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#BizTrends2018: Delivering UX with soul

Programmatic has entrenched itself in our digital world and we all know it is not going anywhere, but we will see more channels being added, more capabilities and all being underpinned by artificial intelligence (AI).
Mike Carter is partnership director, Mirum, and IAB SA head of council for Media Innovation.

Artificial intelligence


This machine learning will define and target your intended audience. As it evolves, and we address the programmatic issues that surround click fraud, viewability and brand safety means we are “growing up”.

The use of ‘moment scoring’ on platforms such as Rocket Fuel enables us to view a customer’s unique journey across all touchpoints.  Helping us understand the users browsing behaviour, build attributes, assess the propensity to convert against the KPI and deliver personalised dynamic creative in the perfect moment.

Creative has had the life squeezed out of it over the last few years and we are seeing the rise of cloud-based services enabling dynamic creative production and optimisation in a responsive and device agnostic environment.

Curated, authentic and native content on the rise


We see data signals being activated against creative from weather, time, location and audience segments. And hopefully a more creative use of these huge digital and social channels and networks will help brands rise from the clutter. The “one size fits all channels” days are coming to an end as more curated, authentic and native content will receive more attention. If we don’t shift we may end up living in Keitchi Matsuda’s hyper reality world.

In the wake of this digital land grab and all that has occurred over the last few years, branded platforms and digital assets are being revisited by the rise of a new breed of SEO rockstar’s who are finding fault lines running through the architecture and assets and seizing opportunities to audit these well-known platforms and fix them.

Our agency view on where we are heading for 2018 and beyond is an overriding mandate of “UX with soul”. We all know entire industries, not just companies are being disrupted and this is now becoming woven into our everyday lives.

New forms of distribution coupled with access


New forms of distribution coupled with access rather than ownership. More efficient ways of demand getting the supply it needs. Everything seems to be heading towards more decentralised, borderless, P2P, secure yet unregulated.

The Blockchain has moved out of currency and into an array of industries and we will soon find it showing up in digital media. Because of web and mobile web, brands are creating a scenario where people are becoming increasingly impatient, as their expectations are increasing at a faster rate than most brands and businesses are able to deliver on. We believe making stuff people want is a human-centred product and service design, as opposed to making people want stuff that is built on pure persuasion.

Map the customer’s journey


So how can we better design our products and services around the varying needs and contexts of our customers? You need to map the customer’s journey. Increasingly, customers choose products and services based on the quality of the experiences they have with them at any particular moment.

To prevent those experiences from breaking down, and to help organisations navigate cross-channel complexity, you need a map and specialists to guide you on your journey. This is the trend that will reshape and impact 2018.

Create digital experiences


Creating digital experiences differs from analogue and real-life experiences in three fundamental ways:
  1. They're made of 1s and 0s that don’t need production run setups and changes and occupy no shelf space.
  2. Experiences are instantly distributable, in real-time.
  3. Each and every interaction with the experience is trackable which gives us a window into how people are engaging.

These three factors afford businesses the opportunity to create experiences that can constantly evolve and improve. Experiences will become more immersive.

Great strategists will articulate multiple routes and have a clear rationale for why they've chosen route X over Y. Great strategists will be able to hold both the business goals and user emotional states in balance and envision how both can work together without compromise while evaluating each scenario and deliver “UX with soul”.

About the author

Mike Carter is partnership director, Mirum, and IAB SA head of council for Media Innovation.
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