Simpli.fi Senior Vice President of Marketing Ryan Horn weighs in on effective advertising campaigns in today’s marketing environment in this insightful Q & A with Talk CMO
Do you think today’s brands are not able to run effective advertising campaigns? If so, why?
The biggest challenge that advertisers faced in 2020 was being agile enough to keep up with changing market dynamics. These dynamics varied by week, industry, advertiser vertical, media type, and other factors.
I don’t think this is the case at all. In fact, I think today’s brands are in a great position to run and execute effective campaigns across numerous channels, including mobile, display, social, connected TV and more.
Brands are becoming savvier and savvier with the marketing and advertising vendors they are selecting, and where they are allocating ad dollars. They are placing a premium on strategies that have measurable ROI and the ability to optimize their advertising based on which channels or tactics are providing the best return on their ad spend.
Simply put, advertisers have the ability, now more than ever, to ensure every dollar spent on advertising performs and the results are measurable, no matter where they choose to allocate their budgets.
When advertisers can drive measurable actions, they know their money is being well spent and they’re getting bang for their advertising buck. When selecting a vendor, the highest priority now lies with those that can drive and track the desired action to prove out ROI and ROAS. This paired with today’s data-driven world, advertisers of all kinds, including brands are able to make smarter advertising decisions based on the campaign performance metrics they have available at their fingertips.
How can CMOs prove campaign ROI to their counterparts?
In this age of digital advertising, whether Display, Mobile or all the way to Connected TV advertising, attribution has taken leaps forward compared to the traditional mediums. Every dollar spent can now be accounted for, in near real-time. The days of “awareness” being a key metric have been traded in for measurable actions.
Did the advertising campaign drive website visits? Online purchases? Completing form-fills? Add a product to an online shopping cart? Visits to the brick and mortar locations? Which locations specifically? What is the lift in foot traffic at each location? What percentage of visitor conversions can be attributed to the advertising campaign? What amount of foot traffic was natural conversions vs. campaign conversions?
These are all questions that can now be answered thanks to the attribution available with digital channels and strategies. CMOs can look at Cost Per Website Visit, Cost Per Click, Transaction Values, Cost Per Store Visit, ROI, ROAS, and more to provide concrete metrics on the performance of their initiatives.
What steps should brands take to deliver high-impact localized advertising campaigns?
Brands need to take into account all of the unique attributes in each of the different target markets they desire to advertise in.
Nomenclature, buying preferences, brand perception, etc. vary from city to city across the country and will have a significant impact on how the campaign performs in each location.
A “one size fits all” approach doesn’t provide the needed personalization to drive high performance at the localized level.
Each market needs to be viewed as its own campaign, from the planning stage to the execution stage, all the way to optimization, reporting, and analysis. The closer a brand can get to one-to-one marketing, the greater the success the campaigns will have.
How can brands continue to improve their marketing efforts in an increasingly dynamic marketing environment?
Brands need to make sure they are continuing to invest in channels that have visibility and transparency into campaign performance. If they cannot, at any given moment, gain insight into how well their ad dollars are performing, they should consider moving away from those tactics or vendors in favor of solutions that provide full visibility into campaigns.
Without at least a baseline level of visibility, it’s hard to optimize those campaigns to achieve a high level of success and even harder to justify the ad spend in those areas.
In other words, advertisers should work with vendors that provide them with increased agility across all media types, including the ability to adjust spend, messaging, and ad creative on a moment’s notice.
The other area that warrants a strong focus from brands as they plan their marketing strategies is to prioritize campaigns or channels that drive actions. Reach will always be an important campaign goal to a degree, but targeting the right audience to generate actions is really what the goal should be for any advertising campaign.
Reach was always a key consideration because marketers could reasonably assume that some percentage of the people reached would take an action. Now with the precise targeting and attribution available in digital, they can reach fewer people with fewer impressions and actually drive more actions.
This results in less spend required to meet the initiatives of the campaign or stated differently, a much higher ROI for the campaign.