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Four Forces That Affect Consumer Adoption and How to Leverage Them in Programmatic Advertising

August 11, 2016 — by Parker Noren

This article by Parker Noren, Director, Programmatic Strategy & Optimization, MediaMath, originally appeared in MarTech Advisor. Noren suggests marketers can increase customer adoption through intelligent audience targeting and the right advertising strategy. Read an excerpt below: 

Attracting net new consumers generally produces greater brand growth than expansion among current customers. Yet, relatively high acquisition costs often result in prospecting being deprioritized in programmatic campaigns. We’ll review how you can improve prospecting efficiency by aligning your execution with how consumers adopt brands.

In many ways, programmatic is still in its infancy despite its genesis being more than a decade-old. Consider a Forrester report from last year in which only 23 percent of respondents said they understand programmatic buying and actually use it to execute campaigns. As the industry rapidly pursues new technology and ways of connecting with consumers, it remains inwardly focused. This is fair in part—the way we engage with consumers through digital is unique from mass broadcast channels. However, do not forget that marketing and consumer theory still applies. We can improve the success of our programmatic campaigns by applying a deeper understanding of how consumers adopt brands.

Market research and consulting firms have coined and validated many frameworks for explaining why consumers will adopt a product or service. The Progress Making Forces—developed by Bob Moesta of The Re-Wired Group and core to Jobs-To-Be-Done Theory—provides the most clarity for understanding why consumers will adopt a product or service and is applicable regardless of your brand’s industry or stage in lifecycle. It places the motivations, frustrations and anxieties of the consumer at the center.

Four forces determine whether a consumer will change her current behavior and adopt something new. Two motivate her to switch to something new, while the other two keep her set in current behaviors (see Figure 1). The Push of the Situation is the result of dissatisfaction with how current solutions fulfill a need, and the Magnetism of the Solution is how well your product or service resolves this circumstance of struggle. Even with strong motivating forces, a consumer may still not adopt a new solution. It’s easy for the consumer to fall back on the known solution due to habit, and there is risk and anxiety related to trying something new—no matter how compelling the new solution. These are the two negative forces that discourage adoption.

Figure 1: The Progress Making Forces

Marketers can improve their adoption rates by understanding their prospective customer’s four forces. Programmatic campaigns—in combination with smart tactics on-site—can be directly informed by this understanding, and ultimately drive greater incrementality as a result.

Read the rest of the article at MarTech Advisor.