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“Use of big data would be the spotlight of online marketing”

Sammy Hseih, CEO, iClick Interactive

Sammy Hsieh, CEO and founder of iClick Interactive, an expert in online marketing shares his views on online marketing, the way the market is moving and how iClick is looking to tap into the growing demand for Search Engine Marketing. Hsieh is also part of the panel at Festival of Media Asia 2013 that discusses the evolution of media with the growth of online marketing.

What are the hottest trends you are seeing in online marketing?

Online advertising maintained a strong momentum around the globe and has become the 2nd largest advertising medium surpassing print in US and China, two of the biggest advertising markets in the world.  The growth is expected to further be fueled by the emerging use of data by marketers in making more informed decisions.  According to a latest research by Digiday, 60% of the ad campaigns have leveraged audience data in targeting, and marketers expect to increase by up to 44% of budget to employ data in their online campaigns in 2013.   Hence, undoubtedly the use of big data would be the spotlight of online marketing in the future.

What are the key things a marketer or a brand should take into account to have strong online marketing strategy?

From a macro-perspective, online advertising market will continue to drive towards a more automated workflow in which planning, execution, optimization and analytics expertise would be integrated and performed in one unified platform.   Programmatic buying would soon be realized in which marketers can discern, evaluate and bid on vast amounts of media in real-time, supported by artificial intelligence and machine learning enhanced targeting.   But, behind all these, big data would be the key strategic asset to realize the change.

While we know that analytics is important, but how aware are the brand marketers today about it? Do they really know how to leverage this?

Marketers begin to aware of the trend and we are seeing companies to heavily invest on technology in aggregating and mining first and third party data from disparate sources.  Data quality and availability are going to be the critical and so for firms whose data, no matter internal business data or campaign performance data, is still living in siloes and lacks integrated analytics, it is about time to pay more attention on data collecting, mining, processing and automation in order to make data interoperable to achieve data-centric decision making.

How does iClick help its clients maximize their ROI?

Established to help marketers to maximize online marketing ROI and enhance efficiency, iClick built Asia’s first algorithmic-based online buy-side platform – XMO that enables programmatic media buying and dynamic optimization to be done through advanced algorithms and data technology.  iClick helps marketers to unlock the value from the complex online ecosystem by simplifying and automating the entire online marketing process. Our proprietary online buy-side platform XMO is a fully-integrated platform that allows marketers to plan, execute and analyze online marketing campaign in just one single interface.

What are your key solutions? Do define them.

iClick’s proprietary online buy-side platform – XMO, connects to a wide variety of online inventories across search, display, video and mobile.  Through XMO’s unique audience targeting and programmatic buying capabilities, marketers can easily identify their target audience from the scattered media inventories and deliver the most effective ad messages to convert them. Also, XMO offers powerful and actionable insights through its robust and intuitive reporting and analytics system, making sustainable performance possible for every marketer.

Which are the areas of service you expect your big growth to come from going forward?

SEM (Search Engine Marketing) has been considered as  the most effective medium in bring significant ROI to marketers, but with the rise of RTB and the advancement in data and targeting technologies, we are seeing display solution to generate a comparable result with that of SEM.  Hence, we foresee more marketers would adopt a more diversified media mix in the future that encompasses SEM, display, and even mobile, video and other channels and formats.