The last five years have seen an extraordinary amount of change in the media buying and analytics space. With rapid ad tech and analytics advances, CMOs are now under intense pressure to account for their media spend in terms of actual revenue dollars generated at a granular level. This pressure is transferred to creative advertising and branding agencies to quantify their work while often lacking the support and tools to showcase the impact of their ideation and creativity.
The Media Tech Challenge
New media analytics present significant challenges for creative and branding agencies.
Delivering client value used to be straightforward: create successful brand elements and ads for your client, place the advertisement within the client’s budget and then measure the overall results in terms of views, clicks or engagement. That worked well for TV, radio, print and web for many years. But, it didn’t follow the consumer path from ad creative to the end purchase. It also relied heavily on personal relationships and guesswork to determine what was “effective” or not. This approach no longer cuts it in the eyes of CMOs.
Media tracking and attribution technology follows an advertisement’s impression on each unique channel along the path to a click or action taken. Understanding consumers path and interaction with the creative in real time triggers the advertisement bidding, device choice or messaging served. Current advancements in technology use artificial intelligence to respond to customer’s engagement by delivering dynamic creative to keep customers engaged, buying more, or returning more frequently.
CMOs know there are tools they can use to track their media budgets and showcase revenue drivers which equip them to powerfully reinforce their ability to address their CEO’s concerns. Where CMOs struggle is finding a big picture view of this path, and they want that… right now.
What Are Your Agency’s Options?
You have three options to adapt to these new market demands:
First, you can continue doing things the same way, offering more creative and basic analytics / tracking capabilities. The challenge here is that your savvy clients are going to progressively and relentlessly seek out how to better understand the entire customer journey, including the point of customer acquisition, how the customer navigated that journey, and how much revenue that customer is worth over time. If you cannot deliver, they’re going to find other companies that can. While the clients you retain tend to be complacent, and not push the creative boundaries you enjoy which stifles your potential revenue growth as an agency.
Second, you can make some basic investments in ad tech and analytics, and work on integrating them with your existing media providers. This will begin to automate the performance of media purchased, allowing you to offer ad metrics and volume tracking analysis. But this has not addressed the hard hitting questions from your CMO clients who want to know spend and attribution to the end purchase.
Finally, you can partner with a media buying and analytics firm that has the ad tech infrastructure in place to overlay media buys, spend, and transaction in your call to action. When choosing a media partner you should consider one that can offer your creative/branding agency capabilities such as:
- Programmatically buying and distributing custom creative to the right person at the right time
- Directly correlating media spend and client transaction data to show where your client’s dollars are generating actual sales
- Optimizing media mix across channels, to compliment campaigns that generate higher customer value, etc.
Finding a media buying and analytics partner can be tricky since many media agencies also have creative in-house. Which is why an agency partner (like True Media) focused exclusively on media buying and analytics can be a win-win.
Seek a partner who invests heavily in enterprise-level software, data and analytics personnel. The partner should also have an effective agency framework and preferred partner pricing so you can rapidly adopt these capabilities and offer them to your clients at a profit.
Partnering offers the ability to quickly deliver world-class media technology capabilities to your clients with minimal investment, retain clients for many years, and grow a new ad tech services revenue stream.
Don’t Fall Into the Half-Baked Media Tech Trap
Creative and brand agencies consistently underestimate the investment and expertise required to deliver new media technologies to their clients. Ad tech requires significant investment and time to implement.
Don’t fall into the “keep doing it the old way” or “do it yourself” traps. You need to consider how to implement an effective new media technology strategy. Otherwise, your agency will fall behind and you could lose your most valuable clients to competitors that offer real media analytics capabilities.
To learn more about how your agency can partner to acquire world-class media technology capabilities for your clients, feel free to contact Charles Howe @ True Media Tel: 573-356-2842 email: [email protected].