Data is the backbone of modern digital marketing and we must always stay on top of the latest consumer trends. Here are the results of four consumer-behavior surveys that should help brands better connect with their target audiences.

1. Amazon is gaining traction with advertisers

Although Amazon has not yet earned the trust of other platforms, more than half of the 1,500 marketers responding to a survey by the marketing analytics company Singular say they are going to increase their Amazon advertising budgets. This stat alone goes to show that marketers are willing to go where the people are and Amazon is definitely emerging because of its powerful platform.

Obviously, you need to see ROI before spending heavily on a platform, but it seems like it is only a matter of time before Amazon reaches equal footing with Facebook and Google for media spend. Then what? At some point, we are going to hit saturation and even the top platforms will be in danger of losing business.

2. Direct mail and digital can be a powerful combination

No shock here, consumers responding to a PebblePost survey say they keep mail that is relevant to them and throw away the rest. But what were we doing as marketers once we engage with consumers through direct mail? Pairing a digital strategy with direct mail is an emergent tactic.

According to the PebblePost survey, which was conducted online with 3,200 consumers, 61 percent of purchases are influenced by direct mail. Left unanswered are a few key questions:

  • What purchases were made?
  • What other channels were consumers influenced by before their decision to buy?
  • How many times were they exposed to an ad?

What is clear is that a multi-layered approach is necessary when trying to drive consumers down the sales funnel.

3. Attribution still a mystery to most marketers

Attribution – that is, assigning value to the channels that led a consumer to your website – is still a bit fuzzy to most marketers as this chart from a ClickZ survey shows. Less than 10 percent of the people who responded think they do it well.

Any attribution model must account for all channels that brought consumers to your website. Some companies are still using last click but that is an outdated method since it’s obvious that there is value in the impressions that were delivered before someone converted. Understanding the entire path to conversion helps inform marketing decisions for future campaigns, but no one has mastered how to attribute value to more traditional channels. It is always going to be difficult to determine if seeing a billboard, watching a TV commercial or hearing a radio ad influenced the last click.

How would US marketing professionals rate their company’s current understanding of data-driven attribution? % of responses, sept 2018

Source: ClickZ, “The State of Marketing Measurement, Attribution & Data Management” in partnership with Fospha, Dec 12,2018.

4. How personal should you get with consumers?

People want you to make them feel special before they make a purchase. Consumer surveys have found that 7 in 10 consumers want a personalized ad and 4 in 5 will make a purchase if you provide them with a personalized experience.

But wait… in a survey of 6,000 adults across the U.S. and Europe, the cybersecurity firm of RSA Security found that only 17 percent believe personalized ads are ethical.

Having a more personalized experience can help make someone convert, but when does it get almost too creepy? Advertisers should be careful or risk scaring someone away forever.