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The new face of advertising

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By Brian Yatich

The advertising industry is globally changing. Advertisers are looking for different new ways to reach on the target.  TV, Radio and Print advertisement money globally are diverted to digital mediums and social media networks like YouTube.  The Kenyan market is no different. An increasing number of brands are investing in digital markets. Over the past several years, from almost obscurity, digital media has gained significant traction offering an ideal channel to reach multi-device, multi-channel consumers.

According to a data-driven intelligence firm, eMarketer, Facebook and Google control much of this spend. Facebook’s ad revenue is projected to reach 42.39 billion U.S. dollars by 2019, up from 3.15 billion U.S. dollars in 2013. Google’s global online advertising expenditure is projected to surpass 335 billion US dollars in 2020.

Overall, Google controls 40.7 per cent digital ad market, followed by Facebook with 19.7 per cent. The report further indicates that Mobile will be the main driver of digital’s growth accounting for over 70 per cent of digital of total media outlays.

“Advertising has reinvented itself over and over. This is why it is absolutely essential to brands to know how to adapt to the trend at the same time. Brands are now looking for the real return on their investments,” says Munene Githira, Orac Branding CEO.

Githira says that industry is mature now, noting that most brands and businesses are taking advertising seriously by setting budgets and seeking the right consulting ad agencies to run their campaigns.

Digital advertising and marketing assists marketers and advertisers to target consumers with laser-focused precision. Brands are no longer limited to just demographics but can target the exact audience likely to purchase based on thousands of lifestyle, personality, behaviours, and purchase intent segmentation variables.

Munene Githira, Orac Branding CEO

Githira 26, believes that on average, brands in the country spend between 5-7 per cent of their advertising budget in digital advertising. For some brands, the percentage is as high as 30 per cent.

 “They are aware on the types of audience they wish to advertise to, which can encompass segments across demographics such as age, gender, social standing, to geographic. Africa presents a good playing field for digital marketing, owing to the big growth of fintech, some of the opportunities is the fact that more international brands and organizations are setting base in Kenya,” he says.

Digital marketing, comes with other aspects such as performance tracking as per the and the campaign goals throughout the entire campaign process.

With Technology having disrupted almost all the sectors of the economy, Githira notes that the future of advertising is fully programmatic and brands are now more than ever concerned about reach, customer engagement and the brand’s full visibility.

“The Artificial Intelligence revolution will play an increasingly significant role in the way that advertising is conducted. We will see even more accuracy in predicting which internet users are more likely to purchase a product, across display. Mobile, places heavy reliance on data, and the access to information on user location, usage, app history, browsing data and more. This will lead to better usage in ad targeting capitalizing on all available information. This way, it will be able to fix and inhibit issues such as ad fraud, transparency and authentication,” he says.

“The foreseeable future,” he indicates, “will likely see the unification of programmatic ad campaigns across a variety of formats. TV, Radio, Out-of-Home, are already being used in programmatic, and VR, connected home appliances etc., are soon to follow. Voice assistants (think Siri, Alexa and Google Assistant) are becoming better every year, and holds marketplaces where advertisers should be present.”

To stay ahead of the game, Orac Branding has built its business in accountable marketing – that tracks all marketing and advertising efforts to the point of sale by helping and making sure brands connect with its customer’s journey.

“When we got in the market, there was a big challenge between brand owners and Ad agencies because what the agencies promised is not what played out for the brand owners. We decided to disrupt that by developing a curriculum for Digital Branding Training for our clients,” he says.

 “Training for clients is free and takes 90 minutes. This training has become one of the most exciting part of our job. Just to see the look on our clients faces when they get to learn so much about digital branding,” he says.

Orac Branding has a team of 12 and has successfully run ad campaigns for organisations such as Women in Business Kenya, PROSAK, SMEFest, Open Business Africa, Salvon Africa, and Expodium Africa & Raha Solutions among others.”

The digital advertising space does fall short of challenges. Githira points Ad fraud, which is fraudulently representing fake online advertisement impressions, clicks, and conversion rates or data events in order to generate revenue as one of the challenges.

Another challenge is what Gathira calls the “The Client Brief vs The Client Budget.” This happens where a client wants to run a big-successful ad campaign with a very limited budget. Moreover, digital advertising involves a huge spectrum of constantly evolving platforms.

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