The marketing landscape has evolved significantly following the invention of the internet. Back in the 90s, print media was the most popular form of advertising. This has now changed with digital advertising taking over a larger share of the market; according to the latest metrics by Statista, brands spent over $455 billion on digital advertising in 2021 while print media only accounted for $17 billion.
That said, the main beneficiaries of digital advertising have been the centralized media platforms that provide an avenue for brands and prospective clients to interact. For instance, Google’s ad revenues in 2021 were as high as $146 billion, followed closely by Facebook which generated $84 billion in advertising revenues.
Meanwhile, brands and participants on these Web 2.0 platforms continue to receive subpar services and minimal profits from their investments, not to mention that corporations like Facebook have been accused of mishandling users’ data. Given this scenario, it is no surprise that stakeholders in the marketing industry are now considering other alternatives.
This quest for better marketing avenues has led to the adoption of decentralized marketing channels that are supported by emerging technologies such as blockchain. At the core, this nascent tech introduces distributed infrastructures, effectively eliminating the middlemen who have been exploiting their market dominance.
In the traditional marketing setting, a decentralized marketing approach involves subdividing the department into various sections and giving these units autonomy in innovation and project implementation. Well, blockchain technology makes this concept a notch higher; marketing operations are further decentralized by introducing ecosystems that are governed by the participants instead of a central organization such as Facebook or Google.
In doing so, this emerging tech is giving brands and clients an opportunity to reduce the marketing costs and ad spamming, a prominent approach in today’s digital marketing industry. Even better, the decentralized nature of blockchain networks means that stakeholders have more say on the marketing models; as for the targeted prospects, one can choose to block intermediaries from accessing their data or curate a profile that only attracts the right brands.
So, which are some of the projects that are making decentralized marketing a reality? While most of the crypto-focused innovations have been built around financial services, upcoming Adtech blockchain-native platforms such as Profila have stepped up to solve the existing gap in modern-day marketing. This Cardano-built DApp is designed as a new-era digital marketing platform to restore control over personal data.
Furthermore, the Profila DApp marketing ecosystem features a fair revenue-sharing model compared to the centralized digital marketing platforms. Brands can leverage this platform to communicate directly with their target market at a cheaper cost than the packages offered in the existing environment. In addition, Profile’s decentralized marketplace enables brands to narrow down their marketing ads to the right audience.
As for the clients, Profila has created a collaborative environment, giving users an option to share their personal data with brands. The project features an incentivization model which compensates clients by paying them 50% of the ad revenue generated from brands who use their data. Currently, this is not the case in Web 2.0 marketing where centralized media platforms have established a monopoly, ripping off both brands and their users.
With the digital ad marketing industry set to grow bigger in the coming years, one cannot help but notice the shift in sentiment. Creatives, including prominent rappers such as Kanye West, are building their own platforms to distribute music. The billionaire recently launched a device dubbed Stem Player following the album launch of Donda 2. A trend that will eventually give rise to decentralized distribution channels across the marketing and art industries.
On the Upside
Though a relatively new approach, decentralized marketing has the potential of leveling the playing field for stakeholders (brands and clients). Some of the advantages of this approach include;
- A More Customized Marketing Model
Unlike the Web 2.0 marketing models, a decentralized marketing approach enables brands to tailor their ads based on interested clients. It is also easier to distribute content, given that brands do not have to deal with the gatekeepers who have long dominated the market while giving little concern to a brand’s marketing goals. Similarly, the targeted clients have an option to choose which ads they want to receive.
- Efficient Decision Making
With decentralized marketing, brands can enhance their decision-making process. This is because most of the decentralized projects run based on incentivization models hence motivating the target market to give honest feedback. Customized client profiles can also help brands in their product and distribution strategies.
- Control Over Personal Data
In the current world, data has become the new oil. However, only large corporations are making a fortune from this newly found treasure. Decentralized marketing platforms will bring back data control to users; these upcoming ecosystems offer the flexibility of sharing one’s data and compensation in the case where brands use this data to enhance their products or services.
With digital ecosystems having taken over most of today’s industries, it is apparent that we are living in the internet era. More importantly, Web 3.0 (decentralized web) has shown that we do not have to rely on centralized service providers. As the digital era comes of age, there will likely be a paradigm shift to decentralized market ecosystems. This is already evident in the adoption of blockchain networks and digital assets by retailers and institutions across the globe.