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While it’s hard to believe, 2019 is quickly coming to an end. With the end of the year also comes time for reflection — time to look back on the past year’s successes and begin preparing for the year to come.

In the spirit of reflection, the Cuebiq marketing team took stock of all major trends and hot topics in offline intelligence from this past year. Ultimately, we concluded that the biggest trends of 2019 were data privacy, brand safety, the merging of online and offline, incrementality, and predictive analytics. So let’s recap on why each of these were important and how they affected the advertising industry as a whole.

1. Data Privacy

It goes without saying that data privacy has been a very hot topic of conversation in 2019. For companies collecting location data, it’s essential that they do so in a fully privacy-compliant and transparent manner that puts the consumer first. 

With regulations like GDPR having been in place for over a year now, we have witnessed firsthand the effects they’ve had on how European businesses operate and handle data. This past year, brands started vetting potential future partners more rigorously, and they will continue to do so in the future. As the landscape evolves and more regulations such as CCPA come into effect, privacy will play an increasing role.

2. Brand Safety

Going hand in hand with data privacy is brand safety — which hinges on data security. While it is imperative that companies collect data in a privacy-compliant manner, it is just as important that once said data is in their hands, they do everything possible to keep it safe and secure.

Over the past year, companies across all industries have invested in secure practices for using consumer data. Those that haven’t have faced dire consequences, such as massive data breaches that are detrimental to their brand reputation.

The biggest lesson the industry has learned from this is that security teams should be routinely testing security products to uncover possible flaws. In fact, here at Cuebiq, we recently put our security tools and frameworks through rigorous testing.

3. Merging of Online and Offline

The intersection of online and offline is a familiar concept for marketers, especially when it comes to retail. With the rise of e-commerce, brick-and-mortar retailers must quickly learn how to compete by connecting clicks and bricks. In other words, they need to integrate online data from their consumers with offline data.

This past year, brands found that the key to merging online with offline lies in one thing: leveraging location data. Thus, brands are increasingly partnering with offline intelligence companies in order to close the loop on the consumer journey. By using offline measurement, brands can measure their online and offline campaigns’ success in driving consumers to store.

4. Incrementality

The concept of incrementality has become more popular with marketers over the past couple years, but it really rose to prominence in 2019. Simply put, incrementality is a metric that gives brands a deeper understanding of campaign performance. 

As it relates to offline measurement, incrementality builds on the industry standard of uplift, going one step further to reveal whether a campaign actually changed consumer behavior. We expect incrementality at the consumer level to be a major hot topic for 2020 as well. 

5. Predictive Analytics

Like incrementality, predictive analytics is a topic that really started to gain momentum this past year. As a refresher, predictive analytics is the use of data, statistical algorithms, and machine learning techniques to identify the likelihood of future outcomes based on historical data. In other words, we can predict consumer behavior by finding patterns and relationships within the data we already have.

We’re excited that Cuebiq’s enhanced platform offers solutions that rely on both predictive as well as prescriptive analytics. Going one step further than predictive, prescriptive analytics find the best course of action for a given situation and then issue specific recommendations. 

Now that we have delved into the offline intelligence industry trends of 2019, it’s time to start looking ahead to next year. Stay tuned for the next blog in this series, which will feature predictions from our internal experts on what the hottest topics for 2020 will be. 

In the meantime, you can stay up-to-date on all offline intelligence trends by following our blog.

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About the Author

Cuebiq Marketing Team

The Cuebiq Marketing team is a group of data-driven marketers with a focus on strategy and a flair for the creative! Our team is broken down into Growth and Product Marketing departments, and we work on everything from running the Cuebiq website, to developing thought leadership content, to sales enablement and pipeline generation.