5 Trends Every Agency & Brand Leader Should Know

June 17, 2018

The job of a modern marketer gets more complex by the day. The wealth of data we have at our fingertips enables us to tell more personalized and relevant stories, but B2B buyers and consumers alike are increasingly wary of branded communications.

It’s only fitting that at the time when we have all of the tools we need to finally take our marketing to the next level, most buyers would prefer to tune us out, citing a lack of trust as their reasoning.

So, what is a brand to do? And how can brands succeed in this data-rich, trust-poor environment?

These will be some of the questions circling about at the 65th Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, kicking off this week in the south of France. In celebration and in preparation for this convergence of advertising leaders, we’ve compiled a list of what we think should be top of mind for attendees and their colleagues at home.

Read on for 5 trends that can help your advertising succeed this week, this year and beyond:

Thought Leadership

Most B2B buying decisions start with a prospect consuming your content. Be it an ad, a blog post or otherwise, how you show up, what you have to say and the positions you take about industry topics matter. Placing value in collateral that demonstrates thought leadership is critical.

Marketers far underestimate the value that thought leadership can bring to the table. While only 50% of B2B marketers believe their thought leadership builds trust in their organization, 83% of B2B buyers find thought leadership indispensable when making a purchasing decision.

As brands, buyers look to us to set the tone and the agenda in our respective fields. Showing up as an expert can help you build trust with your audience and position your brand as an authority.

Touchpoint Consistency

As much as we’d like to believe it, your audience isn’t here just to receive your marketing messages. In fact, they’re actually receiving something like 5,000 of them each day. From you, your competitors and everyone else for that matter.

Get this: Only 14 percent of people can remember the last ad they saw; just 8 percent have any idea what company or product was associated with that ad; and only 3 percent think the ad actually had anything to do with them. Ouch.

To stay top of mind, consistency is key. The only way to drive ad recall is through pattern recognition. So, you must identify a pattern that works for your brand and double down.

First to Mind

Being first to market doesn’t matter. What matters is being first to mind.

It’s no secret that there’s a direct correlation between awareness and market share. So investing in advertising that raises the profile of your brand among target audiences can help your brand stand out from the rest.

You Are Where You Advertise

Increasingly, context in digital advertising is important. The ads partners you choose become extensions of your brand in good times and in bad.

It’s important that you keep brand safety in mind when selecting where to advertise. LinkedIn can help you reach the right audiences, the right ways in the right environment.

Start With Who

Most marketing today is not customer-centric. And most B2B personas are informed by guesswork. Not ideal.

Because truly customer-centric marketing is radically individualistic, you need to ensure that every message you craft is driven by data. In this vein, no marketing strategy is complete without a comprehensive understanding of your audience.

For B2B professionals, the right audience insights start with LinkedIn.  

Bringing It Home

As agency and brand leaders, we hold the keys to the kingdom. We are tasked every day with one of the greatest jobs in the world: Telling stories on behalf of the world’s most influential and powerful brands.

But we also have great responsibility to ensure that the brands for which we speak are showing up in a way that resonates well with our target audiences. Communicating authentically, adding value and using our data in intelligent ways can help us get and stay ahead.

Learn more about the B2B trends that matter here.