Someone once asked me, “I know exactly what I get when I put up an advertisement on the print, yet when it comes to the digital spaces, it scares me not having as much control of whatever is being seen or said about my message. Why is this?” I nodded and said to him, “If print media is the ship, the digital world will be like an ocean. You can sail a ship and ride it against the strongest winds but you can only complain that the sea is rough, or good. So it is, but it is still the sea, and we can still only sail upon it and take our chance with the weather. If we try to pretend it does not exist, it will simply drown us.”
With the ever growing pressure on budgets and accountability, it is imperative for agencies and their clients to start their game on the right food, get access to as much information as possible so they can maximise the effectiveness of their campaigns. Here are a few rules of the game:
#1. Creative is king
Good ads need only 1 impression. Lousy ones will never wear-in. And this is especially true when it comes to the digital world, where advertising budgets always feels like a drop of water in the ocean. A good creative is often the key factor that drives the variance in ad recall rates, according to Ipsos ASI’s global advertising database. It is also wishful thinking to hope bad ads will ‘wear-in’ with an increase of spend.
Fortunately, when it comes to digital ads, there are always opportunities to track and optimize your creatives across spaces and platforms. Always come prepared with multiple sets of creatives to allow creative optimization to take place in real time.
#2. Measure what’s relevant, not what’s available
Too many times, we have focused on putting measures upfront such as the high number of impressions and the CTRs and the CPMs as the KPIs for our campaigns. Yet when it comes to the post buy, we can never really truly find it in our heart to tell our clients that their campaign has achieved maximum impact, maximum reach. It’s time to set new metrics to the task, to find ways to keep us accountable.
Equip yourself with the new and current tools available out there, use google analytics to track trends, use social listening tools, ad serving and tracking solutions to track all the way down to acquisitions, use your social media dashboards to give you new insights on your fan interaction rates and behaviors.
#3. Don’t just create content, facilitate the creation of it
Advertising budgets are limited. No matter how much content that can be created, it is never enough. Remember, when sailing in an ocean, you can only set your anchor at so many places. Think beyond that, start casting nets at multiple places in hopes for the assorted varieties of fish that you can haul. Create content, enable platforms, partner with online media portals, commission long term social media ambassadors, incentivize and most importantly, learn to redistribute your content.
#4. Add touchpoints rather than overspending on one
The role of which digital channels a brand uses cannot be underestimated. However, there is no one golden ticket – what works for one brand or product, will not necessarily work for another. Pick your digital channels based on their role, rather than affordability. If you can’t see how a channel will add benefit, do not use it. Assume most consumers will experience more than one media channel, therefore, maintain creative and message synergy across all channels. Extending the campaign to an additional media channel is more effective than over spending on one.
#5. Time your conversations
As a brand, there is always a lot to say about your own product, how good it is and how different it can be. It can be confusing when there are too many messages that one brand ends up confusing its own audience. Be one dimensional when it comes to messaging, time you content drops wisely. Time you paid media spends wisely to push and influence the buzz. Keep the message simple yet offer enough depth for it to sink in. Never never try to overwhelm, your audience will just lose interest.
Here’s to smoother sailing and better winds ahead!