LONDON: Brands grappling with the complexity and fragmentation of the digital media supply chain might do better to think in terms of analytics than audits if they want to improve their digital media communications.

Writing in the May issue of Admap, Dan Brown, director of digital performance at MediaSense, argues that measuring digital media as a simple commodity against market averages is a false economy.

“Organisations are now turning away from ‘audits’ and instead turning towards ‘analytics’,” he reports, in the process achieving greater transparency and improved campaign performance.

He outlines five steps to realising this, starting with the basic one of ensuring the right campaign objectives are set.

“Working with clearly defined key performance indicators (KPIs) is essential and should be the immediate focus for any planned activity,” Brown states. “KPIs must be measurable, objective-led, realistic and, most importantly, relevant to the desired outcome of the campaign.”

The next step is to get the most from an agency’s media planning – understanding why decisions on media, creative, data and technology have been recommended and challenging the media plan if it lacks evidence, logic or clarity.

And in a related development, he advises that “transparency should be a prerequisite, and all campaign plans should provide full visibility of investment on working media, talent, data and technology costs”.

Marketers also need to demand quality, brand-safe environments and to set a compliance standard for agencies to work towards. “Only then can a digital impression carry the same weight and credibility as an equivalent offline placement,” Brown says.

Finally, active campaign optimisation is essential. A core requirement for the media buyer is to identify media investment from worst- to best-performing site placements, hours and dayparts, media platforms and creative execution, all combining to optimise media performance.

“The agency should actively improve performance over the campaign duration, learning from prior outcomes to enhance future improvements, and buyers should strive to optimise campaigns as efficiently as possible.”

Sourced from Admap