The world of startups, entrepreneurship, and technology can sometimes be a rather confusing place, especially when it seems that every day ‘they’ are coming up with new peculiar and puzzling startup words to describe the latest trends. ‘FinTech’ was one, A /B Testing another ‘growth hacking’ was another, but now the dictionary busters have really outdone themselves with the latest contraction to hit the entrepreneurial vernacular.
The first time we heard this term we were more than a little excited by the prospects of what it could mean… unfortunately, its actual definition is somewhat less enthralling than we had imagined.
MadTech quite simply, describes the intersection between Marketing, Advertising, and Technology, 3 aspects of business now more closely intertwined, and interrelated than ever before.
This is because the traditional way in which brands reach and connect with their customers has shifted dramatically in recent times, with means such as television, radio, and print forced to give way to more modern, technology-driven strategies. In short, customers no longer make their purchasing decisions based solely on who has the greatest ability to create sleek and polished content, but in a much more diverse, multi-channel, and discerning way.
MadTech seeks to capitalise on these changes in consumer habits to find innovative and often highly targeted ways of influencing spending decisions. One of the most significant areas of growth which has created the potential of MadTech is the complex, and large sets of consumer data that have been collected in the online sphere. The truth of the matter is that when you make a purchase online, or simply complete a search, you are not only handing over your cash, but an enormous quantity of information about yourself as a consumer as well such as; what you like, what you spend your money on, when you spend it, what your spending range is, and so forth.
One of the most accessible examples of MadTech in action is the growth, development, and commercialisation of YouTube, as one of the world's most powerful advertising platforms. If you use the video search engine on a regular basis (especially in conjunction with a Google account) you will have, on occasion, been astounded with the accuracy of the advertisements presented to you… this is, of course, no coincidence.
YouTube has a truly astronomical reach, and with over 1 billion regular users across the globe, it has achieved a level of audience engagement that could never have been dreamed of by even the largest television corporations. This success has been many years in the making and it is only really in the past few years that brands have begun to see the potential of online video advertising as a means to reach a highly targeted audience, and overcome the hitherto ‘hit and miss’ strategies that had become the norm of the online and offline space.
This kind of ‘hyper-personalisation’ is one of MadTech's most lucrative and game-changing aspects, moving us ever closer to the world where marketing and advertising are seamlessly targeted and intuitive.
If you consider YouTube as a marketing / advertising innovation, then it is very clear to see why MadTech is causing such a stir at the present time.