As digital marketing experts, we love data. In 2014, we were concerned with collecting as much of it as we possibly could. Of course, bigger does not always equal better. One thing that needs to be focused on during 2015 is relevant data. We are not just talking about information. We need to spot the most meaningful indicators within that information.

Now is the time to put all of that data to good use. We have been collecting information on consumers for years. Focus in 2015 needs to switch from how we use that data to target customers to how we can use that data to create a better UX (user experience). Consumers are all about engagement. If UX is not being improved by data collection, then the company is either wasting resources or collecting the wrong data.

People no longer expect just their phone to be smart. Now they want their entire home to get involved. That actually means even more collection of data. Just think about projects such as Amazon Echo. Everything a person says is going through the system to provide up-to-date information for the user. That data flows both ways, however. Is your business ready to become integrated into the smart homes of consumers?

2014 was the year that programmatic advertising became a buzzword. It was a great way to get every company into the digital marketing world, but it certainly is not the future of the industry. Expect companies to reevaluate how their digital ad dollars were spent in 2014. Digital campaigns in 2015 will be more targeted, as businesses are becoming savvier when it comes to digital marketing.

Finally, while a few companies have hit it big over the last few years with real-time marketing, too many have suffered huge failures in an attempt to jump on the bandwagon. Timing is everything with real-time marketing, and most companies are not equipped to handle it properly. Plus, there is always a greater degree of risk in real-time marketing. Like with programmatic, expect real-time marketing and other high-risk scenarios taking a back seat to digital marketing methods that are paying off more consitently.