Published on March 14, 2021
“Measured has been the most valuable marketing technology partnership we’ve added in 2020. We now have a trusted comprehensive cross-channel attribution solution, lining up media investment decisions to incremental metrics.”
“We kicked off with Measured 2 1/2 years ago to help our international DTC brands make smarter cross channel attribution decisions. They have proven to be a high value partner, adaptable to the unique requirements of each brand and region. If you are a DTC brand looking to inform media incrementality, I highly recommend Measured.”
“Cross channel attribution is a difficult problem to solve. Thankfully Measured’s creative approach rooted in incrementality measurement has enabled us to unlock cross channel attribution reporting we can trust to inform our media investment decisions.”
This week’s spotlight is on Measured. They are focused on helping brands understand the incremental value each media channel adds to their bottom line. For the last several years, many brands have looked to multi-touch attribution (MTA) as a way to help them understand how media channels work together to drive consumers through their purchase funnel. MTA solutions came with big promises and big letdowns.
With the emergence of the walled gardens over the last few years, MTA has been impossible to land with accuracy. As budgets within the walled gardens have increased, this challenge has been magnified.
Adding to the issue of true incrementality, brands have allowed the walled gardens to measure themselves. This equates to the fox guarding the hen house. Policing themselves raises two main concerns. First, it allows them to manipulate the experiments in a way that provides a favorable outcome. Second, it prevents brands from being able to compare performance in an apples-to-apples manner. With all these platforms self-reporting, brands end up with a scenario where 1+1=4. With true incrementality testing by an independent 3rd party, you end up with 1+1=2. In other words, you won’t end up with fewer dollars in the bank than what’s accounted for with the media channels.
Now we are faced with new challenges from Apple, Facebook, and Google when it comes to tracking and attribution. These challenges will make it even harder for brands to connect the dots from user interactions to website transactions. This will be especially true within Safari starting later this month. These changes will immediately limit tracking from interactions on Facebook’s in-app browser, to conversions on Safari with users on an iPhone. The challenge will grow as 3rd party cookies on Chrome impact us next year.
Is your organization prepared to capitalize on content marketing?
Start with a strategy
Digital has driven a huge appetite for content — from articles and blog posts to whitepapers and videos — and it is all too tempting for busy marketers to churn out ad hoc content in order to meet this demand. Yet like any aspect of marketing, content marketing needs a considered strategy to guide what you produce, when and why, and to inform how you distribute this. A plan is also crucial to measuring success, based on crystal clear objectives.
Pivot with technology
Factor technological evolutions into your planning too. Chiefly, 5G networks have the capability to transform the use of AR and VR in brand video content, massively upping the creativity stakes. But again, use of shiny new tech will only work if it is informed by, and aligned with, a well-defined strategy.
Agility maximises efficiency
In today’s fast moving world, an Agile approach is hugely important, with 32% of marketers reporting using some element of Agile to manage their projects. Brands can no longer plan content months in advance, due to multiple online platforms, live feeds and disappearing content. Instead, Agile methodologies help marketers to stay ahead of the game, breaking work into manageable chunks and enabling quick adaptations and a swift response. Agile working maximises efficiency and minimizes wastage.
A Cogent Thought:
Almost 70% of businesses are actively investing in content marketing.
24% of marketers planned to increase their investment in content marketing this year.
A content marketing strategy should consider audience, revenue, profit and brand. It must be firmly aligned with the growth agenda.
Evolve with shifting audience behaviors, ensuring valuable content is continually delivered to the right people at the right time, and in the right format.
A Cogent Thought:
During COVID, TV consumption increased but digital delivery accelerated on the big box and small screen.
Podcast and streaming audio listenership rose sharply while AM/FM declined.
Physical media (magazines and newspapers) consumption was down sharply.
Social Media consumption was flat with Facebook leading the way.
Media Consumption 2021
The COVID-19 crisis has led to major disruption in the global media industry. Many advertisers have paused or cut spending as their sales plunged. Meanwhile, some advertising and media agencies have laid off staff in unprecedented numbers.
In the US, the year-on-year decline in traditional media channels such as newspapers and magazines seems to have accelerated. In the UK, cinemas have shut down, reopened, and shut down again following changes to government guidance and the news that major releases would be postponed.
Data Frugality in a Post-Cookie/IDFA World
As a part of our industry soul-searching around the future of audience targeting in a post-cookie/IDFA world, the notion of data frugality should be at the forefront of everyone’s mind. The central tenet of data frugality is that companies don’t deserve unlimited access to user data. They should employ the least amount of data needed to fulfill their marketing objectives – no less, but no more.
This practice has been easier said than done in the programmatic era. Third-party cookies allowed our industry to assert that 1:1 personalized marketing was good for all. The cookie, in its tantalizing way, actually upended our ability to separate quality from quantity. Much of what third-party cookie-derived audience segments constituted were neither accurate nor particularly insightful. We all drank the Kool-Aid, going all in on practices like retargeting, practices that ultimately led us to the inevitable consumer backlash that put us in the current predicament.
A Cogent Thought:
Consider your data sources whether you buy it direct or via your vendors.
Is the data you are buying recent?
Don’t store more data than you need to, in an effort to comply with data regulations.
By considering the level of data you use to target shoppers, you will build trust and loyalty.
A Cogent Thought:
Your business and value will be stronger if you get users to opt-in.
Consumers have a role to play in making the Internet better for everyone.
Publishers need to run campaigns telling their users why they should trust them with their data.
Publishers should test what data they really need, so they only ask for what benefits the user and the business.
Make it clear to your users who you are sharing their data with. Sharing data isn’t a new business tactic, but consumers expect more transparency now so don’t try and deceive them.
“Don’t I Know You?” Is Not a Solution to the Industry’s Identity Challenges
That’s the question many publishers are asking their visitors today, and the question users are asking the brands following their digital footprints. The deprecation of third-party cookies is forcing the industry to rethink consumer relationships when it comes to identity.
Identifiers are all the rage but they only account for one side of the addressability and measurement issue. Consumer opt-in is imperative for the long-term health of our digital ecosystem. But many publishers authenticate fewer than 10% of their users—if they can authenticate any at all—highlighting a systemic problem across the publisher/supply world.
A handful of platforms have introduced their IDs as persistent identifiers in place of the third-party cookie; and some, such as Verizon Media’s ConnectID, are interoperable, translating IDs from partners like Acxiom, Experian and Epsilon. While these IDs will allow marketers to deliver addressable and audience-targeted budgets, the universe of users available tomorrow may be a fraction of what it is today because of low user logins. As legacy web/display publishers scramble to figure out ways to identify their traffic, the same cookie and ID suppression issue will soon befall connected TV (CTV), OTT, audio and in-app publishers, as well. No one is immune—so what are advertisers and publishers to do?
Unified ID 2.0 is “The most promising online identity initiative coming out of indie ad tech.”
Is scale an issue?
- The Trade Desk claims 50M users!
How will publishers respond?
- The Washington Post is participating.
- The New York Times is not participating.
Will CPMs vary based on authentication?
Criteo is working on a single sign on (SSO) consumer-facing interface for gathering email addresses.
What percentage of people can the open internet authenticate with UID 2.0?
- Low 10%
- Mid 30%
- High 80%
How will UID 2.0 impact measurement?
- Nielsen will be running a POC in their digital ad ratings product.
- Will this lean toward the need for “Data Clean Rooms” and cohort-level analysis?
- Cogent thinks so, and that is why we partnered with Measured, who created a purpose-built platform to address all these privacy changes.
Director of Digital Marketing
This week we would like to take the time to congratulate Bryan Benavides on his new role as Director of Digital Marketing at PharmaCann. Bryan has been a member of the Cogent Collective since our founding. We can always rely on his straightforward and thoughtful feedback.
Upcoming Industry Events
March 16th-April 21st: Innovation Lab 2021
March 17th: Telstra Ventures: Gaming is Eating the World
March 24th-25th: AdWeek Elevate Performance Marketing
April 14th-16th: MediaWeek