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Blockchain in Digital Marketing: More Customer Confidence – and Innovative Advertising Methods

T-Systems International | April 20, 2021

Concerns around online activities, such as cybersecurity, data privacy, and transparency, are affecting digital marketing. Blockchain technology will help in the stabilization of customer trust in the digital world. It will increase the credibility of online ads, brand honesty, cross-promotion with influencers, and reward customers for data sharing.

Due to the monopoly or duopoly, platform companies such as Facebook pose threats to multiple industry leaders in digital marketing. Furthermore, data scandals fueled skepticism in the digital advertising industry.

Both users and advertisers believe that control over their data is slipping away from them. Blockchain technology allows marketing organizations to work more autonomously in the advertisement industry while also increasing the credibility of their product and corporate communications.

How? The blockchain's key feature is that it maintains data on decentralized servers in several locations rather than in a single centralized repository. These distributed data records (blocks) are inextricably linked together to form a chain. Every computer (peer) in the network receives the same unalterable data copy. This has the advantage of no longer requiring all market players to trust a single repository – and therefore no central point of attack for cybercriminals or vulnerability to technical malfunctions. The concept is similar to an online document held in a decentralized location that can be modified continuously through several computers. This lays the groundwork for more transparent, secure, and reliable solutions in digital marketing.

Brand and product transparency

Any marketing agenda mainly focuses on sustainability. Many businesses claim to be sustainable. But how are they going to prove it? Blockchain technologies can enhance brand integrity within the supply chain management process, for example, by ensuring that products have been packaged or shipped sustainably – 2 important conditions when the products are organic.

As a result, an Industrial Control System (ICS, for example, T-Systems) writes all data into a blockchain that is synchronized for all players, including the manufacturer, delivery agent, and retailer. This procedure allows customers to obtain facts about the sources of their products as well as monitoring information.

In reality, the cloud2cloud combination of the Cloud of Things (T-Systems) and the SCP (SAP Cloud Platform) utilizes Internet of Things (IoT), blockchain, and machine learning to monitor the supply chain of the apples used in a smoothie (use case of T-Systems, pdf). Consumers can trace the direction and origin of organic apples using IoT data, supply data, and origin data – and do a fact check on the brand's value proposition. This enables businesses to sell their products as sustainable with much greater credibility.

Blockchain is on the rise

For the time being, high prices, the failure of real-time apps to attain commercial viability, and a lack of sector-wide initiatives are preventing widespread adoption. While some potential blockchain applications are still unclear, it is beginning to transform the digital world. In the digital advertising ecosystem, blockchain can increase transparency, confidence, and productivity. It will soon become a force in digital marketing rivalry that marketers cannot continue to neglect.

T-Systems has already pioneered individual solutions to help companies get started with blockchain. Several pilot projects have already been initiated, and sector-wide experience sharing will be a critical next step. Marketing organizations who wish to stay competitive can into the processes that blockchain can simplify or even monetize.

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