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26 May 2023
Artificial Intelligence

The Future of Retail Media in 2023

Retail Media: the game-changing concept that has redefined the way brands connect, engage, and thrive in the ever-changing RetailTech landscape In its simplest form, refers…

Retail Media: the game-changing concept that has redefined the way brands connect, engage, and thrive in the ever-changing RetailTech landscape

In its simplest form, refers to the strategic integration of advertising solutions in retail environments, unlocking a whole new world of opportunities for brands to reach their audience when it matters most. Retail Media is comprised of onsite advertising, sponsored products, and video ads, as well as offsite advertising like display banners, social media ads, and TV ads.

Over the years, Retail Media has undergone a significant evolution, fuelled by technological advancements, shifting consumer behaviors, and the constant pursuit of exceptional customer experiences. From traditional in-store indications to immersive digital displays, Retail Media has evolved into a multifaceted ecosystem, blending online and offline touchpoints.

The market is growing fast. So much so that Retail Media spending has doubled in the past two years from $20.8 billion in 2020 to $40.8 billion in 2022. In addition, the US market is expected to reach $85.0 billion by 2026, representing 25% of the total digital media spend.

But what sets Retail Media apart from conventional advertising channels? Unlike its counterparts, Retail Media harnesses the power of first-party data and consumer insights derived from retail platforms. By leveraging this, brands can deliver hyper-targeted, contextually relevant messages that resonate with shoppers, creating meaningful connections and driving measurable results.

In this article, we will delve into the intricacies of Retail Media and how this branch of Retail Technologies will deeply impact the industry in 2023.

Elevating the Standards: The Compelling Brand Content Dilemma

In today’s dynamic marketplace, shoppers are now accustomed to immersive, visually captivating, and meticulously crafted brand experiences online, due to the implementation of Omnichannel strategies. As a result, the bar for customer experiences has been raised significantly.

Nevertheless, many brands find themselves struggling with a content deficit, having neglected the necessary investments required to keep up with this rapidly evolving landscape. 2023 marks a turning point, where brands are determined to bridge this gap and catch up on lost opportunities.

The challenge lies in securing budgetary allocations for content creation. Thus far, digital teams have struggled to find a metric equivalent to Return on Ad Spend (ROAS) that convincingly justifies the investment in content. However, 2023 is set to witness a transformation as brands embrace metrics such as Return on Content, aiming to legitimize an investment that has often been dismissed as intangible or difficult to quantify.

Leveraging AI: Balancing Efficiency and Creative Differentiation

The rise of AI tools presents a golden opportunity for brands to cost-effectively bridge the content gaps. However, as AI becomes more pervasive, concerns of an inundation of indistinguishable content and generic positioning are on the rise.

In this crowded landscape, brands that dare to invest in human-led, innovative content creation can truly set themselves apart from the competition. While AI certainly is linked to speed and efficiency, creativity in content generation is undoubtedly the differentiating factor that not all brands are willing to embrace. Take, for instance, the awe-inspiring campaign launched by It was undeniably a PR stunt, but the execution was nothing short of extraordinary. Moments like these require a level of creative thinking that AI, at least for now, simply cannot replicate.

Sharing Shopper’s Data: A Paradigm Shift in Advertising

As we delve into the realm of Retail Media Networks (RMNs), it becomes evident that three key factors are driving advertisers’ rapid adoption, as highlighted in Insider Intelligence’s Retail Media Perceptions Benchmark report published in 2022:

  • Traffic Scalability
    The ability to reach a substantial audience is crucial for advertisers seeking exposure. Retailers recognize the need to attract profitable advertising revenue, and achieving a significant audience size is key to their success.
  • Traffic Specificity
    Reaching the right audience is equally vital. Advertisers understand the value of precise targeting to ensure their messages resonate with the intended recipients. A focus on delivering high-quality traffic ensures maximum impact and engagement.
  • Audience Targeting Capabilities
    The ability to harness hyper-specific audience attributes and segmentation capabilities is a game-changer in the realm of retail media. Advertisers are now able to tailor their campaigns to specific customer segments, enabling them to deliver highly relevant content and drive desired actions.

However, one pain point remains the same: a limited audience size.

Managing a small media channel requires a significant investment of time and resources, making it a viable option only for the largest enterprise brands. The solution, then, lies in collaboration and partnership among retailers themselves.

By securely sharing anonymized first-party data in a centralized data pool, retailers can create a larger set of shoppers’ data and advertising inventory. This expanded reach will not only attract a broader spectrum of advertisers but also attract non-endemics, just as Amazon is currently pursuing.

Uploading first-party direct-to-consumer (DTC) shopper data allows brands to leverage anonymous shopper profiles, enabling the creation of advertising lists, audience overlaps analysis and even gaining insights into the lifetime value of customers through multiple sales channels.

Potentially, the  advertising possibilities that arise when multiple retailers join forces could be endless. This collaborative approach is the bridge to unparalleled growth and success in the realm of Retail Media.

Digital Experience Analytics (DXA) will be the future of Retail Media

As mentioned before, a deeper understanding of customer behavior is linked to successful advertising experiences for customers. That’s where Digital Experience Analytics (DXA) comes in, providing brands with valuable metrics, visualizations, and actionable insights to enhance product performance and drive growth.

For brands, DXA represents a great solution that delivers valuable customer insights, enables accurate measurement of advertising results, and facilitates collaboration with retailers. End customers enjoy a better shopping experience with relevant product content, increased engagement, and trust in brands and retailers.

Storm5 is your Retail Media growth companion

At Storm5, we are at the forefront of Retail Media recruitment. We empower RetailTech businesses and brands to unlock the full potential of their digital experiences. We understand the critical importance of executive positions in driving business growth and innovation. our mission is to connect the best talent in the market with the most impactful RetailTech brands.  We are dedicated to quality, ensuring that we provide you with candidates who possess the right skills, experience, and cultural fit for your organization. Get in touch now and join us on this transformative journey that redefines retail excellence.

We’ve helped some of the most successful RetailTech startups grow.

— now it’s your turn.