Tribal DDB’s Gunning: Brands Must Adapt to Real-Time Marketing

In an opinion piece posted on Fast Company’s coCREATE site, Tribal DDB agency CEO Paul Dunning exhorts marketers and agencies to get serious about adapting their strategies to make use of real-time data. The key question:

Given that there is now an understanding of audiences in near real time, why are marketers struggling to act on this valuable trove of data?

Among the obstacles he cites:

  • most brands plan media budgets far in advance
  • the complexity of the chain of players that must work together to make real-time marketing a reality
  • the inability to “nimbly push through creative”

The solutions he offers:

  • Swift approval processes for creative
  • Involve legal from the start rather than trying to circumvent them
  • Build “buffers” into budgets to allow for on-the-fly tweaks and/or new campaigns

I had a conversation today with an agency executive who shared several of the same concerns and issues. Creative, in particular, is a huge bottleneck, he said. Technology can help marketers and their agencies find opportunities to do real-time marketing, but creating the creative is still the domain of humans, who can only work so fast.

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