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Marketing Master Class, Episode 4: The evolution of paid media

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Want to learn about growth marketing from some of the best in the business? Tune in to “The Marketing Master Class” podcast series to hear expert tips, hacks and best practices. In Episode 4: “The evolution of paid media,” Ginny Marvin, paid media reporter for Third Door Media (Search Engine Land and Marketing Land), dropped by to give us her take on where paid media is now and where it’s heading. You’ll also hear her best practices for incorporating risk into your marketing strategy.

The state of paid media

Photo of Ginny MarvinPaid media has evolved to become more sophisticated over the past few years with the growth ofmachine learning, automation and programmatic ad buys. "In getting more sophisticated, [paid media] becomes more challenging, but also provides more opportunity," Marvin said in the podcast.

One opportunity is the ability to target audiences by more than keywords. Marketers are starting to give more attention to who their audience is and what their audience’s behaviors are. They can roll those behaviors and dynamics into marketing plans.

The rise of voice

“There are going to be really interesting opportunities within voice, and what shape or form those take is going to be various,” stated Marvin. There will likely be a lot of hits and misses along the way as companies refine how paid media can fit into interactions with virtual assistants and other voice offerings.

Marvin remarked, “Because voice can be anywhere and everywhere, it could be how we treat voice in the car from an advertising perspective is going to be different than how it is in our living room perhaps.”

The opportunity of machine learning

Machine learning — and its role in marketing — is evolving. As it becomes more sophisticated over the next several years, marketers may feel some tension as they lose control over some levers while being given the opportunity to focus on others.

Over time, marketers will realize “that we could focus attention elsewhere — like good ad creative and good landing pages, or reporting, analytics, attribution — to see how everything plays together,” Marvin said.

The balance between strategy and risks

When asked how a marketer can balance being strategic while taking risks, Marvin outlined three steps to incorporate risk into your marketing strategy:
  1. “Have a test budget cushion.” Build the test budget into your quarterly or annual budgets, that way you will make risk and learning a priority.
  2. “Risk has to be part of the equation.” Make risk inherent in your planning because there are always new things to test and trial.
  3. “Planning should be fundamental to everything.” Plan your tests and pilots, and make time for post-mortems. Plans can help you organize your ideas and keep the project on track, but they can also help you evaluate what you’ve done and what you might do differently next time.
Hear more tips and insights from Ginny Marvin in Episode 4: “The evolution of paid media.” You can also subscribe to “The Marketing Master Class” and other Bing Ads podcasts on SoundCloud.
Want more best practices to modernize your digital marketing strategy with search engine marketing? Visit the Growth Marketing hub.