4 Simple Tips for Higher Digital Advertising ROI

By Paul Leese | October 26, 2020 | Category: Digital Marketing Marketing

Digital advertising spend continues to rise worldwide. The pandemic has slowed it a bit for 2020, but double-digit growth is predicted to pick right back up again next year.

Digital advertising, in all of its traditional and evolving forms, is going to continue to be a cornerstone of our marketing efforts. So choosing the right vendors, data sets, ad mixes, messaging & creative, and testing, testing and more testing, are all going to be crucial in making sure your spend is yielding results.

But beyond those decisions, it’s easy to overlook some key factors that can sabotage even the most well-placed ads. As we all try to move at the speed of digital, be sure to avoid these four common pitfalls.

  1. Plan with data, not assumptions
    • Clearly articulate your objective for the ads: Determine what action you want people to take.
    • Define the audience: Don’t rush this. Get specific. The better you’ve defined your audience, the more data sets you may be able to apply and the more targeted your ads can become.
    • Partner with the right vendor: Digital advertising channels and the data available are evolving rapidly. Get plugged in with a partner who has access to multiple options so they can direct you towards the one that meets your specific needs.
  2. Match the creative to the ad space
    • Understand what you are buying: Make sure you get all of the specs. Understand where ads are appearing. Not just what sites and apps, but where on the screen and when during the viewing process.
    • Take the time to customize your ads for the space and the audience: It may be tempting to just grab some ad content that already exists and simply reformat it. But that doesn’t always work. For example, don’t take an existing video and just throw it into a pre-roll placement that allows for viewers to skip after five seconds. It might be a great video, but if it doesn’t grab someone in those first 5 seconds, they aren’t sticking around and will never know just how great it is.
  3. Create a consistent user experience
    • Think the whole way through the funnel: Don’t forget about the landing page! Where people land after seeing the ad is just as important as the ad itself.  Use consistent colors, wording, offers, etc. It’s really easy to lose people here if their expectations aren’t met.
    • Get to the point: Don’t make people search around to take the next step. This isn’t the place to tell them everything. Make it easy (and obvious) for them to know what to do next.
  4. Gather meaningful data and do meaningful analysis (This is so important!)
    • Get context, always: You need some kind of criteria to compare against so the numbers have meaning.  Is a .15% CTR good? How about a 10% increase in site traffic? Without context, you really have no idea. (And often this is the only info you get.)
    • Create your own baseline to benchmark against: You may be doing a digital campaign that is completely unique, so you may need to lay the groundwork first.
    • Focus on relevant data: This ties back to point #1. What was your goal? What action did you want people to take? Look at the data relevant to answering those questions and don’t get bogged down in the extraneous.
    • Don’t analyze in a vacuum: Get input and perspectives from others. They may see something you don’t. Or they may have access to an additional piece of information that leads to a new revelation. If you don’t reach out, you are likely to miss something.

None of these steps are overly complex. But taking the time to do them, and to do them well, will make a big impact on your digital ad spend ROI.

Paul Leese, MBA is the Executive Vice President of Keenan-Nagle Advertising, Inc. located in Allentown, PA. He specializes in marketing strategy development and execution and has over twenty years of successful experience in marketing, management, team building, media services and strategy development for non-profits, large corporations and small businesses.

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