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The Dynamic Duo That is Data & Creative



Director of Business Development at Magnetic EU Ben Hayward on how data and creativity have become happy companions

The Dynamic Duo That is Data & Creative

The intersection of creativity and data is bound to be a hot topic at this year’s Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity. Given that this is the first year of the Creative Data Lions, we will now see awards given to standalone and branded tech solutions along with adtech platforms and models. There are bound to be more and more tech solution companies engraining themselves in the Festival that, true to its name, was started to celebrate creativity. 

Historically and stereotypically, creativity and data have been assumed to be at odds. How can the defined, objective results provided by data analysis be compared with the subjective opinion inspired by creativity? The definitions have sometimes seemed mutually exclusive. People view creative differently, but when it comes to data, a number is discrete, finite, and unarguably comparable. However, in advertising, data and creativity have become happy companions.

Now more than ever, advertisers rely on the ability to report whether or not their creative was successful in reaching new or existing consumers. 

Marketers want to know if they've made the correct decision in terms of the creative itself and where they’ve spent their money. As advertisers gain access to data-driven tools, questions surrounding measurement and optimization are increasingly ‘top of mind.’  They want to know which ad works best and if a certain creative style yields higher results. They also want to understand any other factors that contribute to the success of a campaign so that they can apply those leanings in the future. Data can certainly be used to influence and fuel further creative executions. Using data to dynamically optimize creative elements of an ad allows marketers to tailor messages based on individuals’ behaviours, location, and preferences. 

Intent data, or data used to understand consumers’ buying habits and purchase journeys, can assist marketers in driving more sales. For example, showing me an ad with a special offer for a product I have researched online is a better bet than showing me a product that has little or nothing to do with what I am looking to purchase. By helping to predict what a user is interested in purchasing, intent data ensures that marketers bid on the right impression and optimize their creative accordingly. Simply put, intent data makes the marketers’ job of matching the correct creative with a potentially interested consumer, easier, faster and more efficient. Data and creativity go beyond just display advertising and have become essential in creating relevant customer experiences across email and on a retailer’s site. If you know what people are in-market to buy, you can optimize creative across channels and begin to understand the real value in making hyper relevant creative.

We live in an age where consumers want relevant, real-time information. Some refer to this as data-driven advertising, but the creative is equally important and a key factor in making marketing and advertising work. The relationship between creativity and data is ever evolving and will lead to interesting conversations and better solutions for marketers well beyond Cannes.

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