Trends: New Avenues for Consumer Connection

As technology advances and preferences change, advertisers are always looking for new ways to reach their consumers. Stay ahead of the curve by understanding these growing trends:

  1. Online Gaming is Reaching a Huge Audience

    Almost two thirds of the households in America have at least one member who spends three or more hours a week playing video games.[1] Online games like Fortnite, which now counts 78 million players per month, are growing at an unexpected rate.[2] Competitive video gaming is being fueled by this increase in players. One popular competitive video gaming streaming site, Twitch, averaged more than 1.3 million concurrent viewers a day over the last year.[3] Players and spectators both offer significant audiences—and forward-thinking advertisers are taking notice. Gillette began a global partnership with the ESL (Electronic Sports League) in 2017.[4] Fortnite added Thanos, from the movie Avengers: Infinity War, as a playable character in a promotion for the film.[5]

  2. Technology is Personalizing the In-Store Shopping Experience

    As bricks and mortar stores face increased competition with the internet and each other, smart retailers are investing in technology that promises to personalize the in-store experience. Walgreens recently announced a partnership with Cooler-Screens, a startup aiming to revolutionize the way consumers interact with the refrigeration aisle. The Chicago-based company manufactures refrigerator and freezer doors which can display everything from the most enticing pictures of the products behind them to digital advertisements for specific brands. Smart data collection allows the doors to optimize their displays based on factors such as the weather or the consumer standing in front of them, and send real time inventory reports as products are purchased. Walgreens has partnered with 15 brands it carries and started testing the technology in a Chicago store in November. Five more pilot tests will be live by the end of the month.[6]

  3. Advertisers are Engaging Cable-Cutters Through Streaming Services

    More than 765 million consumers use subscription-based streaming services each month, and that number is only growing.[7] As these services improve, many consumers no longer view them as a supplement traditional cable—they view them as a replacement. Reaching consumers through streaming services is becoming increasingly important. This type of advertising took a step forward after Goldman Sachs committed another $30 million to Innovid Inc., an ad-tech company that partners with Hulu, Fox, and Roku, and other streaming services. So far, the firm has created and delivered content for L’Oréal, Toyota, Bank of America, GlaxoSmithKline, and others.[8]

As technology advances and preferences change, brands must continue to innovate if they want to stay competitive. Whether they’re finding new avenues for connection, like online gaming and streaming services, or optimizing the consumer experience, identifying and catering to the specific needs and desired experiences of their customers can be the difference between a thriving business and balance sheet woes.