Measuring Digital Display Advertising ROI

Define what to measure before the campaign begins
Defining what to measure before the campaign begins in order to yield accurate quantifiable RIO data.

The lines between print and online advertising no longer exist. The Internet has matured and digital networks have become more sophisticated.

Today, digital display advertising effectiveness is measured mostly with ad server based metrics, as if site traffic is a direct indicator of advertising effectiveness. However, click through rates, page views, and time spent on page provide little in the way of measuring advertising effectiveness as it relates to purchasing behavior.

Progressive marketers are evolving past first generation measurement analytics, implementing a single, more accurate set of analytics to measure both digital and traditional print advertising effectiveness.

Why first generation digital analytics are misleading

  • Click through rates fail to measure the cumulative influence that display advertising has on the purchasing decision, as the average click through rate is only about 1%.
  • Gross Rating Points (GRP = frequency x % reached) are used in an attempt to compare digital to broadcast reach and frequency, but are also misleading because the viewer may never see the advertisement due to faulty placement (eg. ad is placed below the page fold, etc.)

Moving to a blended model for determining digital display advertising effectiveness

In an attempt to simplify the metric for advertising effectiveness, many marketers are turning to a blended model of server based analytics combined with brand lift survey measurement.

Server based analytics are the most prevalent campaign tracking tactic, using platforms like Google analytics or email marketing software to measure online marketing performance.

Brand lift

Brand lift is defined as the percentage increase in the primary marketing objective of a brand advertising campaign. Brand lift can take several forms but is primarily used the measure the extent to which advertising has shifted customer perception against one of the key purchase funnel metrics.

Brand lift metrics:

  • Awareness
  • Attitude
  • Favorability
  • Intent
  • Preference

Brand lift can be measured in real time through survey-based measurement tactics.

Typical brand lift questions include:

  • Awareness: “Have you heard of brand Z?”
  • Favorability: “What is you opinion of brand Z?”
  • Preference: “Will you purchase brand Z in the future?”

In addition, some aviation marketers have simplified even further by using the Net Promoter Score to cut across the complexities of digital and social media channel. A relatively straightforward concept, the Net Promoter Score asks one simple question:

“On a 10 point scale, how likely are you to recommend our company to a friend or colleague?”

A higher score indicated brand satisfaction.

All of this is based on the simplification of “big data” that online marketing is capable of generating. Determining what you want to measure at the beginning of the campaign will align marketing with achieving business goals and provide the best indication of marketing ROI performance.

photo credit: Patrick Hoesly via photo pin cc

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