Marketing Is Now Even More Exciting - Here's Why!

Fellow Online Spinner Dave Morgan recently wrote a columnon whether awareness and attribution can live together in an advertising-centric world.  His assumption was “yes” — and he cited Sharon O’Sullivan from Discovery Communications (and others) as proof that media execs feel the same way.  It was refreshing to see.

I’d like to take things a step further.  I would simply add that if you don’t feel this way, you should be planning your retirement.

We’ve been carrying the flag of “brand response” in the digital space for many years — pretty much ever since we realized that hanging our hats on click-throughs was a bad idea (for background, we realized that about 10 seconds after we first said it).  Brand response has been a term applied to the marriage of measurement and awareness metrics.



I’ve been a massive proponent of creating accountability in all forms of advertising.  I really dislike marketers who create metrics to validate their own existence, and click-through has always felt like one of those.  It was something we wished was a proxy metric for engagement.  It never truly was, but was heralded as “one of our metrics” from the beginning, so people latched onto it.  

Dave (and the rest of the industry leadership) is right.   Attribution and awareness can live hand in hand. All forms of media are now converging on the methodologies innovated by digital media as a means of understanding true effectiveness via accountability.  Media mix models are changing, algorithms are being adopted, and new insights are being applied.  Mobile is becoming a connective tissue to ensure exposure and proximity to messages, and the guesswork is being removed.  It’s an exciting time to be a marketer!!

Can you just take a moment to understand that what you’ve theorized for many, many years can now be proven?  That’s a fulfillment of years of work — and it should be viewed as exciting rather than as a frightening idea.   The big idea is still important, but how that idea is translated to media is significantly more important than it ever was, and how that big idea performs on various channels is of the ultimate importance.  

Dave asked the question “What do you think?” at the end of his post.  I think it’s about time!  I think it’s about time media execs embrace metrics and feel confident that their offerings are driving measurable value  — and I love that smart media execs are coming out and saying so.  With the upfront season approaching, more money will be spent in TV this year than ever before.  At the same time, more money will be spent in digital media than ever before.  How is all of that happening?  It’s happening because we can prove the value of digital media now!  

That’s why I’m excited.  How can you not feel the same way?

1 comment about "Marketing Is Now Even More Exciting - Here's Why!".
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  1. Tom Cunniff from Tom Cunniff, April 29, 2015 at 12:26 p.m.

    The problem is when we confuse attribution and accountability. “How much should I spend on this medium vs that one” is a marketing mix question, not an attribution question. What we really want to know is, “which programs perform?” But since there are so many potential sources of influence along the path to purchase for a can of soda, we'll never really know with precision what worked. So everybody shrugs and gins up data to prove whatever they'd like to prove. Personally, I don't believe attribution can be perfected for many brands -- nor do I think it is important to get it perfect. We just need to be where consumers are, and whether they in digital is far beyond debate.

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