This article was originally published on the ANA’s website. Click here to view.
Discussions about improving marketing effectiveness can often focus on the different measurement approaches and advanced analytics tools that marketers should employ.
While these are crucial, it is equally important to consider the goals you are targeting, the data you require to reach them, and the behaviors that will ensure quality data continually informs your investment decisions.
This can be hard, however, when data is a byword for complexity and marketers are under pressure to demonstrate effectiveness now as well as over the long term. To help you and your team overcome these challenges, here are six things we recommend:
1. Know Your Goals
Before you dive into data, take a step back. Now more than ever, marketing needs to drive growth and demonstrate its value to the wider business. One way you can do this is by ensuring your goals align with your company’s strategic objectives and KPIs.
One retailer we work with framed a campaign that focused on changing price perception in the short term around the company’s growth driver of providing inspiring, healthy, and affordable food. If your goals are more aspirational, it is particularly important to ensure they are linked to more concrete metrics.
By tying goals back to metrics such as brand perception, price per unit sold and sales volume, you get clarity about what you want to achieve and how you can grow the bottom line, and ensure your work resonates with the C-suite. Crucially, it also confirms what data you need to collect and measure.
2. Find the Gaps
Having a clear understanding of the data you have and the data you need to reach your goal is the next important step. Performing a gap analysis with a MECE (mutually exclusive and collectively exhaustive) framework is an approach that can help to work this out. If your goal is to increase sales, for example, do you have granular, near-time data about how customers respond to your marketing campaigns?
Data about how specific audience groups in different geographies behave depending on the channel, creative, partner, or weather can significantly boost effectiveness by enabling you to make tactical decisions at speed. But it’s important to recognize that not all gaps can be filled overnight. Thinking in terms of the best available data, which meets your immediate needs, and the best possible data, which builds best-in-class assets over the longer term, is a pragmatic way to improve the quality of your data.
3. Augment and Enrich
Knowing how to augment and enrich existing data sources can improve visibility, speed-to-insight, and decision-making. Marketers can do this is by considering what data sources are available beyond those related to brand and media. For example, diverse audience data can reduce bias in your analyses, supply chain data can help to ensure products are where they are needed with marketing investment to support them, while demand signals can provide more accurate sales forecasts.
It’s important to remain focused on the end goal so that you avoid overinvesting and end up with a lake of redundant data assets; you’re unlikely to need 50 different metrics to help forecast how consumer spending patterns may change, for example.
4. Be Privacy-First
While government regulation and privacy restrictions have created data privacy challenges for marketers, you can still thrive in this fast-changing environment. Being committed to a privacy-first approach is a good starting point, as it makes you balance the trust you want to build with your customers with the security and transparency needs of your organization. While it’s important for brands to know their customers in a privacy-first way, it’s equally important that consumers can feel it too.
5. Ensure Equitable Access
With a foundation of quality, privacy-first data in place, it is essential that all relevant stakeholders can access it. Data silos remain a challenge in many companies and removing them is key to delivering insights that drive growth. Technology, such as machine learning, automated data ingestion, analytics tools that sit behind firewalls, or dashboards that provide a business-wide view of data, can help to do this.
However, if it is also stuck in a silo then its potential will be severely restricted. To ensure technology adds value, more people need to have equitable access to more data. It’s crucial that all stakeholders can make “apples to apples” comparisons.
6. Prioritize Change Management
Even if you have enacted the preceding five recommendations, effectiveness over the long term will be difficult unless data-driven behaviors become embedded in your organization. We know from experience that many companies don’t focus enough on change management.
It can be a hard journey to undertake, but it is essential for success. Key ingredients include clear communication, training and support for employees who are not data specialists, controls where necessary, and ongoing analysis.
Contact Gain Theory to learn more about how you can become more data-driven.
Photo by Josh Calabrese on Unsplash.
Florida-based Maria explains why creative effectiveness is a hot topic currently, which Super Bowl ads resonated with her, and why she loves working in the data and analytics industry.
What burning question are brands you work with asking currently?
There are many questions being asked, but how to evaluate creative effectiveness, particularly on digital and social channels, is one that is coming up a lot. One of our clients spends a significant share of its budget on new creatives and changes them based on factors such as seasonality. Their marketing team is being asked if it’s worth the cost, so we’ve been working with them to find an answer. One hurdle we come against is getting the data at the creative level. To get over this, we are testing new approaches and datasets that provide the additional details we need to optimize their media.
What’s the best advert you’ve seen recently and why?
Two ads – by The Farmer’s Dog and Amazon – that were shown at last month’s Super Bowl resonated with me. Both ads feature dogs and the companionship that pets provide us and each other. I have two cats, so this is something I can relate to. It’s also worth noting that neither ad featured anyone famous, proving that you don’t need celebrity endorsement to make an impact. If more advertisers used this approach, they could save the non-working costs and maximize how much media is aired.
How did you first get into the data and analytics industry and what do you like about it?
I have always loved math and was one of the kids who did puzzles for fun. At school, I enjoyed math homework and did not see it as a chore. So, working in analytics was a natural fit for me. I love the problem-solving aspect of it, such as understanding data trends or coming up with strategic recommendations for clients.
What advice would you have for anyone considering a career in the data and analytics industry?
If you enjoy balancing details with big picture strategy, this industry may be a good fit for you. A lot of what we do is data storytelling – for example, using what we see at the lowest level of granularity to build a picture about general trends and then working out what to do with this information to optimize decision-making. If, like me, you enjoy following the latest media trends and doing puzzles in your spare time then it’s a good indication that you may have a successful career in this industry.
What person do you follow on LinkedIn that you would recommend to our readers?
I can’t say there’s a specific person that I follow. I like to scroll the feed and see what others are posting and talking about. I love reading what my old co-workers are saying as there is always something interesting to find and it helps to maintain connections.
Contact Maria to discuss any of the issues in this Q&A.
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This article was originally published on the ANA’s website. Click here to view.
What are marketers concerned about right now? Recent discussions I’ve had with CMOs from a range of industries have revealed three consistent themes:
- The business environment remains uncertain amid rising interest rates and a looming recession.
- Inflation is real for everyone, but its influences vary widely depending on the consumer segment you are targeting.
- Marketing is almost always the first budget to get cut when a firm is facing financial pressures.
Let’s go a bit deeper into each of these in turn and look at what they mean for marketers.
Central banks around the world are continuing to raise interest rates to tame inflation. In December, the U.S. Federal Reserve, the Bank of England, and the European Central Bank all raised interest rates by 0.5 percentage points. Further rises are expected.
But, alongside ongoing geopolitical and supply chain challenges, the likely result of these rises is a recession in many parts of the world. Global growth is forecast to slow to 1.7 percent in 2023, according to the World Bank, down from 3 percent just six months ago.
Consequently, there is no getting away from the fact that this puts central bankers, who are enabling demand destruction, at odds with marketers, who are in the business of demand creation.
Different Strokes for Different Folks
Nevertheless, inflation is a challenge for marketers because it is very visible to all consumers. Goods and services that are purchased often, such as food and healthcare, are particularly vulnerable to it because the price that consumers pay is a recent memory. As a result, consumers on a tight budget may try other brands or reduce consumption.
However, it is important to remember that not all consumers are the same. Some sectors do benefit despite high inflation – luxury car manufacturers Bentley and Rolls Royce both recorded record sales in 2022.
Defense versus Offense
CMOs know from experience that marketing budgets are often under threat in challenging, uncertain environments like the one we’re in. Over two-thirds, 69 percent, said budgets would either shrink or remain at 2022 levels, according to this World Federation of Advertisers report.
But they also know that you can’t go dark for long periods and give competitors the opportunity to increase their market share. There is a balance to be struck between defense and offense – the question is: Do you know what is the best approach for your business?
To build resilience, get deeper insights, and ensure you have the budget you need to succeed, there are three things you should consider.
- Use foresight to improve decision-making. One of the most effective ways to build resilience is to have a more accurate picture of what will happen in the future. If you know that certain consumers are going to be squeezed financially, then using simulation to analyze what would happen if you were to cut your prices by 5 percent, or demand signals to get a better understanding of future sales opportunities can give you an edge over your competitors.
- Get more granular audience insights. Understanding where, when and to what extent different audience groups are interacting with campaigns across all channels, creatives, and partners in near time is another differentiator. Knowing that a brand-focused creative works on a particular social media channel with, for example, gen Zs in a specific city or region can significantly boost effectiveness. To deliver this, you need the right measurement system in place.
- Give the c-suite data-informed marketing insights. Marketing metrics often struggle when moved out of marketing department presentations and into the boardroom. Linking marketing performance to sales and profits or showing what would happen to sales and profits if advertising budgets were to be cut are approaches that marketers need to ensure they resonate with senior leadership.
Contact Gain Theory to learn more about how you can implement these action points.
Photo by Christina at #WOCinTechChat
DEI champion Chris explains why amplifying diverse creators is a trend that marketers should pay attention to this year, how he plans to help colleagues fulfil their potential, and which app he uses to expand his knowledge.
What’s the best campaign you’ve seen recently and why?
I really enjoyed Virgin Atlantic’s See the World Differently campaign. Featuring the song I Am What I Am, the TV ad is a celebration and acceptance of the diverse world we live in. This theme continues in their recent gender identity policy launch. It’s a big contrast to the company’s early ads and a sign of progress towards a more inclusive world.
What do you think will be the most important marketing trend this year?
Wunderman Thompson has just released The Future 100: 2023 report, which is a fascinating read into the trends that are set to shape the year ahead. Amplifying diverse creators – Trend 37 – really grabbed my attention as a call to action. It connects the dots between the UK’s 2021 Census, which shows an increase in ethnic diversity, and The Black Pound Report 2022, which reveals the UK’s multi-ethnic community has an annual disposable income of £4.5b. There is a win-win human and commercial imperative for marketers to embrace these societal trends by accelerating their collaboration with diverse creators.
You’re part of Roots – an employee resource group at Gain Theory that champions DEI. What do you hope to achieve over the next 12 months?
Last year, we had a lot of success building awareness of issues, such as covering and health inequalities, that impact ethnically diverse colleagues. This year, our focus is on partnering with the leadership team at Gain Theory to identify actions – across the whole employee lifecycle – that we need to start or stop doing to enable ethnically diverse colleagues to show up as the best version of themselves and fulfil their potential.
You’re of Mauritian heritage – are there any inspirational Mauritians we should know about?
I’m proud to be mixed ethnicity with a White English Mum and a Mauritian Dad, whose ancestral roots are from Indian indentured labour. Mauritius is known as the melting pot of the Indian Ocean and the food is amazing! Selina Periampillai is an inspirational figure for me. She is British born with Mauritian heritage, who set up her own Mauritian supper club and food business before publishing a cookbook. To get a taste of island life, I highly recommend picking up a copy of The Island Kitchen: Recipes from Mauritius and the Indian Ocean.
Are there any other books you would you recommend?
Blinkist is a book summary app that my mentor recommended to me. The paid version gives you full access to their library of ‘Blinks’, enabling you to quickly digest the key takeaways from a wide range of constantly updated non-fiction titles. Each Blink has an accompanying audio track, so perfect to listen to whilst doing chores around the house! It’s been a powerful tool to aid my growth.
Contact Chris to discuss any of the issues raised in this Q&A.
Photo by Levi Guzman on Unsplash.
This article was originally published on Warc’s website. Click here to view.
The question of how long it takes for advertising to pay back is a pertinent one for marketers currently. With many consumers enduring a cost-of-living crisis and many businesses wary of a recession, marketing budgets are being scrutinised for potential cost savings. Advertising budgets are a big and obvious target for cuts, particularly if the return on investment is deemed to be lacking. But should they be?
The CPG industry, or FMCG if you prefer, is an interesting sector to analyze. Precise data about the amount CPG brands spend on advertising is hard to come by. According to one report, they account for 6.7% of total ad spend in the US. What we do know is that, historically, this media supports CPG companies’ listings, helps favourable positioning on shelves, makes innovations easier to launch in store, supports brand awareness and, in some cases, the company’s stock price as well.
But we also know that CPG advertising rarely pays back in the short term – that’s to say the period that an ad is live and roughly 2-3 months after. To demonstrate this, it is important to use the right metric. I recommend analyzing the ROI at margin – a metric that applies a profit margin to the incremental revenue delivered by advertising. Using this, we take account of all the costs associated with an uplift in sales to deliver a truer picture of how advertising impacts the bottom line. Gain Theory data, based on the performance of over 200 brands over the last few years, shows that the average short-term ROI at margin is only 0.43. The minimum is is 0.12, while the maximum is 0.96.
This is problematic given most marketers – over two-thirds in the US – use return on advertising spend to measure campaign outcomes and determine future ad spend. If the campaigns they are measuring do not pay back over the short term then they risk making crucial decisions based on sub-optimal data. The question is, how long does it take for CPG advertising to pay back?
A longer than expected payback
To find out, we lent on our expertise in advanced analytics and decades of experience working with CPG brands to study food and drink companies in Europe and North America. Using a statistical model – distributed lags within an unobserved components analytics framework – we were able to project how the impact of an initial response to this group’s advertising is spread out over time. A key consideration when doing our analysis, which used data from January 2022 onwards, was using an appropriate discount rate to convert future income streams from advertising back to present value.
The chart below reveals our findings, with each line representing a brand in one country. On average, it takes 94 weeks for CPG advertising to deliver a positive return at margin. This means that a campaign that ran in the Summer of 2022 could still be having an impact in Spring 2024. The earliest payback is 61 weeks, meaning even the best-performing brand does not see a return within a year. The longest payback period – for a large brand in a stable, mature (ie, low-growth) market – is 150 weeks.
It’s important to note that the greater the profit margin, the quicker the advertising pays back. Equally, when the lines begin to dip down they are still contributing a return, albeit in small quantities. However, the further we go into the future, the harder the discount rate bites.
The study threw up other interesting findings. It confirmed that more creative ads have both a stronger short-term ROI and pay back more quickly over the longer term. More worryingly, brands in mature, low-growth markets and a small number of large brands struggle to generate a return from advertising over a two-year timeframe unless it is backed by new product development into adjacent markets. As always, size also matters. With a couple of notable exceptions in high-growth categories, the bigger the brand, the quicker the advertising pays back.
The most important takeaway is that advertising does boost the bottom line of CPG companies in the majority of cases. But this needs to be tempered by the fact that it does not happen in the short term – in many cases it takes longer than a year.
Of course, some brands never see a return on their advertising. In these instances, ad spend should be cut unless there is definitive proof that this would see the brand de-listed, re-positioned on shelf, or suffer other adverse consequences.
Overall, however, CPG brands must be cognisant of the fact that while cutting advertising budgets can be an easy source of cost savings, they risk sacrificing revenue and profit both now and in the future. Armed with this knowledge, marketers can have confidence when having conversations with senior stakeholders that budgets should be more protected.
Contact Gain Theory to understand what the advertising payback is for your brand.
Photo by Andrae Ricketts on Unsplash.
Qualified yoga teacher Lindsay explains why a recent campaign for a horror movie got her attention, the joys of being in the same room as colleagues, and which podcast she listens to be a better leader.
What’s the best campaign you’ve seen recently?
One that sticks in my mind was for horror movie Smile. I don’t even watch horror movies but I am aware of this one because of the buzz that was created by the campaign. It sent actors wearing bright green shirts and smiling in a creepy way to Major League Baseball games and TV show audiences. I love how such a simple idea that has minimal cost can have such a large impact.
What’s been your highlight of 2022?
My work-related highlight was when we had an in-person company day here in North America. Maybe it’s because I’m an extrovert but getting to meet everyone in person after being physically apart since before COVID-19 was such an energy boost! It was an invaluable few days of getting to connect with everyone in person, meet new joiners, and build a sense of community together.
You lead culture activities for Gain Theory in North America – what makes a great culture in your view?
A great culture happens when you have strong company values and a purpose or goal that you can build a sense of community around and work together to reach. This year, we have been focusing on building that sense of community across our remote workforce. For example, we’ve brought everyone together on a weekly basis to chat about a topic led by different people from our leadership team. Topics have included philosophy, values, presentation skills, and yoga. We’ve called these moments ‘coffee chats’ because they are meant to be informal conversations that enable us to learn together while building a sense of community.
Talking of yoga, you’re a qualified teacher – are there any lessons from this discipline that can be applied to your work?
One component of practicing yoga is building self-awareness through things like meditation. One of my favorite yoga quotes is: “The mind is like water. When it’s turbulent, it’s difficult to see. When it’s calm, everything becomes clear.” Having a clear mind helps to drive awareness of yourself and others, which allows me to be empathetic, drive creativity and ground myself with patience. These things help me on and off the mat to be a better leader.
Are there any books or podcasts you would recommend on the subject of leadership?
I have always been a huge fan of Brené Brown, particularly her research on vulnerability and how that relates to leadership. One of her mottos is “courage over comfort” which is something you need as a leader to really listen, truly learn, and be open to drive change. She shares many other great insights in Dare to Lead, which is the title of her book and podcast. I listen to the podcast regularly as she shares new research and has guests that give new perspectives on how to be a great leader.
Contact Lindsay to discuss any of the issues raised in this Q&A.
Photo by Chelsea Gates on Unsplash.
Akhila, who works with brands such as Diageo, DFS, and Kellogg’s, tells us why she loves Cadbury ads, what can be done to improve diversity in data and analytics, and which book all marketers should read.
What’s the burning issue that brands are talking to you about?
TV advertising inflation is a big issue that brands are facing at the moment. Alongside wider macroeconomic and geopolitical trends, such as the cost-of-living crisis, rising interest rates, and the war in Ukraine, it is putting pressure on brands’ profit margins and their ability to increase marketing spend. Thanks to valuable lessons learned in the past, brands realize the importance of maintaining overall advertising investment. Using market mix modeling to enable robust, granular measurement is one way they can better quantify, forecast, and align on the optimal channel mix to achieve both short- and long-term growth targets.
What’s the best advert you’ve seen recently and why?
I have been a fan of Cadbury ads for several years. My recent favourite was the ‘Mum’s Birthday’ ad for their ‘There is a glass and a half in everyone’ campaign, which won the IPA Effectiveness Awards Grand Prix award 2022. Cadbury campaigns focus on the brand’s intrinsic purpose – the generosity within all of us – and this one clearly demonstrates how purpose that is connected to brand and product can drive affinity, equity, and sales.
When it comes to data and analytics, the industry has a long way to go in terms of diversity. What can be done to improve this?
An open culture in which everyone feels they belong, and visible, inspiring role models are key to making our industry more diverse. Providing relevant training, coaching, and formal mentorship programmes can also help to drive change, although this will take time.
I think it’s vitally important that the executive leadership, diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) councils, and employee resource groups (ERGs) work in harmony. Executive leaders need to be the role models of the diverse and inclusive organisation they aspire to become – we must be aware, ready to learn or confront our own blind spots and our own habits. For their part, DEI councils need support from the leadership and have clear objectives, outcomes, and actions. Meanwhile, ERGs can provide a safe space and sense of community and belonging for members of underrepresented communities. Here at Gain Theory, we have two ERGs dedicated to diversity – Lumena inspires, empowers, and supports our women, while Roots champions greater ethnic and cultural inclusivity.
Beyond this, change at the grass-roots level is needed too. More awareness around DEI at schools will encourage more applications in STEM subjects to universities from people with diverse backgrounds.
What book would you recommend to our readers and why?
How Brands Grow by Byron Sharp is a must-read for anyone interested in marketing or effectiveness. It would be fair to say this book had a disruptive effect among both marketers and academics. The author’s views about the importance of new customer acquisition driven by increased mental and physical availability, resulting in behaviourally loyal buyers, are seminal.
Contact Akhila to discuss any of the issues raised in this Q&A.
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This article was originally published on The Drum website. Click here to view. You can listen to the related podcast ‘How are marketers balancing privacy and personalisation?’ on Spotify and Apple Podcasts.
Measuring the effectiveness of media campaigns over the short term continues to be a significant challenge for marketers. On the one hand, privacy regulation and changes to how tech companies manage data have rendered solutions such as multitouch attribution (MTA) obsolete.
On the other, marketers are still under pressure to make sure every ad dollar works as hard as possible amid macroeconomic uncertainty and consumers moving into an expanding universe of digital platforms.
The good news is there is an approach that can square this circle and deliver granular, privacy compliant insights when marketers need them.
An uneven global playing field
Although Google has again pushed back the date on which third-party cookies will be phased out in its Chrome browser, the direction of travel remains clear. Moves by the world’s largest technology companies to limit the extent to which online consumer behaviour can be tracked on their platforms demonstrate that the destination is a privacy-first world.
At the same time, regulators around the world continue to bear down on companies that do not comply with a smorgasbord of privacy legislation. The UK’s Information Commissioner’s Office fined a catalogue retailer £1.48 million for breaking data protection and electronic marketing laws in October, for example.
The implications for MTA, which has promised to determine the value of each digital touchpoint an individual consumer makes on the way to a sale, are clear – it is no longer fit for purpose in a world where access to user-level data is no longer guaranteed.
But marketers remain unsure about the best way forward. While 92% of CMOs at multinational companies are prioritising an ethical approach to their use of data, half do not know what this means when it comes to the processes and practices they need to apply both internally and across their marketing supply chains, according to a World Federation of Advertisers report.
The power of granular geographic data
Access to privacy compliant data that enables all media to be measured and optimized on a timescale that gives marketers the insights to demonstrate the effectiveness of their campaigns is possible.
The glue that underpins this data is geography. Think about the delivery information that accompanies every ad placement. Whether it’s a 15-second TV commercial that runs on a particular network during a specific time slot, a digital display ad that features on a dedicated section of a website, or a paid social media campaign, each contains information about where the individual media impressions were served.
In the UK or US, for example, delivery metrics for every ad placement can be accessed at the postcode or Zip Code level. Crucially, this data does not contain personally identifiable information (PII). Unlike MTA, this means that it is compliant with data protection regulation by default.
When you layer key KPIs, such as sales metrics, and other factors, such as local economic conditions, promotions, and weather on top, you can start to build up an accurate picture of how your campaigns are performing across a large, statistically significant number of micro-geographic areas.
What not everyone realizes is that there is relative homogeneity at a postcode or ZIP code level – in other words, there are striking similarities between people who live close to one another. This means that marketers can compare how ads resonate in micro-geographies based on key characteristics, such as age, gender, income, occupation, and more.
Want to compare how successful your paid social campaign was with high-income males in one city versus another? Geographic media delivery data combined with other privacy compliant information enables you to analyze its impact at this granular level.
Introducing foresight into your marketing strategy
But as well as providing you with hindsight about the past, these insights can also help you with present and future campaigns. Getting information in near time – via data automation and advanced modelling methods – allows us to understand performance across different geographies. This means you can optimize campaigns on the fly. If an advert is working in well in one area but not another, for example, or with one audience but not another, you could change the underperforming creative unit or pull the campaign entirely and reallocate the budget.
By understanding audience performance across micro-geographies, you can improve who you target in the future and maximize performance. To enable this, it is important to focus on audience attributes that are buyable within programmatic media platforms. These attributes ensure that your measurement-to-insight-to-activation loop is a complete circle.
Crucially, all this can be done while using data that is compliant with a privacy-first approach to build trust with consumers.
One global automotive manufacturer used Sensor, Gain Theory’s multichannel attribution solution, to measure and optimize across omnichannel campaigns that aimed to increase test drive numbers and, ultimately, sales of a specific vehicle. By identifying demographic attributes to target and household income filters to apply, Sensor was able to explain car-buying behaviour and media responsiveness. All told, test drives grew 18% and $56 million in incremental sales were generated.Measuring the effectiveness of media and advertising may feel like a complex and daunting prospect in the current data and privacy environment, but a tried and test approach, based on granular geographic data, can deliver improved results for advertisers and peace of mind to consumers.
Request a Sensor™ demo by contacting us here.
Russell, who has a focus on new media measurement at Gain Theory, shares his thoughts on key issues in marketing effectiveness, his favorite current advert, and the commentator he leans on to get a fresh perspective.
What important marketing effectiveness question should readers be asking themselves today?
How do I unify and centralize my approach to marketing measurement without compromising on timeliness and depth of insights? Centralizing measurement can enable coordination and accountability, but it can also slow things down and force data and insights to be aggregated. A thoughtful long-term data strategy and approach to measurement can help to solve these challenges. It can yield deeper insights that are timely, not just at the market and channel level, but at the individual ad placement and audience level too.
What are you working on currently that excites you?
The current release of Sensor Audience – a new audience insights capability within our Sensor attribution tool – has been super exciting and rewarding to work on. Increasingly, brands need to know how they can construct new audiences that are based on media responsiveness, as well as brand propensity, and then measure their in-market performance. Sensor Audience makes this possible, so being able to deliver this to our clients makes me feel like we’re arming them with a complete set of measurement solutions.
What’s the best advert you’ve seen recently?
I liked the Toyota “Keeping up with the Joneses” ad. It was a very clever and fun way to deliver a message that spanned generations.
Which person is worth following to get a fresh industry perspective?
I enjoy NYU Stern Professor of Marketing Scott Galloway. Much of his commentary covers the intersection between business and culture, and he doesn’t shy away from difficult topics. I agree with his view that the most important part of making a prediction is forcing yourself to think through the logic of why your prediction is what it is. This is critical in our business as we build our planning and forecasting tools to deliver insights for clients.
Who inspires you and why?
Our junior team members at Gain Theory. Their ability to adapt and grow during COVID-19 – a time when regrettably we couldn’t provide enough face-to-face mentorship to them – has been incredible to witness. Their enthusiasm for our product roadmap and our vision for what Gain Theory can become is also inspiring. A major challenge in analytics is analysts feeling like they do the same thing day in, day out. But the enthusiasm of our new recruits tells me that they see Gain Theory as a place where they will continue to learn for years to come.
What’s the best piece of career advice you’ve received?
“It’s a marathon not a sprint” is quote from every good boss I’ve ever had, but it doesn’t mean “slow and steady wins the race”. Marathons are highly strategic and feature moments that are extremely intense as well as moments that allow you to gather yourself and think. To win a marathon you must be highly conditioned, in both mind and body, and you must be a tactician.
If you’d like to speak to Russell about new media measurement, please click here
Photo by Prateek Katyal on Unsplash.
This article was originally published on the Ad Age website. Click here to view.
I spend a lot of time talking to marketers about how to make their media investments work harder and reduce the pressure they’re under from other stakeholders. Given current events, it’s no surprise that the need to understand their audiences better is front and center of these conversations.
In a recent article, the International Monetary Fund noted that the global economy is facing “an increasingly gloomy and uncertain outlook” amid slower growth, higher-than-expected inflation and war in Europe. The repercussions of this backdrop for consumers are profound: Their purchasing power is reduced. Marketers who are experiencing media inflation and budget cuts themselves are facing implications that are just as clear. They need more reliable and timely insights about audiences’ changing behaviors to help their organizations through these testing times.
This uncertain picture is complicated further by ongoing changes to the data economy. As two MIT Media Lab professors wrote in this Harvard Business Review article, consumer mistrust, government action and market competition are converging to force businesses to make fundamental changes to how data is sourced, managed and used.
Unlocking faster, smarter, deeper insights
Marketers know all too well the challenges surrounding this trend. For example, from a measurement perspective, multitouch attribution tools are no longer fit for purpose in a privacy-focused world. While marketing mix modeling remains a reliable way to measure the long-term, strategic impacts of media campaigns, what’s missing is a way to measure where, when and to what extent consumers are interacting with campaigns and delivering growth over the short term.
The good news is that there is a solution to help solve this conundrum. Here at Gain Theory, we’ve developed Sensor, an innovative tool that provides deep insights about audiences that marketers can use to optimize all their media on a weekly or monthly basis.
Sensor has been delivering real-world results for several years. One multinational beverage company, which measures the relative effectiveness of its media spend across digital platforms, credited Sensor with delivering a 30% year-on-year improvement in media ROI.
In addition, a global automotive manufacturer, which used Sensor to measure and optimize an omnichannel marketing campaign, saw the campaign deliver $56 million in additional revenue and a 2.5% uplift in margin.
Crucially, companies like these are benefiting from being able to measure the impact their media investments are having on audiences with privacy-compliant data.
Want to compare how successful your paid social campaign was with high-income males in Miami versus low-income males in San Francisco? Using granular geographic data, every ad placement on every channel can be analyzed on a daily basis. It can also be combined with other data such as local weather, economic indicators and promotions to create deeper insights.
Want to know how effective your radio advertising is at driving different audience groups to shop at your online store, compared with ads served on podcasts? Thanks to cross-channel analysis, this data can be displayed on a dashboard that enables marketers to make smarter investment decisions.
Want to see if millennial moms and Gen X moms respond differently to TV ads about the same product but with different creative on two different networks? You can measure the effectiveness of ad placements at a number of levels, including creative, network and partner, to understand how each one resonates with a specific audience group at a granular level.
Three key business benefits
Having a more in-depth and timely understanding of who is interacting with your media, as well as how and when, enables you to do several important things to drive growth.
First, you can act tactically to improve ROI—for example, determining if a campaign, channel, creative or network is resonating with one audience group but not another, so you can change the one that is underperforming or reallocate the budget.
Second, you can make investment decisions more quickly by gaining access to relevant data in a matter of weeks.
Third, you can build trust by using data that is compliant with a privacy-first approach to advertising. As every marketer knows, this is now a strategic necessity.
Request a Sensor™ demo by contacting us here.
Photo by Ryoji Iwata on Unsplash.