Archive for July, 2008

Digital Media Planner Guide – Evaluating Vertical Ad Networks

In my ongoing series on Online Media Planning the next big question we try to answer for Indian Online Media Planners is how to select between vertical ad networks to derive maximum RoI for your clients.

 

Before we get into the selection part its important to look back into the fundamentals of it. Vertical Ad Networks as found similarities with Vertical Portals are basically collection of media either forming set by similarity in content of media or kind of audience they aggregate. Eg of similar content vertical ad network would be Go Sinbad – Travel Ad Network which focuses on collection of travel inventory provided by likes of yatra, zoomtra, makemytrip etc. On the other hand there are audience targeting vertical ad networks like CXO being mooted by same people as behind Gosinbad which would aggregate CXO audience across channels.

 

As compared to Horizontal Ad networks on the other hand as name suggests are in game of aggregating media across channels to connect advertiser goals to audiences via use of effective technology.  They are more pro-advertiser and are dependent on getting higher RoI for advertiser from low quality inventory which a publisher cannot sell directly to advertisers by mean of technology with higher return for publishers being derivative of making their inventory perform for advertisers.

 

In a recent conference a known media planner was seen mentioning how vertical ad networks are much better then horizontal ad networks by mean of transparency in media buys they provide. Other than this line their was no second point which the planner was able to add the reason being if sites could perform on their own or provide scale then they would be competing for ad dollars directly on media plans instead of being aligned to an ad network. Importantly networks are looked as hedging tools by planners to hedge risk taken on spends on vertical portals and horizontal portals what it means in plain English is when the same site which they wanted to buy really comes as a collective buy with other 2-3 sites at a better negotiated average cost it makes an attractive buy for a planner.

 

Other than being collective buy of site in a bouquet one time they really haven’t shown performance depth to performance driven advertiser of today. Biggest issue which has been seen in the US with vertical ad networks is that’ they are attractive one time buy but generally people don’t tend to get performance and recently a big technology blog publisher in US which was aligned to new blog network have started running Tribal Fusion for serving relevant ads.

 

This is not to discourage media planners from buying vertical ad networks but to advice that you are responsible for buy you makes which is even in the case of horizontal ad networks but their opportunity to shift budget from one vertical to another vertical to see where your advertiser will get performance also is seen as major reason in US on selection of horizontals over vertical ad networks.

 

For selection of any media for your advertiser its important to answer one question what kind of RoI will it provide. Every Media Plan developed by you can be measured by these 3 quantifiable metrics for all digital media bought and sold

 

–         Scale – # of impressions, clicks you are able to buy to have higher share of voice for your advertiser in segment they want to advertise on net

–         Reach – number of potential clients in terms of unique users or potential clients you are able to expose your advertiser product.

–         Technology – In terms of micro level targeting  you are doing to find and map their potential clients with your advertisers products

 

If you are able to divide your media plans to these 3 metrics and quantify every dollar brought to Response or RoI you will see higher output and efficiency of your dollars spend to reach your client goals.

 

On basis of these 3 same metrics let’s look at how to evaluate Vertical Ad Network for your Media Plan

 

i)                    Total # of sites which are part of the vertical they command. Needs to be 50+ sites offered on selection to show depth of their vertical

ii)                   Do they provide access to 3 out of the top 10 comscore site for the vertical they operate

iii)                 What is the entry point for the user of vertical publishers eg search engine, directly going to site. If Search engine then sites page rank is more important and knowing top 5 pages inside the site is important instead of homepage views.

iv)                 When providing site selection what kind of data do they provide on each site also do they offer information on mutually exclusive audience. In order to make this effective you can request information on ability to do frequency cap across your media buy instead of on one site to improve RoI for your advertiser.

 

If you are able to find a vertical ad network which would meet this criteria will eventually translate as a calculative action buy on your media plan resulting in higher response rate for your advertiser for sure. 

Advertising Campaign Performance Management – Selection of Media

In today’s fast moving world where advertiser is interested to run campaign on pure performance to get lead or acquisition. Its become very impotant for an online marketer to select the right portal,site,placement etc to get lowest cost per conversion and highest scale possible.

But how do you determine what conversion ratio which property will get and how to standardize format or type of advertiser and CPL cost one could offer as media owner.  Lot of people will say its dependent on type of advertiser,product type of targeting used etc. But that worlds in display marketing where you get ideal conversion rate of 2.5% but lets say if we take an average campaign , average media potential is somewhere around 1.35% for the medium based on past experience.

If we take this maths as god and try to standardize type of form used which is Name|Email address| Telephone | City| Selection specific to product.  With this kind of form based HTML banner or microsite without clutter with just form and basic data on product you are able to standardize # of leads you can get and price point by this simple maths

= (#impressions * CTR) * 1.35% = will give you leads and cost per lead will be cost at which impressions are brought.

Its sounds very simple but in real world i have seen campaign after campaign this maths getting validated out. So does mean their is no scope of optimization = scope of optimization exist that to fill the gap between 1.35% to 2.5% or even higher but that is learning which a publisher brings on table. But as a marketer when selecting media this is how you should calculate as you just dont know publisher you are dealing will how much value your campaign and generate higher conversion ratio.

Brand Advertising Performance Measurement in India

Today when we meet Publishers and Online Advertising Agencies everyone talks about lack of even 1% proportionate spend by Brand – FMCG advertisers like Nestle, Pepsi, Unilever etc on online medium for reach out to masses.

At a recent discussion organized by Nikhil Pawha  – Mediamnama i meet couple of people which were indicating why brands dont spend online due to lack of performance metrics or sheer scale of medium as always indicated as “New Media or Alternative Media” with just  access to 30 million active users in India when compared to TV & Print which has access to 400 million users.

Being in Online Industry for almost 10 years i have personally been firm believer or positioned the medium as most performance measurable due to automated intelligence and sheer capability to collect data. But the kind of data we collect or metrics people look into like CTR(Click through rate), Impressions served are the just functional data points which were created by us marketers to bring some audit ability to our medium instead we started to use this to compare ourselves to print and TV where lack of such data from publishers perspective makes it harder to define.

On the other hand if you look from perspective of the advertiser like a big telecom giant or big toothpaste brand which caters to mass audience just dont just consider them foolish when they only get excited by wow factor shown by a publisher like a rich media ad communicating to user about their brand or sponsorship to a section against measurement of traffic to their micro site talking about their product as for them being on the online medium is to give user to talk to their brand or be wherever their potential product user.

We as online marketer need to show potential to online brands somewhat similar to how offline medium agencies work where they try to understand the pain point of the brand in terms of market positioning, reach to consumer, brand message, channel problem etc  which a brand face and give solution through medium of advertising to solve these problems and show RoI in simple brand recall + most important increase in sales perspective. This is something very similar to what Naukri’s of the world may do Cost per Resume or as one online marketer was suggesting going Cost per Pizza sold to an International Food Chain present in India it sounds very foolish but its very practical in all sense.

Why cant campaign for a women cosmetics product measure increase in sales or give feedback to brand on lack of availability of their product by sheer interest shown from one region etc.

The WPP and Publicitas of the worlds have for long been measuring performance for brands in offline world and we as online marketers need to come out from our measurement of CTR is what brands are looking for answers and need to get more innovative to drive more media spends online.

In answer to later question which talked about scale which medium provide you are right when some one in discussion from audience mentioned that 90% of audience online already has access to a mobile phone and a telecom brand advertising online will not really benefit in terms of RoI by asking user to subscribe or change providers but knowing so much about our users online give the marketer an edge where we can address specific pain points of our brands like increasing ARPU per subscriber already in a telecom circle where they find potential exist but not been able to crack it via the offline medium etc.

We need to evolve the medium bring in more technology metrics for increasing measurements in simple terms which offline world provides to brands to get access to more money power but another question needs answering do we have capacity to consume a 20,000 crores budget online per year. Answer is NO and we need to grow the medium users or evolve as medium for other mediums to integrate to us. Lets cross the 100 million user mark soon to stay in this race otherwise technology and business models will get too evolved without test user base for measuring their scale and may lead to early collapse of lot like the dot  com bubble burst where lot of entrepreneurs replied with answers of their models being too early for that time.

Mixer for Startups – Launch of Medianama

Hi All,

Nikhil Pahwa Ex-Contentsutra has found his calling and launching Medianama officially

Date: 18th July
Time: 6:30 PM – 9:30 PM
Venue: Essex Farms, near IIT Delhi
The Discussion: “Surviving A Downturn”
The Panelists: To Be Announced
Discussion will be followed by a Mixer

The discussion on Surviving the downturn will be lead by Leading Personalities from Internet Industry who have seen the DOT COM bubble burst before and how can startups charter out plans to sail through.

If you cannot attend the mixer you can send in your questions which will be answered and emailed back to you. If you dont want your identity or your startups identity to be disclosed that can be also kept in wrap if mentioned in mail.

Looking forward to seeing you all their and best of luck Nikhil!!!

Register HERE http://medianama.eventbrite.com/


Contact Details

E-mail:siddharthpuri@gmail.com Call Me :+91-9910444460
July 2008
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