Chasing Yield: Choosing the best Digital Media

29 January 2016

Gone are the days where you could get an Adwords click for a few cents and when a free post reached >50% of your followers. Irrefutably, the digital industry is rapidly maturing worldwide. An influx of new companies are continuing to shift their marketing dollars to digital media and they are all competing for the same limited amount of users. Australia’s digital economy was estimated in excess of $79bn back in March making the fleeting time users spend online immensely valuable to advertisers.

Rapidly changing spend patterns

10 years ago the way Australian businesses spent their marketing dollars was typically this…

adspend2004

By 2014 (right column) they spent they  marketing dollars like this…

shifting_adspend1

Let’s take a closer look at the digital component.

spend_fy14

 

Much like financial investors, any respected digital marketer will change what mediums they invest their funds for maximum return on their client’s objectives. Case in point, the deteriorating fortunes of traditional advertising agencies (the only growth area seems to be their digital agency offshoots).

6 months ago the spend of a boosted post reached over 3 times as many people as it does today. Upon reviewing one of our client’s campaigns, we noticed their Adwords click price had more then trebled in 12 months. Sometimes the cost of advertising goes beyond the point where a business can make a profitable return let alone what their digital agency can optimize. So what do you do?

You Search for High Yielding Media

We’ve identified 8 major factors which have a substantial impact on the yield of digital media.

  1. Currency exchange rates
  2. Inflation (currency and click price)
  3. Reach
  4. Targeting ability
  5. General competition (industry saturation & new entrants)
  6. Advertising medium awareness (how well known it is)
  7. Ease of implementation or accessiblity of the medium
  8. Optimizing the effectiveness of the destination brand contact point (landing pages, client website, Youtube channel, Facebook page etc)

Many of these factors are outside your control except for the last three.

Get to know what’s out there

There is no excuse for not knowing which digital media could be used to reach your target market.

You’ve probably heard of these…

  • Facebook
  • Youtube,
  • Google Adwords
  • SEO
  • Instagram
  • Twitter
  • Google+
  • Forums
  • LinkedIn
  • Email Marketing

Less likely you’ve heard of these…

  • Outbrain
  • Re-marketing (Adroll, Google)
  • Display Advertising
  • Google Shopping
  • Vine
  • Content endorsements / content marketing (although this term is very general)
  • Infusionsoft sales automation

And we’d be surprised if you’ve heard of these…

  • Rich snippets
  • Buysellads
  • Tout
  • Youku
  • Weibo
  • MyFMB
  • Sonico
  • Ungagged

Implementation & Execution

Unfortunately for you, there just aren’t that many skilled Digital Marketing Specialists in Australia.

There are however, a lot of enthusiastic ‘experts’ who’ll talk  about how good they are and promise what they will do for you will change your life.

Unless you’re onto a good thing that not many other people know about, generally speaking the more technically difficult a medium is to implement, the higher the potential yield. Typically this is  implementation of the medium is a barrier to entry. However, often implementation is costly as you need a highly skilled competent digital team of people behind you. Everything in the digital landscape changes so rapidly there ends up being very few people who really know what they are talking about. Find the best specialist you can, and be prepared to pay for them.

You can identify these people easily because they…

  • are often overseas mixing with other specialists or attending educational conferences
  • are hard to find or get in contact with
  • are expensive (above and beyond the hourly rate of a mid tier lawyer)
  • have very little patience
  • are extremely busy

From our experience, some of the largest ‘big agencies’ in the industry can lack this expertise. Monthly platform changes are not uncommon so large organisations with standardised processes are ill suited to adapting to the extremely dynamic digital environment. They often hire older staff who have grown up with legacy platforms, but might not have kept their skills up to date. For a Digital Agency, the easy option is to do what you’ve always done; not always what’s best to achieve a particular outcome.

Ever tried to implement these?

  • GA Event tracking
  • Advanced SEO onsite
  • Remarketing campaign
  • Website speed optimisation
  • Google Shopping
  • Putting your product on Amazon in the USA

Not so straight forward is it?

If it’s easy, beware

Businesses without the backing of skilled specialists are even more vulnerable if they want maximum ROI on their marketing spend. Prime examples would be using Adwords Express or boosting Facebook posts. They are easy to start using, but can offer the worst targeting ability and as a result, some of the lowest yields. The same goes for using low quality content, generic hastags, clicking on anything ‘suggested’ by the advertiser and free SEO plugins.  Taking time to properly target your communication to the most appropriate users is critical, but again you need to have a high degree of proficiency in many areas in order to do this effectively.

Calculating yields?

We meticulously measure how effective they are with advanced metrics and tracking applications.  More to come on that subject next article where we will aim to cover some useful approaches with regard to point 8 – Optimising the effectiveness of your brand contact points.

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