Information tied to identity is the basis of people-based marketing - with this technique, marketers are offered better targeting solutions but also more opportunities to enhance trust with both the client and the consumer, says Richard Lees.

Advertisers can now target people with increasing accuracy, relevance and context, across a greater number of devices, channels and potential touch points than ever before, and its accelerating at pace.

Creating opportunity out of challenge

Those advertisers committed to using data to deliver tailored advertising to individuals at scale have a unique opportunity to turbocharge the ROI of their marketing spend and the value of their customer relationships over time.

Conversely, those brands unable to collect and connect the reams of data required to serve the best interaction at the right time via the right channel risk wasting budgets and alienating customers.

This approach of talking to people, with relevance and context is people-based marketing.

People-based marketing involves identifying real people, rather than cookies or proxies, and delivering marketing interactions to known individuals in a way that can begin to maximise the opportunity to deliver real customer lifetime value. It means focusing on real people and delivering meaningful experiences, across every channel and device – all uniquely designed for a specific, real person.

Such an approach is the only way to deliver consistent, tailored experiences, offers and communications across the multiple devices, platforms and media people use and consume.

Meeting the challenge of GDPR

People-based marketing will also prove important as GDPR becomes enforceable, requiring companies to gain active consent from consumers when collecting their data online.

A people-based approach in which advertisers use real insight to personalise the types of messages and the frequency with which they target consumers will be key to successfully gaining this consent, by ensuring that business focus on the needs of consumers and are sensitive to them.

GDPR will also prompt brands to shift their focus towards gaining first-party data, with the correct permissions, at every opportunity, which will enable them to deliver a more effective people-based contact.

Moving to a people-based approach

Switching to this people-based approach will require advertisers to develop a deep understanding of their customers, built from real data, before designing and activating marketing programmes using that same data.

For most organisations, this will mean adopting new platforms or adapting how they use their current capabilities, as well as ensuring the correct alignment exists between internal teams, clients and suppliers.

Rising to this challenge by ensuring the right people, processes and technologies are in place will be the best way to move towards every experience, interaction, or touchpoint being informed by data, created for the individual, and designed to move the customer towards a deeper relationship with the brand.

Realising true people-based marketing in this way is increasingly how brands are meeting today’s challenges, benefitting consumers and, as a result, meeting brand objectives – which is why it will define the landscape in the years ahead.