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New outcome-focused metrics for media - Executive Magazine

May 8, 2008
Marketing: New metrics for mediaExecutive summary: In a Booz Allen Hamilton survey with the Association of National Advertisers 62 percent of marketers would spend more on digital media if better cross-platform metrics existed to gauge advertising effectiveness. New technologies will support a shift in audience measurement from estimates to data that is closer to (and in some cases is) actual census data — in other words, to real rather than projected results, writes Strategy + Business. ...Marketers demand more effectiveness and efficiency from their media buys. Digital media are reaching critical mass with consumers. The promise of more granular or even real-time data capture of consumer response to advertising is tantalizingly close to realization, writes Strategy + Business on basis of Christopher Vollmer's new book, "Always On: Advertising, Marketing and Media in an Era of Consumer Control" (McGraw-Hill, 2008). Vollmer is a vice president with Booz Allen Hamilton in New York and leads the firm’s work in North American media and entertainment. . “Lately, marketers have become less interested in the number of eyeballs that see a screen or hands that touch a page and more interested in the behavior of the owners of those hands and eyes, and how the ad message connects with them,” says David Verklin, CEO of Carat Americas.

The proliferation of media - from print, radio, and TV to today’s Web, cell phones, podcasts, GPS systems, video games and PDAs -and the fragmentation of audiences have rendered the traditional currency of advertising — audience exposure, or “reach” — a much less compelling measure of media value than it was before. The very prospect of new metrics has contributed greatly to the popularity of digital media among advertisers. In a recent Booz Allen Hamilton survey conducted with the Association of National Advertisers, 62 percent of marketers surveyed said that they would spend more on digital media if better cross-platform metrics existed to gauge advertising effectiveness.

The new form of outcome-based metrics combines the experience from below-the-line media with technological innovations in measurement, especially involving television. Not all media can, or ever will, match the direct-response metrics of Google. But the broad evolution of these new, more granular, more precise metrics will drive profound changes in the practice and culture of marketing and brand advertising in all media. New technologies will support a shift in audience measurement from estimates to data that is closer to (and in some cases is) actual census data — in other words, to real rather than projected results.

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