Despite a slight dip in ad spending in 2020 due to COVID, most CEOs remain optimistic with an overwhelming 95% expecting the economy to bounce back in 2021. The attitude of leadership in any organization has a certain trickle down effect, and this staunch optimism means that global digital ad spending is expected to also bounce back. eMarketer’s Global Digital Ad Spending Update Q2 2020 has the data to back me up: they’re showing a nominal 2.4% growth this year, but are projecting growth rates as high as 17% in 2021.
It’s no secret that influencer marketing will represent the majority of this growth: 74% of marketers already report dabbling in influencer marketing in 2020 and the industry is expected to scoop $10 Billion in 2021. Every media buyer needs to have a game plan in place on how to tackle the multiple platforms, identify and obtain partnerships with the best talent, and benchmark results to remain on top of the competition.
If you immediately googled cheat sheets and tricks of the trade, we’ve got you covered with our ultimate media buyer checklist for B2C brands - B2B coming next week (subscribe here to get notified!). This checklist covers the basics of marketing strategy all the way to tracking and measuring results and everything in between - you’re welcome <3
Happy hunting, media buyers everywhere!
Identify your target audience
Where do they get their information?
Here’s some ways you can collect this data about your target audience:
- How to Get Traffic Analytics for a Website You Don't Own
- First-party vs third-party cookies: why first-party is the way to go
- Google Analytics (and alternatives)
- Alexa Ranking
What are the demographics of the product sites they visit?
What age/gender/ethnicity/country is this product targeting and appealing to?
How does that relate to my audience?
What about this product interests them and how does that align with our brand?
Identify your marketing goals
What’s your endgame?
- Lead generation, new business
- Lead/sales generation, existing business
- Direct product sales
- Freemium installs/downloads
- General brand awareness
A tool that will help you with the rest of this checklist, a Sponsorship Intelligence solution of some kind is becoming an essential. Every job, from recruiters to engineers to teachers, are implementing more softwares and AIs to analyze more data and make conclusions in real-time on what works. Marketers have no lack of options when it comes to platforms that boast the best data on influencer trends, so we highly recommend checking out our rundown on competitors here.
A good Sponsorship Intel platform MUST have:
- Ability to track brand adspots across multiple platforms - gives you the ability to understand budget size vs. allocation and multichannel strategies.
- Ability to view / hear the adspot AND view the full content stats of the influencer
- Geolocation: while influencers amass followings worldwide, as a marketer you need to know who in the world is going to be tuning into your adspot.
- View schedule/cadence of sponsorships
- Search by custom keywords to go beyond Content Category
If you’re still unsure which platform fits your needs, touch base with us - you’ll get a free demo of the ThoughtLeaders intel platform.
Measuring the results
- # sales
- # phone numbers or email addresses
- # meetings booked
- # downloads/installs
- # site visitors
- # repeat site visits
- # views of content/interactions with brand
It’s all about the ROAs, baby. When testing a channel, in a perfect world you will hit your targets - but what you should always be looking for is signs of view engagement with your product. For example, if you have decent click-to-purchase rates but you didn’t hit your target CPA, you might have overpaid. From this you’ve learned that you can run more videos on that channel but need to negotiate a lower price. Now you can hit your targets!
It’s essential to define metrics to measure results by and determine the appropriate time frame. Consider the platform that the ad is appearing on: evergreen content will see views/clicks/sales over weeks, whereas other digital displays have a much shorter lifespan. In general, track and measure data from the 30 days after a podcast or YouTube sponsorship has launched. Here’s an amazing first account of a company who tried podcast marketing - they didn’t start off with the correct goals and had to adjust their plan, losing thousands of marketing dollars in the process. *hint hint* Do it right the first time ;)
The technical stuff: structuring your ads
- Traffic to site flowing at an even pace
- Average media spend per day + max budget per day
- Total cost for campaign/adspots purchased
- Campaign start/stop dates
- Suppression list needed?
If partnering with any creatives, you’ll also need:
- (IO) signed and returned
- Out clause
- Types of creative agreed on
- 3rd party tracking is working
How are you paying?
Programmatic ads = PPC, pay per click
Some podcast/YouTube/display = CPM and CPV
Once you’ve begun to publish content and your ad campaigns have gone live, you’ll need to test various types of content to understand how to convert better.
You’ll want to ensure that you’ve properly coded your key pages for tracking once you’ve secured your ad content on 3rd party sites.
It’s even recommended to test your own site tracking before running a campaign: you can visit your site and verify the source code so you know the tracking has been set up. Then you should check your internal data to see if your site visits registered in the tracking and what data was collected. Then ensure to suppress your IP from the data so it’s not skewed when the actual campaign runs.
For those site visitors that didn’t convert, you’re able to retarget. Read up on that here: What Is Retargeting and How Does It Work?
You’ll need to ensure that:
- Privacy policies are compliant in regards to retargeting and collecting/sharing of data
- Add the right follow-ups (Sequential Funnel Retargeting) to your funnels
- Mobile funnels optimized for OS type