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We see three key trends that are set to disrupt marketing and eCommerce in 2018. Ultimately these trends will enable brands to drive greater business impact via their presence online, dramatically changing how brands engage with consumers.

Access to buying signals and the intention economy

Consumers can now take greater control of their personal data with the introduction of GDPR in May of next year. The next step will be for consumers to share their own personal data with brands as well as their intent to buy a particular product or service – what we’re referring to as the intention economy. This will enable brands to move from making generic offers to instead engaging with consumers with an offer that’s tailored to them at the very moment that they are looking to purchase. This will create a major shift in digital marketing as advertisers move away from a cost-per-click and cost-per-mention to a cost-per-acquisition advertising model.

Anytime, anywhere

In the UK millions of consumers use comparison sites to find, for example, the best mobile phone or insurance deal on offer - sharing personal data as well as their intent to buy. The data analytics software is available today that will enable brands to respond with an offer even if a consumer leaves a comparison site and continues to search for a product or service elsewhere online. This creates additional opportunities for comparison sites and brands to convert consumers into buyers and drive additional revenues. Again, as with the ability to access the buying signal with the rise of the intention economy, ‘anytime, anywhere’ access to a consumer’s buying signal will completely change how brands engage with consumers as consumers continue their journey online.

Emergence of collaborative CRM

Combining a consumers’ ability to take greater control over their own personal data as well as share their intent to buy a product or service with brands, and brands combining this information with their own customer relationship management (CRM) databases will totally disrupt CRM. The technology to do this is now available. Collaborative CRM, as we’re referring to it, will be the next big thing in customer relationship management. It will transform business performance marketing and tools adding the customer buying signal, for example, into the mix. Collaborative-CRM puts the customer front and centre and makes it easier for brands to respond with relevant offers when consumers are looking to buy.

Laurence John

Laurence has been developing, marketing and financing advanced products in aerospace, mobile and early stage venture environments for the past 25 years.