What Does Blockchain Mean for Marketers?
This blog post was originally published on Linum Labs.
With all the hype around cryptocurrencies in recent times, it’s no surprise that blockchain — the technology underpinning various digital tokens — is becoming more and more of a household name.
As most individuals know by now, blockchain was originally created as a framework to facilitate the transaction of Bitcoin, however, its role as a secure and decentralised database soon saw its potential extend beyond the realm of digital currency.
Today, it is responsible for disrupting the status quo for all manner of industries, and while some believe the technology amounts to nothing more than hype, many believe it stands to redefine the world as we know it.
One sector that is realising the endless possibilities blockchain has introduced, is marketing.
Here, we’ll be discussing who’s cottoned on and what benefits or pitfalls they’ve experienced, and what the impact of blockchain holds for the marketing industry.
Who’s Leading the Pack
Because blockchain was devised for cryptocurrencies, and the wide acclamation of Bitcoin, Ethereum and the like, it has helped introduce blockchain to the mainstream. It’s clear to see why finance is at the top of the list for industries using blockchain.
The reason that blockchain, a decentralised ledger, operates like a “vault” is to ensure that no one else can access, embezzle or steal. Minimising the risk of theft and fraud of money will not only decrease crime globally, but also have a positive ripple effect on many other industries as most individuals and businesses use banking services on a daily basis.
Where Marketing Fits In
“Because it is its purpose to create a customer, any business enterprise has two — and only these two — basic functions: marketing and innovation.” — Peter Drucker
In some ways, blockchain will create entirely new solutions to the challenges that marketers face, while other applications of the technology will add to existing structures by making it more reliable and easier to trust. Regardless, in any business — in which the primary aim is to gain customers, and marketing and innovation are the main functions — blockchain technology could improve it.
1. Influencer Marketing
One of the biggest marketing trends of the year is influencer marketing, which is fast on its way to becoming a $10 billion industry.
Influencers have the ability to drive change in awareness, improve engagement and increase sales, but they are often overlooked as ineffective due to the metrics that they’re being held against. This is why it is so important that brands are measuring influencers using the right metrics.
If blockchain can make the banking sector transparent, anything is possible.
With blockchain, brands will be able to discover the true value and reach of influencers, measure the influencer’s effort and the business’ ROI, as well as identify fake followers and bought engagement.
Essentially, it will reduce the number of influencers, but the most authentic and effective influencers will remain.
2. Online Ads + Pay Per Click (PPC)
We all know how incredibly difficult it is to measure the exact accuracy of our online advertisements. How can a brand tell if they received thousands of new website visitors and potential customers from an ad or if they’re just a victim of online ad clicker fraud , where bots or people are hired to click online ads all day?
Blockchain is about to change this.
Because the technology is encrypted and transparent, brands will quickly and easily be able to tell if the people viewing their ads are part of their target audience or not. This can save millions of ad spend every year.
3. Customer Experience (CX)
A customer’s first introduction to any brand is how it’s positioned itself. If a customer falls in love with an advertising or marketing strategy so much as to buy the product, and is then disappointed in the quality or experience, that results in a customer you can never win back.
With the transparency of blockchain, customer’s will soon be able to see their desired purchase go through every stage of the buyer cycle.
This means customers will see where the product is made, who’s handled it, whether it’s faux or authentic, thereby placing complete power back into the hands of the consumer, while enhancing their customer experience.
Where to Next?
If, in today’s age of digital transformation and innovation, customer experience is at the core of it all, then blockchain has a crucial role to play in the marketing industry. Not only will it add value to marketers by helping to solve their challenges and connect with the right customers, but it will also help the average consumer who is bombarded with ads, brands and mental noise on a daily basis.
Blockchain has the potential to disrupt our world in many ways and across a multitude of industries, and marketing is certainly one of the most exciting. Its impact on transparency will bring a renewed sense of authenticity from influencer marketing, to how money is spent on online ads and social media.
Whether you think it’s a buzzword or the next big thing, blockchain is undoubtedly one of the most talked about topics in recent memory, and if its promise proves to be as monumental as its hype, then tomorrow’s world just became that much more exciting.
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