What if I told you there is a crystal ball for how your digital marketing will perform? A way to look into the future with a level of certainty, knowing what your media spend would produce and how it would impact your brand’s bottom line. Would knowing that your media budget is well spent, even before the campaign launches, help you sleep at night? If so, then read on.
Brands want to be where their customers are. Now more than ever, brands are finding their customers online, so it should be no surprise that U.S. marketers are pumping more money into targeted digital advertising (i.e.: video, search, display banners, native, paid social). In 2019 alone, that figure nationally was $129 billion, and we could see it hit $201 billion by 2023. While not every marketer is spending 7+ figures in the online world, any amount of money is too important to risk through a lack of insight in how it will perform. Thankfully, today’s technology can predict what a media strategy will deliver throughout a campaign, well before it launches.
The digital planning team at Morgan & Co. puts a significant amount of time and energy into predictions, for the purpose of holding digital advertising accountable. That accountability is aligned first and foremost to the business goals of the brand. If we are booking hotel rooms, we look through the lens of the customer journey and conversion process to predict how many hotel rooms we can sell. If it is helping a law firm sign new clients, we can look at several factors to predict the outcome.
We do this through data and information, modeling three primary components within an advertising initiative – Creative, Media, and the Landing Page.
In each campaign, the engagement and responsiveness of consumers change dramatically due to the type of creative and messaging used by the client. Tone, inflection, humor, visuals, LTOs (limited time offers), among many things, matter. Having a front-row seat to how campaigns and creative messages perform (convert or sell) allows us to gauge, within reason, the expected ROI a client can bank on. Because of this, it is crucial to have our media planning team at the strategy and creative table early on. While we are not creative directors, after having studied the brand’s ideal customer base and witnessed creative’s performance during other initiatives, we can share valuable insight that could help inform the creative strategy. Yes, even as numbers people, we’re the first ones to say that creative matters.
Successful digital media strategies incorporate a mix of online channels, all to bring brand and customer together in a meaningful way. The Morgan & Co. team must evaluate and quantify that unique mix of channels in terms of their ability to generate a return. This is only possible through the analysis of extensive journey and conversion sequences that our planners build. It is heavy math, revolving around the phases that consumers go through during decision making (i.e.: clicks, time on site, shopping cart transactions). It allows our planners to quantify the cost per conversion (a sale or new client) and a media vendor’s overall worth. From that cost per conversion, and in light of the media spend, we can predict each media vendor’s potential and performance. The media vendors are prepped ahead of time on the campaign goals, and provided a real-time dashboard allowing them to track how they’re performing against those goals.
One of the most critical components for predictions, and sometimes often overlooked, is the landing page the digital ad leads to. More specifically, how well the page converts consumers into customers. Complex, poorly-designed landing pages that are difficult to navigate and take action within, obviously do a terrible job of getting customers on board. And with any given campaign, that is a huge problem and must be taken into consideration when predicting a return on investment. Success comes from landing pages that are clean, easy to navigate, conveys information clearly, and offers up ways to take action.
While most prediction models are custom, and vary by client and industry, the following is an example of what one looks like for a CPG client. Sorry, we had to hide their points of measurement and conversion, to protect the innocent of course.
Investing in media does not need to be risky. In fact, today we have the ability to predict the future performance of a campaign even before it launches. It is not magic, but instead science built upon data, historical experience and understanding the customer journey. At Morgan & Co., we use data, analytics and information to predict the return brands are seeking. If your brand needs more certainty to help you sleep better at night, contact us for a free discussion on how we can help.