologies and advancements, online ads have never been more powerful and popular. The reach, customization, and personalization of these ads is what makes online marketing so powerful and far-reaching. With the dawn of blockchain and cryptocurrency, the marketing and business communication sector has also been significantly impacted. The effect of blockchain on the marketing sector goes beyond just banking and financial transactions. While those two areas alone are vital, blockchain’s impact goes beyond currency and finance and affects marketers of all products and services.
In this article/
- Advancing transparency
- Display advertising
- Evolution of data collection
- Digital asset security
- Blockchain-enabled targeting
Blockchain and its Influence on Digital Marketing
Blockchain as a whole has the potential to address a couple of underlying faults in marketing and advertising. In particular, the transparency of supply chains and advertisement fraud. According to stats in 2018, advertisers lost an estimated $19 billion to fraud, according to Juniper Research. As a result, some of the biggest headliners in tech are turning to blockchain for solutions to fight that, striving to build transparency by creating a simple financial settlement for digital media exchanges. While others in the trade are looking at how blockchain can be used in the purchasing process itself. Allowing parties to trade directly using their cryptocurrency.
While digital display advertising is fetching good results for marketers there are still some serious flaws in the display of online ads. From the side of ad agencies, they can be expensive and complicated to understand and hard to manage. Furthermore, the record is almost completely controlled by two for-profit organizations: Facebook and Google. From the side of users, the issues with digital ads are clear as day. Display ads in particular mobile & app advertisements are intrusive, disturbing, and can drain your mobile device’s battery and consume bandwidth.
Blockchain can solve some key problems for brand marketers and ad agencies. Namely, authentication and provenance of products and services. This authentication is highly valued by consumers, especially Millenials.
For example, take a luxury shoe: A single-chip embedded can store information on the factory and the name of the artisan who hand-stitched the lining, as well as guarantee the origin of all the component pieces. The same principle can be applied to engines and mechanical equipment. For example, you could prove that the bolts and nuts come from sources of the highest integrity and standards and pinpoint every single person involved in the process of manufacturing.
Evolution of Data Collection
Accessing the internet is simple. Anyone can do it by going through traditional gatekeepers: ISPs and web browsers. Companies and organizations can learn almost everything we do online, from the sites we surf to the things we buy, the articles we read and the people we talk to. Believing the notion that these gatekeepers will always provide fair access to the web and do right by their consumers is great, but the truth is far worse as proved by recent headlines. A live example of this is how Mark Zuckerberg has become the fall guy for a problem that stretches far beyond Facebook: our personal data can easily be purchased and sold to advertisers and marketers.
Blockchain could possibly be a solution to this problem. A great case study for the data privacy problem is Blockstack, a network built on blockchain that promotes itself as “a new internet for decentralized apps.” Blockstack’s network is built on blockchain-verified signatures. This is why your personal data remains with you only, instead of existing on servers controlled and owned by your application. With Blockstack visiting a site or using an app is like inserting a key into a lock, you keep a personal copy of your data with you at all times, you place it in the lock when you need to, and you take it out when you are done. However, there’s no running log kept of who used the lock and when. Blockstack is just one example, there are several additional projects in the crypto scope aiming to accomplish a similar goal as well.
Digital Asset Security
With the rise of MP3 and digital music and media came in a high rise to piracy in the late 1990s. The music industry made numerous efforts to counteract it and for a while, both sides were at a standoff. The modern solutions to such piracy are streaming services such as Deezer, Soundcloud, Spotify, and Apple Music. The model, however, is still quite flawed. Artists and musicians are only fractions of a penny per stream of their songs. Additionally, the complexity of licensing in the music industry means streaming service payouts aren’t always provided to the right party.
Here comes in Blockchain. The technology could be the next step in the evolution of the creative industry’s digital economy. Projects like Tao, Po.et, and Steem were created with this intent. Imagine if musical artists, filmmakers, videographers, and photographers could offer their work to a massive audience without paying an intermediary like YouTube, Bandcamp, iTunes, or Shutterstock for exposure and security.
Identifying ownership of data, services, and products is sacred ground for marketers as it enables pinpoint targeting and reduces waste in related marketing efforts. For instance, a near-field communications (NFC) tag stitched into a luxury handbag and connected to an app can enable a brand to push messages to the bag’s owner, who is connected to the blockchain to that particular item. A bag owner who has opted-in can be invited to exclusive events with her bag acting as the ticket for that event. The owner could also receive discount codes for new products when the manufacturer wants to provide them.
Blockchain-enabled targeting can also be used with particular locations, perhaps driving into a new store to redeem a discount voucher. This combination of offline and online operators gives marketers a powerful tool for ad placement.
It is vital to note that all the above-stated possibilities are just predictions and ideal cases. Considering how new the blockchain technology is, its evolution and its full impact can not be accurately predicted. But if even one or two of the commercial blockchain uses come to a realization, it could significantly change the way that marketers go about drawing buyer attention. The impact of blockchain on marketing will range from web advertising, mobile marketing, and app advertising as well. As a result, marketers using these tools can be more confident in their quality and effectiveness. The growing blockchain sector indicates that 2020 could mark the start of the real adoption of blockchain tech in marketing and the wider business environment.