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Report: Top 10 Global Predictions for Digital Media in 2012
Report: Top 10 Global Predictions for Digital Media in 2012
By: Sahil Shah

Digital Media is growing and the growth is being experienced looking at how Mobile Phones, Internet, Computers, Tablets, etc. are quickly becoming a part of day-to-day lives. Technologically challenged countries are becoming far more advanced. Back in 2011, one did not think about a lot of digital advancements that happened. Some predictions came true and others surpassed expectations. Come again, this year, a report by Millward Brown & Dynamic Logic on Top 12 digital predictions for 2012 are pretty much in sync with what the team here have been thinking upon.

Here is the list of Top 10 Global Digital media Predictions for 2012:

1) Brands Playing Social Games

The Gaming Industry has been evolving since time immemorial. The idea is very simple and it is to motivate and engage people by applying game design techniques and mechanics to non-game situations. Points, level progression, badges, achievements, power-ups, virtual currency, quests, puzzles, loss aversion – all of these game concepts are involved in this growing trend. Coming to brands that will survive in the world of Gaming will be the one who are social. The true winner will be the first massive multi-player multi-brand multi-channel real-life game system where you and your friends will combine purchasing habits to unlock branded benefits.

2) Mobile Money Wallet

Cell phones and Wallets are the two things if combined then can be used to make life easier. This is excatly the same thing that is happening in recent times. In 2012, we will only see rise in Mobile Payments that will ensure that the mobile phone is the hub and center of our busy lives. This is just a start as post a couple of years we’ll be using phones as identification – license, passport, office pass - as keys to unlock our car and apartment, as boarding passes and subway tickets– all from a simple tap.

For this reason, brands and marketers need to pay more attention to mobile and continue to leverage the medium to connect with consumers in a compelling and meaningful way.

3) Social TV

Social tools, technologies and platforms that enable people to interact with TV programs will explode in 2012. We will see innovations that allow people to engage with shows, reality shows as well. With the explosion of social media, TV will become a bigger echo chamber for interaction and engagement for both viewers and TV networks. Throw in a bit of Twitter, a backstage blog, a handful of hash-tags and an interactive app or two, and you have all the ingredients to put TV on social steroids. Not only will social media allow users to interact with TV shows as they never have before, but TV producers and networks will use this data for ideas and inspiration.

4) Online Video on TV

In 2012, the consumption of video will begin to take on evolved forms in new contexts. As the adoption of increasingly consumer-centric, multi-faceted home entertainment technology catches on, video that had previously been consumed online, including YouTube videos, webisodes, and even professionally curated content by established media companies will begin to “reverse-migrate” to the living room.

Still in its very nascent stage, but the foot is already in the door. As companies like these continue to pursue innovation toward creating the quintessential multimedia hub, you can bet that content agreements, distribution channels, and strategic partnerships are being created behind the scenes to supply the hardware and software that consumers will find appealing. 2012 is just the beginning.

5) Mobile Marketing - More Social & Location Based

The future of mobile marketing will be intertwined with social and location-based marketing. It’s obvious that mobile, by nature, allows brands to talk to the right people at the right times in the right places, and brand. Existing geo-social apps like Foursquare, Shopkick and Yelp will still hold strong importance for Marketers. Retailers will experiment more with geo-fenced mobile marketing with companies like Placecast. Social buying companies like Groupon and Living Social will become more app-focused and provide push content and alerts on real-time local deals. Brands will create more of their own apps that tap into both geo-location services and social networking.

6) Mobile Applications

The top applications will always be on top in the coming year as well. They will be very difficult to be deposed considering the huge following and trend they have already created. If marketers want to go the angry birds way then they will have to look beyond Apple’s app store or the Android market place.

But even though app usage will consolidate around those at the top of the charts, there will be a great demand from first-time smart phone users exploring their new device.

With increasing opportunities for video, and a blurring of the boundaries between mobile, online and TV, the ads targeting will be far more interesting. At the same time HTML5 will continue to drive down the cost of cross platform development as well as allowing apps to be downloaded directly from publishers, freeing them from the restrictions of iTunes. Applications will be used consistently across devices; not just mobiles and tablets but desktops and TVs too.

7) Social Media will Continue to Grow

With Facebook having more than 800 million people, it certainly has access to a lot of social data which draws insights to produce their future products. Twitter’s functionality as an information-sharing platform means it also captures a wide variety of additional data. Mining those platforms for explicit, implicit, and analytic consumer data will become a core measurement approach for brands. This kind social graph that has access to a lot of social aspects of the users will give rise to new brand value generation across many categories and many platforms.

As adoption of social media becomes more widespread in the general population, marketers will also simultaneously increase the role of social media in their broader media mix. Social media will function as a more accurate barometer of consumer opinion. From there, we will be able to extrapolate more broadly to measure the impact of that media on a brand.

8) Sharing is Caring

In today's scenario, online traffic will be content driven and not platform defined. Social Networks themselves have become a very integral part of today's online experience of a user. The future of social networking lies in seamless sharing which in effect makes the content viral for people to consume. We see the beginnings of this trend in the “sharing” buttons that are on many web pages. It is estimated that 50% of the world’s10,000 largest websites now include such links, leaving the other half to realize that the real power of the web is in sharing.

Providing the necessary conditions for shareability will become a basic prerequisite for any successful online outlet; it is in everyone’s interest that sharing is made easy. The ability to measure shareability will establish itself as a useful way to determine levels of influence and to better understand how information travels. Views of certain content will eventually be measured alongside its shareable power to determine its impact.

9) Free Flow of Information?

Yes. The future of mobile and digital content will be made to pay for which currently has a free flow. Most consumers will not accept to pay online for content. Therefore, regulators will need to take a closer look at the actual conflicts in the marketplace as they continue to define the permissions paradigm for digital data sharing. Chief among monitored practices will be the ability to use an individual’s digital footprints to assign a commercial score that can be used to evaluate that individual’s eligibility for certain products and services.

10) Realtime will be Key in Online Advertising

With the increase in intelligence across campaign optimization on different platforms, there will be a increased demand for real-time campaign insights as well. The coming future will be the one consisting of live bidding and realtime statistics on campaigns running online. Industry players such as market researchers and creative agencies will rise to the challenge laid down by real-time purchasing of media, and create solutions that can provide real-time ad evaluation and real- time creative recalibration.

Successful players will be those who learn to merge real-time data from media plans with insight, analytics, and creative evaluation into a holistic approach to truly optimize their online advertising on the move.Intelligent demand-side engines that can collate real-time media plans, brand insight, direct response analytics, and creative recalibration will emerge and drive decision- making on the who, what, when, and where of online advertising.

The futuristic trends are defining the way content will be shared and consumed online. This also marks the fact that changes will certainly see some light of the day with the growth that is being targeted. The easiness and convenience of the medium is also supporting the fact that it will be the fastest growing across verticals. The point in question is that how quickly it will grow as well as spread across the industry with the above trends ingrained with it. Do let us know in the comments section as to what you predict for the digital industry.