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How Identity Marketing is Transforming the Industry

Remember the days when you weren’t bombarded with ads right after you’d looked at something online? Well, those days are gone. The digital marketing industry has become highly dependent on identifying — and re-targeting — consumers who might show even the slightest interest in a product. After all, people making purchases is how businesses stay afloat. Enter identity marketing, one of the most powerful marketing tools out there.

How Identity Marketing is Transforming the Industry

The art of identity marketing goes beyond the traditional marketing strategies many of us are famliar with. This dynamic approach is where brands and individuals merge in a harmonious symphony of values and aspirations. Identity marketing transforms mere products into meaningful extensions of one's identity.  

Imagine a world where every purchase not only fulfills a need but also reinforces a consumer’s identity. In modern day soceity, self expression is an important aspect of our lives.  

By mastering identity marketing, brands can help consumers achieve their desire to express themselves even more authentically. Brands can help customers find which products they desire, while also building a deeper consumer-brand connection, which is great for any business.  

Gone are the days of one-size-fits-all approaches; now, it's all about aligning values and resonating with the aspirations of your audience. At its core, identity marketing is about understanding that your brand isn't just a commodity — it's a pivotal part of a person's self-expression journey. This shift transforms the consumer's relationship with the brand from a transactional one to an emotional and symbolic one.  

Let’s uncover more about the practice of identity marketing and how it’s transforming the industry. Plus, you'll learn more about how DrivenIQ can help.  

What is identity marketing?  

Just like it sounds, identity marketing is all about identifying and targeting people based on who they are — their interests, habits, locations, relationships, demographics, and more. It’s a phenomenon that has caught on among businesses wanting to target their advertisements more precisely and reach potential customers with the right messages.  

Through identity marketing, brands can identify interested individuals from vast numbers of customers. This is where advertisers mine data from various social media channels, apps, websites visited, and through email campaigns.  

Over time, identity marketing has quickly gained traction, because brands have realized that customers were more likely to respond to personalized ads. You’re likely already familiar with these types of ads, which suggest you buy something because “other people like you have already bought it,” or more generally appear to be ads tailored just for you, often right after you view a specific or similar item online.  

That’s identity-based marketing! This approach to marketing taps into the customer’s interests, needs, demographic information, and even previous purchases. It allows marketers to analyze the best way to reach a brand’s target audience by utilizing the attributes, or characteristics, of their customers.  

The Need for Identity Marketing  

A survey of 1,000 agency and marketing executives released by Ogury and IDC shows that a majority believe user tracking will eventually become obsolete. However, only 40% of the respondents said they are familiar with non-cookie-based options.  

The survey found that 32% will change the type of ad-tech supplier they work with, and 64% of these respondents said they will increase their budget to suppliers who don’t collect personal data.  

Many companies are investing in non-cookie-based targeting options as a cookie-less future seems inevitable.  

Every company has its own approach to the cookieless future, ranging from Ogury’s personified advertising that builds personas without using personal data and Inuvo’s AI-driven audience insights portal to Acxiom’s deployment of hashed email addresses as identifiers. It's time all marketers realize the landscape of audience targeting is transforming, and there's no time like the present to jump on board.  

How is Identity Marketing Transforming the Industry?  

The emergence of identity marketing is bringing about some significant changes in the digital marketing industry. Here’s a closer look at how it's transforming the landscape:  

1. Making Ads More Relevant

Traditional ads rely heavily on demographic information like a person’s age, gender, and location to determine who should be targeted. Identity-based marketing does much more than that. It really digs into the customer’s psychological needs to personalize an experience that speaks to their interests and desires.  

This methodology of ad targeting helps marketers uncover user intent and deliver ads that are more relevant and effective.  

2. Improving Customer Insights

Identity-based marketing allows marketers to collect highly individualized information about customers, giving them a unique way of understanding how different types of people interact with their brand.  

Marketers can use this data to better understand customer behaviors and preferences, segment target groups, create more targeted ads, and strengthen relationships through personalized experiences.  

3. Fueling Cross-Device Targeting

What does this have to do with identity marketing? Well, it turns out that mobile technology now allows us to continue a customer journey uninterrupted across multiple devices — including desktops, laptops, tablets, and phones.  

This is an essential part of identity-based advertising as it allows marketers to identify each user’s devices. They can then then target the consumer on specific devices or across all of their devices.  

4. Boosting Ad Revenues

Identity-based marketing capitalizes on the data that people voluntarily provide every day, allowing brands to create ads that are tailored to a person’s past purchases, interests, geographical location, and more.  

As a result, this is one of the most efficient tactics for increasing ROI and generating better advertising results. Additionally, when users don’t feel spammed by generic ads, they are more likely to pay attention to advertisements that are relevant to them and take action.  

5. Enhancing Security & Privacy

Collecting personal data can appear to be a risky venture for the average marketer. As consumers become increasingly conscious of their online data, this risk can appear to be increasing over time. As such, identity-based marketing allows advertisers to observe customer interests and activities without ever collecting personally identifiable information.  

Besides removing the risk associated with storing sensitive data, observatory targeting also avoids the ethical implications surrounding addressable advertising.  

Capitalizing on Identity Marketing  

As the digital marketing landscape is evolving, customers are also adapting to identity marketing. Some people welcome the development and even find it helpful, as it removes much of the guesswork from their online searches.  

Others, however, prioritize their privacy, and it’s of utmost importance to them that companies respect this decision. For instance, Europe has recently adopted GDPR laws to provide citizens with more control over their data and protect them from companies that misuse it.  

This illustrates that customers now have a stronger say in how their personal data is collected and used. As such, identity marketing will no longer be about one-sided customer profiling but will rather involve the customer in the process.  

Examples of How Leading Companies Use Identity Marketing  

Identity marketing is being used by a variety of companies in different ways. Here are some notable examples:  

1. Headspace

Headspace, a company specializing in meditation and mindfulness, targeted K-12 educators with an exclusive subscription offer. They recognized the impact that teachers had on society and chose to reward them with a special offer. This move not only increased engagement within the teacher community but also helped Headspace to gain further insights into their target audience.  

2. Spotify

Spotify used identity marketing to make their free subscription service more appealing by providing students with access to special discounts and exclusive content. This made it easier for them to attract and maintain a large user base.  

3. Nike  

Nike created an exciting shopping experience for customers by leveraging their data — from personal style to activities they partake in — to deliver personalized recommendations and discounts tailored to their lifestyles.  

4. Target

During the back-to-school season, Target has ran an exclusive discount for teachers. Through self-attesting data, it was able to recognize a teacher’s need for saving on the bulk of items they are required to purchase for their students. Target’s marketing team delivered a tailored experience and created an emotional connection with its target audience.  

How DrivenIQ Helps Companies With Identity Marketing  

From data enrichment to audience identification and targeting, DrivenIQ offers a suite of products that can help companies take advantage of identity marketing through first party data.  

With the ResolveID™ Site Audience Identification Tag, website owners can identify up to 40% of their website visitors. DrivenIQ’s VisitIQ platform combines a robust identity graph and curating capabilities so businesses can easily create custom audiences for marketing, leadership development, and digital onboarding. Additionally, the GeoZoning feature helps monitor in-store and competitive shopper traffic.  

The AudienceID™ platform helps businesses build their own custom audiences from a wide array of demographic, psychographic, and financial indicators. The MediaIQ™ solution then helps brands activate custom audiences on their behalf by providing a range of media services, such as programmatic marketing, social media campaigns, email marketing, and direct mail.  

Lastly, DrivenIQ’s data enrichment offering helps companies take their disparate datasets and create enriched records with customer information like emails, names, addresses, and mobile ad IDs. To learn more about DrivenIQ's suite of Solutions, request a demo today.  

Off to a More Profitable Future  

Identity marketing isn't just "the next big thing" — it's becoming the way of doing business. It offers businesses a profitable future that will enable them to target-specific customers with unique and highly personalized messaging at scale.  

It's clear that identity-based marketing isn't going away anytime soon, so it makes sense to get on board and start taking advantage of the power of identity in your marketing campaigns. With DrivenIQ at your side, you’ll be well-prepared to do so!