Over the past year or two, I’ve had the impression that the term “TransPromo” is perceived outside the printing industry as being very print-centric. I have this impression because that’s what people outside of the industry that I speak with about TransPromo tell me. Perhaps because the terminology was so talked up in our own industry that the perception is warranted, although as an analyst that’s covered this area to a certain degree, I’ve always tried to emphasize that TransPromo isn’t just about print. Leveraging transactional data to drive the delivery of targeted, relevant messaging can be executed for multiple output channels to varying degrees of application and immediacy.
Whether or not the “TransPromo” term sticks around is not really of my concern; what I can say with great confidence is that it’s happening today, especially in the electronic/digital world, and it’s only going to grow over time. Why? There have been a number of recent developments and announcements that highlight how transactional data is being analyzed and utilized to drive highly-targeted and relevant messaging, with many signs pointing to increased investment in this area in the near future:
- A number of companies are either starting up or creating new offerings that enable real-time digital transaction- and behavior-based marketing. Cardlytics is a provider of inline targeted advertising for financial institutions and currently partners with the likes of Fiserv and others to deliver coupons, rewards, and ads to recipients. CLOVR Media promotes a similar offering that it calls “Card Linked Offers”, which are tied in with financial institutions’ loyalty programs. Cartera provides eCommerce solutions to industries that have loyalty programs and is also getting in the game with analytics-driven digital marketing and offer management services.
- Online consolidator services that help consumers aggregate their online financial accounts and provide tools for tracking and budgeting (e.g., Mint.com, Pageonce, etc.) are becoming more popular due to ease-of-use and value delivered. These offerings have access to thousands of peoples’ consolidated transaction information and the companies that run them are using this data to deliver targeted, relevant messaging, marketing, and advertising to users.
- Last week, Google announced its foray into the world of mobile payments with “Wallet”, a service that leverages up-and-coming Near-Field Communications (NFC) technology embedded in smartphones to enable “contactless” point-of-sale payments at retail merchants. What does this mean for Google? The ability to access, mine, and analyze your transaction data virtually in real-time, enabling them to deliver targeted, relevant marketing and advertising, including coupons, loyalty reward points, and more. It’s highly likely that Google will implement a marketplace where advertisers of all sizes conduct real-time ad buys to instantly reach users.
Many of these developments are happening strictly on the digital technology side, but I still consider the application to be of the transpromotional variety. Furthermore, I believe that these developments, despite being digitally-focused, will ultimately bode well for print communications. Many of the issues that have plagued the push toward achieving TransPromo for print communications, including organizational alignment and technology infrastructure, may receive a thrust toward resolution with the new era of real-time transaction-based messaging, marketing, and advertising being touted by the likes of Cardlytics, Google, and others.
There’s a wealth of information that can be gleaned from this type of data, and if pure-play digital tech innovation is the catalyst for increased use and awareness across all channels, I’d say that’s step in the right direction.