Ahead of the relaunch of WARC’s data product on Tuesday 1st October, James McDonald, Managing Editor of WARC Data, explains why ad investment needs to work harder in the media mix.

In a multichannel world, it has become harder than ever to track campaign performance, measure ROI, or to even trust third-party data. This results in millions of ad dollars wasted each year.

The problem is compounded by an environment of ad blocking, fraud, and consumer distrust, and is hazed by walled gardens, programmatic stacks and opaque practice.

Research by AlixPartners has found that $35bn of the $60bn FMCG brands invested in digital advertising was ineffective last year, while the WFA has stated that 55 cents in every programmatic dollar is paid to intermediaries in the chain, which we equated to $30bn in 2017.

Further, almost a quarter of CMOs say that showing ROI is now their greatest challenge, while 70% of brand marketers in the UK believe evaluating digital spend has become more difficult in the past five years.

It is vital that ad investment works harder in the media mix to obtain optimal reach and effectiveness. This is why at WARC we ourselves have been working hard to reinvent the way media strategists and planners use data to inform their decision making day-to-day.

To this end, I am immensely proud to share with you three of the new enhancements which will be available to WARC Data clients from 1st October. These are:

Net ad investment data by product category

WARC has collaborated with Nielsen to create a new, industry-standard measure of advertising investment data across 19 product categories in 23 markets. Using gross Nielsen totals at the macro level, we have rebuilt the series from the ground up and have harmonised these totals with the net adspend data we receive directly from the industry. Data run from 2013, cover seven display media, and two-year projections are available for all markets and categories.

Media owner profiles

We are publishing a new series of media owner profiles, which present key company financials including ad revenue, user growth and market penetration through charts, datasets and objective analysis. This saves clients the need to trawl through quarterly reporting; we update these articles as soon as the data hit the market and provide the context behind the figures for them.

Media owner profiles include those for Amazon, Google, Facebook, Baidu, Tencent and Twitter, with many more to be added for broadcasters and publishers over the coming months.

Dynamic data points

Our series of data point articles are being published dynamically from 1st October. What this means is that clients will be able to access thousands of automatically updating charts and datasets covering media spend, costs and consumption in 97 markets. Clients can save these articles and refer to them safe in the knowledge that they always have the latest, verified figures to hand.

If you would like to learn more about what we’re doing to help save the world from ineffective marketing, please register your interest and we’ll be happy to follow up.

James McDonald
Managing Editor, WARC Data