Calling its effort a ‘Campaign Performance Audit’ (CPA), CBS says CPA will help sponsors maximize network TV buys in enhancing return on investment. CBS has been testing CPA with some advertisers since last fall.
CPA includes effectiveness of marketers' messages, maximizing weekly reach and "recency," while offering more “precise targeting and favorable context.”
CBS says it will use a full range of Nielsen analytics services -- Nielsen Catalina Solutions, Nielsen Buyer Insights, Nielsen MotorStats, Nielsen MRI Fusion, Nielsen Brand Effects and Nielsen Cambridge Media Demand Landscape -- to deliver on the campaign audit.
All this will help marketers when it comes to planning and purchasing a TV media buy, giving them a “scorecard showing the measurable return on investment of the campaign.”
David Poltrack, chief research officer for CBS Corp. and president of CBS Vision, states: “With CPA, we are offering clients a new way to analyze Nielsen’s performance-based data to achieve ideal reach, frequency, targeting and placement for clients looking to craft a campaign that delivers the optimal return on their television advertising investment.”
Jo Ann Ross, president of network ad sales for CBS Television Network, said CPA “offers clients tangible and proven tools to ensure dollars spent on CBS are the most effective and powerful of their overall ad spend.”
An interesting step forward by CBS. If it works, advertisers will get a reading of how effective their network TV buys are in terms of generating sales or share of market lifts as well as other relevant metrics, instead of simply counting up 18-49 0r 25-54 eyeball "impressions" ( GRPs ) and ignoring the much more telling marketing subtleties. Obviously, it will take time to develop benchmarks and learn to "read" the data particularly, where the contributions of different networks are being assessed. It my be that the latter, becomes less important than merely looking at entire media schedules, comparing one mix and scheduling pattern with another to obtain the maximum impact. Congratulations, Dave.
When will the network start guaranteeing buys based on these "tangible and proven" tools? Or have they started already?
Darrin, obviously I can't speak for CBS, but I assume that some of these metrics are not going to be guaranteed, while others, such as the average sales lift per unit of audience---probably some combination of reach and frequency----would require time to develop norms to guide the network. These would probably be determined in conjunction with certain cooperating advertisers, then used as benchmarks for more expanded guarantees on a category by category basis. Meredith has done similar work in the magazine field, starting with a few advertisers, then, once it knows, more or less, what to expect, using this knowledge as the basis for sales/SOM lift guarantees on a wider basis. Of course, we are talking mainly about packaged goods and certain other categories, where sales results can be tracked, independently, in conjunction with audience indicators. Some types of ad campaigns may not be amenable to this approach.
While applauding anything that moves us to better accountability and proof of performance the optimizing of reach within a network schedule is of dubious value when we need to look at reach holistically across all TV and ultimately all media channels. In a perfect world (or a least a less imperfect world) we would have this for all TV in one nice neat Nielsen package.
dorothy, I'm afraid that you may be asking for too much in this case. Obviously, whatever CBS does will be self-serving, especially as regards documenting the value of all of its audience, including the oft- forgotten over 50 age group. Still, whatever knowledge is garnered, even if not fully representative of all possible combinations of TV that an advertiser might employ, will be very informative.
Darren, say hi to Larry for me. How are Sam and Tabitha?
Ed- I think Dorothy's point is that unless it's a "process" that is widely held/recognized by the other major players and the leading measurement service, it will be difficult for a major shop to process against that data. As an employee of CBS I'm very proud of the fact that we've taken a lead in connecting brands with audiences in a better fashion then is currently being done. Dorthy- If I miss stated your statement my apologies :-)
Jon, the trick in all of this is whether the research will seek to prove that a particular network or channel generates significantly better sales, awareness---- whatever----results at , say, a 50% reach and 4.0 frequency, than a similar buy on another platform. If we go down that road, it becomes inevitable that there will be no consensus as to the value or relevance of various "impact" or ROI metrics, due to the natural instinct of each seller to try to top the competition by using the most favorable ----to it---metrics. I think that it's up to the agencies ----probably individually, rather than in concert---to determine what is most meaningful for each of their major clients, rather than seeking a uniformly acceptable formulation. This is what eventually happened with the application of so-called "engagement" metrics in the TV audience guarantee system.