Exert more control over your ad budgets and measure the stuff that really matters with these media buying tips.
The current online climate has called for more transparency in media buys, and tighter contracts with partners to improve the media buy experience for online marketers. Even though multinational advertisers believe they have established a more transparent relationship with agencies and ad tech partners, brands still spend too much money chasing total reach.
Why does this matter? Because they aren’t evaluating the overall effectiveness of campaigns.
As more and more clients come to realize they’ve measured stuff that ultimately doesn’t matter, we’re finding that measurement is both part of the problem and the solution.
Want to exert more control over your current ad budgets? Here are some media buy transparency tips to keep in mind.
Verify & Trust Agencies
Transparent contracts don’t eliminate all trust issues, although they certainly do help increase transparency. The lines get a little fuzzy between agencies that only earn money from their clients and don’t get markups from groups deals, and those that do.
Data transparency has grown increasingly important as advertisers start to realize how much margin agencies and ad tech vendors are making from their budgets. As media budgets naturally shift from chasing reach to campaign evaluation, advertisers are connecting the dots and noticing their measurement hasn’t been enough to show how much inaccurate data they have been purchasing from brokers.
Per a World Federation of Advertisers survey, 62% of brands have made uncovering data arbitrage and the markups made on their data a priority for 2018 (up 14% from 2017). To verify the reliability of third-party data, some brands are running tests comparing their own data with the third-party data being purchased to fill out audience segment pools.
The Elephant in the Room: GDPR
Ensuring your business complies with the General Data Protection Regulation isn’t enough. Marketers will also have to vet all the ad tech and martech vendors they work with, to ensure that everyone along the chain is GDPR compliant. Failure to do so could result in huge fines, which no one wants. Be sure to do you “due diligence” with brokers, so failure to comply doesn’t affect your bottom line.
Focus on Context
An increasingly crucial part of media strategies for advertisers is audience planning, especially as they start to replace third-party cookie data with their own customer data and contextual data. Greater focus on audience planning brings a greater focus on context, which seems to be something that advertisers have forgotten. As the focus on context grows, the market will swing back to proven media and advertisers working directly with media owners.
Outcomes vs. Price
There will always be cost-driven advertisers, but what’s becoming more important is measuring outcomes. With brands shifting the way they break down their advertising spend to commercial return, we may begin to see tracking on brand buzz and consumer response to evaluate the short- and long-term benefits of advertising investments. So while price may still be a factor in your media buys, your focus should transfer to outcomes.