Media, Online

So I snuck into the OMMA conference…

…ok, so not really.  But they did stream it online and at that particular time at that particular day, there were no conference calls or feedback or research I had to do, and so I got to listen.  And while the panelists had great things to say, the conversation sparked a thought I had.  So, now you get to have it, too.

OMMA Chicago Conference

SCIENCE: Panel: Viewability, Fraud And The New Economics Of Media Buying

Panelists were asked: Are visible ad impressions getting worse or better? The consensus was that it’s getting better because we have the ability to now track viewability instead of just monitor viewability.

“But,” asked the moderator, “why do we put more onus on digital viewability than we ever had with traditional?”

My answer: Because digital companies got so high and mighty with it all being “trackable.”  Magazines had readership from doctors’ offices and multi-members in a household and as planners we knew to discount the impressions.  With planning for Out Of Home we used to have to half and half and half their Daily Effective Circulation in order to get to a realistic impression count.  But when digital sales came on the scene, we were told you get what you pay for.  And now we know that’s not true, but I think we’re all pretty peeved that we had hung our own hats on it and yet we now have to shrug our shoulders and say “bots happen.”

The best thing that’s changed since I’ve gotten back into the media planning world is that CTR is a mostly dead KPI (Key Performance Indicator).  With Eyeblaster’s 2008 “Whither the Click” article, we were able to start to educate clients that most of their audience doesn’t click.  Now, even if we’re seeing amazing clicks, the campaign has to also provide AMAZING conversions for us to even bring it up.  It’s all about the purchase, the application, the email sign-up.  What are your consumers doing once they visit your site? That is what finally matters the most.

There was one panelist that mentioned that the biggest problem is now attribution modeling, which was only started to be talked about before I left the ad agency.  Applying the full credit at the last view/click of an ad really limits the full scope of how much it took to secure a client.  I remember with one digital client back in 2010, we had a full display and search campaign and by the end they only had us running search because they felt the conversions were the highest.  Then, for the next campaign, they only wanted to start with search and the campaign didn’t perform as well.  Perhaps it was the e-blast, the display ad, AND the search result that helped the client convert?

Of course, attribution modeling is still too hard.  A co-worker mentioned that an ad on a rug could be considered as having helped convert a consumer, but how do we keep track of absolutely everything and measure the influence.  There’s way too much ART in that and not SCIENCE.

C’est la vie…

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