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17 Aug 2022

Retail Media – The Future of AdTech

Retail media, also known as commerce media, has taken the Adtech space by storm, with recent predictions forecasting that it will reach $52 billion in…

Retail media, also known as commerce media, has taken the Adtech space by storm, with recent predictions forecasting that it will reach $52 billion in the United States alone.

By 2026, the Retail Media network will be worth more than $1.3 billion in the United States. The acquisition of CitrusAd last summer was the most recent retail media expansion and acquisition. Last month, Publicis Groupe unveiled its revamp of the self-serve media platform for merchants to use for advertising. The new organisation, CitrusAd powered by Epsilon, expands media options beyond a retailer’s in-store platforms.

The combination of DTC digital and in-store commerce media is what makes it exciting for the monetisation and optimization of Adtech businesses. While brand relevance and customer favorability are the traditional foundations of any advertising mix, commerce media allows customers to have a better customer experience through more relevant offers and incentives in a private, secure manner. All of this is accomplished through omnichannel transactions.

The Rise Of Commerce Media

The concept of commerce media first emerged through affiliate advertising, in which publishers collaborate to connect their content to business prospects. The space has recently expanded rapidly into Retail media networks (RMNs), third-party ad platforms for marketplaces and retailers’ websites. It also includes “shoppable ads,” which allow consumers to purchase items via online or mobile advertisements, as well as “live commerce” or “shoppable TV,” which allows consumers to interact with video content and make purchases directly from their TV or device screens. In China, commerce media purchases reached $170 billion in 2020, driven entirely by influencers and live streams in the fashion/apparel and beauty sectors.

The rise of e-commerce in conjunction with the pandemic has hyper scaled this network, raising the bar for what consumers should expect and generating new indicators of consumer behaviour from which advertisers can learn. Given the rapid growth of RMNs and other types of commerce media, advertisers need to act quickly to develop a strategy that keeps them ahead of competitors. Over the next twelve months, more than 80% of advertisers expect significantly higher RMN spending. A similar number of advertisers consider retail media to be a top strategic priority.

Steps to Incorporate Retail Media Into Your AdTech Solutions

To increase your influence with commercial media, particularly RMNs, AdTech organisations can take the following three steps:

Find internal and external partners

Collaboration with RMNs is primarily driven by marketing for the vast majority of businesses. However, because retail media has a direct impact on both product inventory and ROAS, sales teams must be involved. Integrating sales discussions with suppliers, brands, and advertisers (across all marketing goods) and having a single client front door for all discussions is critical to having an operational retail media business model. Only 30% of those polled said they ensured marketing and sales had combined visibility and accountability. Having retailers as partners is also important in clearly articulating goals, simply by demonstrating a willingness to work with retail media networks to test new product offerings.

Discover fresh business insights

The conclusions drawn from retail media data can provide advertisers with new ideas. For example, the Esteé Lauder Company is relaunching Dr. Jart+, the Korean skincare brand it acquired in 2019 as part of a $1.1 billion deal for Have & Be Co., with a digital-first ethos, through its direct site and online beauty marketplaces, adopting AR to draw in customers and collaborating with unconventional talent on new social platforms like TikTok.

Retailers seeking improved performance and new perspectives should think about investing in robust reporting and measurement tools. Before making a commitment or increasing their expenditure with merchants, advertisers will want to ensure that these capabilities are available. Due to this, they will be able to conduct real-time reporting on the effectiveness of campaigns and audit their spending. This type of test-and-learn strategy could result in midstream improvements and help guide future campaigns and investments.

Identifying Talent Gaps

When developing a retail media network, talent is frequently overlooked, despite the fact that data requires a workforce to be put into action and produce value. To ensure that the media network is operational, retailers will almost certainly need to add jobs and skill sets across departments such as Engineering, Analytics, Strategy, and Media. Once the technical requirements of the network have been identified, engineers will be required to create, implement, and maintain the underlying technology that enables the media network. After defining data capabilities and metrics, Sales and Marketing teams must create and optimise segments of preferred audiences, as well as track performance over time. To maintain relationships with advertisers, a dedicated team must create and sustain demand while also creating materials to attract the right audience. Media buyers will plan and optimise all omnichannel media campaigns across the network.

Key Takeaway

The age of Commerce media is just getting started. Businesses must keep their customers as their compass as they approach the commerce media potential. Customers are already expecting personalised services and truly beneficial advertising. They will soon expect to be able to make purchases while watching TV, browsing the internet, or using virtual reality. Businesses that identify appropriate client use cases and form strategic alliances to deliver these experiences stand to gain significantly. They will also aid in shifting advertising’s goal from audience delivery to business growth acceleration.

Storm5 Is Here For You

MarTech, and specifically Retail Media, is becoming increasingly important in the RetailTech industry, and we want to be at the forefront of this. Storm5 is a specialised recruiter dedicated to working with the best companies in the RetailTech and eCommerce industries. Storm5 is here to help you find the right senior talent for the right specialism, whether you are a start-up or planning to scale up. Please get in touch if you are looking to grow your team.

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

— now it’s your turn.