January 23, 2023

How key trends from 2022 will continue to impact your media efforts in the new year

A lot changed in the media landscape last year, paving the way for how people expect to consume and engage with media in 2023. From privacy and transparency concerns to search optimization and digital audio services, we sat down with Bailey Lauerman’s Head of Media, Megan Storm, to discuss key media trends marketers need to understand to be successful in the new year.

The era of data privacy and a new frontier in digital advertising

A crucial direction in media—and one of the biggest trends in 2022—was the continued concern and discussion about online privacy, and how businesses will need to pivot strategies and find new ways to connect with their audiences.

With Social Media Today reporting that 42% of consumers are clearing their browsing history regularly, people are making privacy a priority in their web usage. The new era of advertising technology is trending toward consumer consent, inevitably leading to the “death of the cookie” this year.

“From the consumer standpoint, it’s one thing when you’re logged into a site or app and you’re aware and willingly providing your data, but it’s another thing when you’re just browsing from site to site and cookies save your search history, personal information and even the products you look at,” Storm says.

While this service proved to be great for personalized advertising and brand marketing, the majority of digital users do not like to be tracked website to website or thought to thought. With brands like Google and Apple replacing cookie tracking and creating new privacy-friendly data insights, the shift in privacy and transparency is happening now. So what does this mean for the future of digital advertising for your brand?

The good news is digital advertising can live on after cookies. “From an advertising perspective, the importance of first-party, brand owned data and contextually relevant targeting are both going to be crucial in how you reach audiences,” said Storm.

Preparing for this cookie-less world becomes synonymous with maximizing first-party data. First-party data is all about personalization. Gathered through consent, coming directly from your brand channels, this data appropriately manages people’s identities while delivering a hyper-focused and relevant connection at the same time. These meaningful connections will elevate the brand-to-audience experience, a key trend moving into 2023.

“Right now, brands should be focusing their attention on collecting data on their consumers, in-person shoppers and/or online visitors. This will help them be prepared for the future of media campaigns,” Storm further explains.

While personalization is easier said than done, consider these two key tips:

  1. The content experience is everything. People are on an exploratory journey–- make sure you offer engaging, high-quality content that allows your brand to build credibility and awareness with your audiences, increasing the likelihood of consensual first-party data.
  2. Digital frameworks and identity management systems are a must. Creating a digital framework that manages various volumes of consumer data, either in-house or from a vendor, leads to a more coordinated personalized experience. Now, just because marketers can use large amounts of data, doesn’t mean they should. Keeping ethics, responsibility, transparency and security concerns at the forefront of your brand’s mind will be crucial in maintaining positive audience relationships.

The diminishing presence of cookies is frightening but not grim. Getting creative with contextual content and personalization can make sure you’re still reaching key audiences as data-privacy limitations change, keeping your brand from being left behind in 2023.

The future of search


Did you know that 82.9% of the population now view the ability to search as a necessity? This statistic, from Insider Intelligence, shows that whether looking for a new restaurant to try, to answering a burning question on their mind, people continue to prioritize search to improve their daily lives.

“Search remains important because it provides in-depth market indicators,” Storm explains. “If someone is searching for something, they’re most likely in the market or highly interested. We’ll see search still be an integral part of campaigns and media plans in 2023.”

The biggest trend that dominated the search market in 2022 was aligning content to search intent. 2022 taught us that people are choosing to interact with brands on their own terms. Focusing on keyword search becomes a small portion of the extensive process to identify the intention behind keyword searches.

Searches typically fall under three categories: to find something, to learn more about something, or to complete a specific action. While these often overlap, a thorough understanding of search intent will allow your brand to conduct more effective keyword research, creating both user and search engine friendly content that becomes more relevant to your audience.

Keeping users’ search intent in the back of your mind will improve your brand’s media strategy for the better, helping to maximize first-party data and ultimately supplementing the diminishing presence of cookies. Maximizing site traffic by focusing attention on user engagement and education rather than search engine optimization (SEO) tricks can provide strong results. Each person visiting your brand’s digital properties has a goal in mind—but it’s your job to figure out just what that is.

As search algorithms evolve daily, you should focus your search strategy and attention on phrase matching, branded comparison keywords and search intent to help set your strategy apart from competitors in 2023.

The importance of digital audio advertising

Digital audio has been taking up more than an hour per day of adults time since 2016. And Insider Intelligence projects that listeners will consume an additional three minutes per day of digital audio, accounting for 12.7% of their overall media time. While it is difficult to imagine that audio technology was developed long ago during the 19th century, radio and podcasts have become increasingly accessible in recent years.

Insider Intelligence also reports that out of all audio listening, 55% is accessed digitally, with the remaining 45% occurring via traditional radio. This key statistical breakdown of listening time predicts change is on the horizon.

Storm details just how crucial audio listening can be to your brand’s media campaign. “With traditional radio, you’re really leaning into broad station demographics, finding more of a general audience,” Storm said. Whereas, “turning on a podcast or using a digital audio platform not only shows how an individual is engaging with specific content, but the person is logged in with their personal details, allowing for more precise targeting.”


This leads to the question, how does digital audio listening translate to campaign measurement? The opportunities to test messaging relevant to content, various audio lengths as well as high-impact display ads delivered through digital audio platforms provide engagement metrics and campaign insights to determine campaign and audience effectiveness.

With listeners spending 6% of their digital audio time with podcasts, categories such as lifestyle, parenting, comedy and true crime are just a few types of popular thematic content individuals are engaging with frequently, making digital audio the wave of the future.

“If I were to log into Spotify, Pandora or the iHeart app, the platform knows who I am, my location, my listening habits and other key demographics that enable serving me relevant ads that I am more likely to engage with,” said Storm.

Supporting niche content within the audio space allows for users to actively listen and engage which leads to more precise targeting. This transition to active listening provides key measurements in real time, ultimately supplementing the diminishing presence of cookies.


Planning your 2023 media journey

Entering a new year full of changes can be nerve-racking. But no matter the changes happening in today’s landscape, Storm emphasizes one key step in planning: be consistent.

Consistent content, effort and brand measurement is a great practice to identify key learnings. “The world of media has changed drastically from when I first began my career,” said Storm. “From the popularity of traditional radio to today’s fragmented media landscape, one theme that has remained unchanged in achieving success is consistency.”

As a full-service integrated agency, working with brands to produce authentic content and share back precise data is at the top of Bailey Lauerman’s priority list. With access to several tools, and our own demand-side platform (DSP), otherwise known as Flyover Media, we understand the current landscape, trends and media to create and shape a strategic media plan for your brand.

Within Flyover Media, we plan, buy and optimize all of our digital media. This includes connected TV and digital audio to display, search and audience retargeting. In addition to real-time buying, our analytics platform is used to connect all data sources for complete campaign analysis providing key learnings across media channels in real-time.

If you have questions about future media trends or are interested in activating a short- or long-term campaign, reach out to our Head of Media, Megan Storm at [email protected].


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