Posted by : Amitha Amarasinghe Thursday, February 19, 2015

Yesterday I delivered a presentation at SLIM Sri Lanka Effie Awards 2015 workshop powered by HP Print solutions. Organizers of the event wanted me to cover a topic somewhat futuristic for Sri Lankan context but yet realistic in global context. This was largely to go along with their theme for the day ‘strike big with digital world’s best kept secrets’. J

I naturally went for the topic Programmatic Buying which is a hot topic in the recent past. I was pretty impressed by the reception of the audience about what you can do with programmatic marketing. Several people inquired me after the session on possibilities of implementing real-time targeting mechanisms for Sri Lankan businesses using programmatic buying. I discussed three barriers ahead of us, using big data and programmatics in marketing.

One, the barrier of budgets. With the current scale of budgets Sri Lankan companies spend on digital media buying, implementing a big data driven programmatic targeting mechanism is just a dream. This barrier would eventually be broken as the internet penetration grows fast in the country, and when companies suddenly get to realize they are missing some important part in their media mix.
Second barrier is less evolved privacy laws in Sri Lanka. Data protection laws in Sri Lanka are not that evolved, so there are risks of people abusing these technologies making the consumer a victim. Companies who will become early adapters in this, should have proper integrity and self-regulations to set the right standards for the industry in future.

Third barrier is fear of failure. With enough budgets, enough data and good internal regulations, companies would still not adapt these technologies because of their fear of failure. As usual my advice for them is to fail now, learn now, and prepare for the future. You should rather fail in a low internet penetrated market than wait till it get to 50% penetration to make your first mistake.

In time to come I will blog more about programmatic marketing and precision targeting on this blog. Stay tuned!

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