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Source: Media Post as of 16-07-2020

If the past four months have shown us anything, it’s that the unprecedented impact of COVID-19 on our economy has left brands and advertisers working to reconcile two paradoxical urgencies: now is the time to introduce new technologies to accelerate digital transformation, but now is not the time to make big risky bets. Technology promises efficiency and efficiency promises cost savings, but implementing new technology into a business’s established processes can be risky without proper planning and resources (including money and personnel).

Here we analyze the most recent Bombora intent data across the MediaPost 500, looking at advertising trends involving brands’ interest in complex technology.
With the pandemic fast-tracking digital transformation with brands, interest in artificial intelligence (AI), particularly “Artificial Intelligence for IT Operations (AIOps),” has been on a steady rise since mid-May (see above). While digital technology and AI have been hot topics of discussion for years, adoption is still slow. Until now. These technologies can be applied immediately to solve pressing issues and both brands and agencies are taking notice.

Another area that has the attention of brands is “Deep Learning” which has spiked twice in the past three months. “Deep Learning” is a highly advanced and cost prohibitive subfield of machine learning that structures algorithms in layers to create an “artificial neural network (ANN)” that can learn and make intelligent decisions on its own. It’s what’s powering the most human-like artificial intelligence and could create major opportunities for businesses willing to embed ML into their decision-making systems.  

While making bets on new or untested tech, marketers can find confidence in applying data to tried and true advertising channels.

Coronavirus dealt a serious blow to the outdoor advertising as the world went indoors. However, we have seen a slight uptick in searches around “Outdoor Digital Displays” and “Outdoor Digital Advertising.” While many restaurants, bars and other establishments in the U.S. remain closed, this search data reinforces the need to evaluate out-of-home behavior to help marketers understand the full spectrum of behavior shifts during the pandemic.

The key is finding a balance between cautious risk-taking and proven marketing tactics. The common denominator is, as always, data: applying it quickly, thoughtfully, and in a way that reflects the fluctuating changes of an audience’s needs and behavior.  

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