Archive for the ‘Online Advertising’ Category

What it takes for an ad to go virali

July 2, 2008

iMedia Connection

Getting an ad to go viral is no easy feat. Here are some pointers on what it takes to get your ad picked up by the masses.

It’s frustrating when techies the world over spread the news of the arrival of a marginally improved Apple iPhone, while you sit in your office wondering why they can’t do the same thing and spread the word for your client’s new brand of breakfast cereal.

What’s more, often your client expects you to sprinkle viral fairy dust on ad campaigns, such that people will be so enamored with the ads that they’ll email them to one another, put them on their Facebook pages and click “Send to a Friend” buttons over and over. But, as you’re painfully aware, there’s no such thing as viral fairy dust. And that’s a shame, because you wish you could get some.

It’s sometimes difficult to explain a campaign that didn’t “go viral.” Client-side marketing professionals sometimes have an inflated sense of how often their brand occupies the thoughts of Joe Consumer. You might find yourself countering with the “if the ads were good, they would have gone viral” argument.

The first step to assessing the viral effect is understanding the economics of online value exchange. The most successful viral campaigns owe their success to the extension of value in one form or another. Sometimes, the best way to (subjectively) assess viral potential is to take a step back and ask, “What value, beyond informational value, does this [ad, video, widget, etc.] extend to the end user?” If the answer is “not much,” don’t expect it to spread beyond your rabid brand enthusiasts.

Many viral success stories are the result of extending humor value. Here’s the critical piece to understand: Humor in an ad needs to be comparable to that in other content you might find online. In other words, a funny commercial is still a commercial. If you’re hoping humor value will spur a significant viral effect, the content better be funny. It’s not just competing with other commercials. It’s competing with the Segway faceplants on College Humor and the drunk college kids playing with power tools on Break. Creatively, the people who make these funny videos don’t have the constraints of being pressed for time, being governed by a series of brand guidelines, needing to pay talent or restricting themselves to “clean” gags. What makes an agency think they can make something even comparably funny operating under those restraints? There’s a reason why viral commercials tend to be “leaked” versions of things the brand would never let see the light of day.

Utility value is more easily summoned when under deadline pressure. A widget that gives viewers the ability to put celebrity headlines on their website, for instance, represents a great extension of utility value:

Give people something of value and they’ll often not mind that your brand is tagging along for the ride.

Getting back to Apple, though, the brand of viral kung fu the company practices is high-level stuff. Some bloggers and industry pundits have boiled it down to “they just have great products.” I think it’s more complicated than that.

Someone high up at Apple understands the value exchange that occurs when a brand fan is among the first to find out about a new Apple product. The value exchange is an extension by Apple of insider status in the form of early information. This incentivizes the insider to tell everybody and their grandmother that they were among the first to see the new iPhone. Since Apple is such a badge brand, both in terms of technology and style, knowing about products first garners bragging rights for those in the know. Careful manipulation of that value is what gets new Apple releases to the top of every social media site, on geek blog sites and, inevitably, into the mainstream media for free.

The X Factor: Why banners fail

May 31, 2008

iMedia Connection

 

If the media biz is a jungle, banner ads are cowardly and camouflaged. Try a plan of attack that goes in for the kill.

 

I just ran into a series of roadblocks on The New York Times, and The Washington Post, and I was thinking: Are they just bad banners times two, or is there something more to this format that offers value to advertisers?

Well, I know the answer because I have run multiple campaigns for multiple brands over the years, but I’ll make you wait for that. First, let’s define what they are, and what they are not. I’m tired of hearing people use terms loosely in our industry. Precision is necessary for understanding. Without it, we’d all be monkeys poking each other with sticks. Actually, when it comes to understanding internet advertising, many people still are. Well, maybe they’re not even that good. How about “flesh pods with arms.” That’s a little more accurate. Alas, but I digress.

If you come to a site, and before you enter the site, you have to sit through an ad, that is an introstitial. If you are on the site and have to sit through an ad when going to a different section, that is an interstitial. But, if you are on a page and all the ads on the page are from the same advertiser, that is a roadblock. I often hear people in the industry group these three together and it only creates confusion for those flesh pods with arms.

So, why would an advertiser use a roadblock? First, the problem with banners. You may know my views on the banner format from my previous rantings, but is the roadblock any better? Or are you just flushing double your money down the drain? Well, it all depends on your business model and your objectives. Wow, that’s a cop-out and a bit MOTO (master of the obvious). I’ll explain whether they are useful, to what businesses, and how — after a bit of an explanation of the overall failings of the banner.

One of the greatest failings of the banner format is that it is peripheral to the content and not interruptive. We all evolved as predators, regardless of what the leaf-chewing members of our populace think. Why is that relevant? Well, evolutionary biologists will tell you that predators evolved with peripheral vision that picks up movement better than what’s right in front of you. And, it picks up ticks in movement and changes in speed better than smooth, clean movement.

Where are banners located? Ah, now you’re starting to get it — Have. The. Banner…….[pause] React. [pause] [pause] [pause] Move. [pounce] Like it’s stalking prey. The consumer’s eye will instinctively glance to see what it is. Don’t be impressed with your smooth, animated banner approved in isolation of the consumer. It looks nicer but will not achieve your main objective: the attention of the consumer.

What a roadblock does is focus that attention. There are many sites like The New York Times and The Washington Post that offer compelling roadblock experiences. On the Times, you can buy two-hour blocks of roadblocks. On rich content sites, it’s even more important to capitalize on peripheral focus due to the engagement of the user to the content, in the center of the page.

It’s a very effective strategy depending on your business model. Ok, there is the cop-out again. Let me explain a simple way to approach it. If you’re a click-based business doing direct response to drive people into a funneled sales experience, then often a roadblock will not provide the delta increase in your clickthrough rate necessary to justify the additional cost.

However, if you supplement that advertising with single banners on the site and look at the combined effectiveness, you will often find that you get a significant increase in overall response rate. If you are a business that believes that view-through has value, you can prove that a roadblock is a far superior format for your business to a single banner for accomplishing your goals. An impression, remember, does not mean that the consumer ever saw the ad, it just means that the ad server delivered the “opportunity” to see an ad.

Roadblocks dramatically increase that opportunity beyond the additional cost required. Remember, aim for peripheral focus in your ad creation and increase the effectiveness of your campaigns. Don’t create ads that annoy us.

Do-It-Yourself Display Ads

May 31, 2008

Wall Street Journal

By SHIRA OVIDE

Much of the valuable online-ad real estate is sold the old-fashioned way: through a salesperson.

But now start-ups and major Internet players such as Facebook Inc. are giving advertisers the option of planning, buying and tracking online-ad campaigns all on their own. Just as the ability to buy plane tickets online steered business away from travel agents, the self-service options promise to shake up the $20 billion online-advertising market.

Google Inc. built a $185 billion company largely thanks to its self-service model for buying the online text ads that show up in Web searches. The next front in do-it-yourself is the display-ad market. Display ads are expected to be 40% of the online-ad market in coming years. Until recently, such ads were too expensive to buy and too difficult to create for many companies.

“In order to really move into large masses of advertisers, display advertising has to be easier and simpler,” said Ajay Agarwal, managing director of Bain Capital Ventures. “Google did this with search advertising. We think the same thing has to happen with display.”

The self-service options have the potential to bring huge numbers of new advertisers and sites into online advertising, including small firms that currently find it too difficult or expensive to advertise online, or to advertise at all.

Andy Dunn is one of the new do-it-yourself-ers. Mr. Dunn is chief executive of Bonobos Pants, an online clothing company that says it makes “pants for real guys,” aimed at men who want well-tailored and fashionable clothes but hate to shop in stores. The company, which the 29-year-old Mr. Dunn launched last fall with a classmate from the Stanford Graduate School of Business, initially didn’t do much to market its wares. “We think advertising is pretty wasteful for a company like ours,” Mr. Dunn said.

But for a pants line aimed at Chicago Cubs baseball fans, Bonobos took a chance on Facebook’s new self-service ad system. In less than five minutes, Bonobos created ads that would be seen only by young men in the Chicago area who identified themselves on their Facebook profiles as Cubs fans. With a picture of the “Cubbie blue” pants — named Clarks, after one of the streets surrounding the Cubs’ home of Wrigley Field — and simple ad taglines like “pants for Cubs fans,” the ad was seen more than 250,000 times. Quickly, Bonobos sold out of Clarks, at $120 a pop. Total cost for the ads: about $63.

Mr. Dunn said that next time, he may spend thousands of dollars more on the Facebook ads. “It’s so economically compelling that we can’t ignore it,” he said. “This was five minutes of our time, and we sold through these very specific pants that otherwise we’d have a hard time finding our audience.”

Facebook is only one of a rising number of self-service ad options. There are new entrants such as AdReady Inc., AdBrite Inc. and AdItAll LLC. MySpace, like Facebook, is offering do-it-yourself ads that marketers can tailor to individual interests on the social-networking site. (MySpace, like this newspaper, is owned by News Corp.)

Time Warner Inc.’s AOL Internet unit and Google have new self-service ad options for the opposite side of the equation — for Web publishers who want to attract advertising to their sites.

The rising number of self-service options underscores the expanding market for display ads, the graphic- and video-heavy ads in fixed spots on a Web page. The market for display ads reached $5 billion in 2007, according to market-research firm eMarketer Inc. That is far less than the estimated $8.6 billion in spending for text ads tied to online search. But in coming years, the mix is expected to tilt in favor of display ads, thanks to the rise of online video and the increasing push of brand marketers such as car companies into the display market.

But for the majority of mostly small- and medium-size businesses, it remains too difficult and expensive to buy display ads. To create an ad, businesses have to navigate the 15 standard sizes and half dozen standard formats and design something that will be eye-catching. They have to pick which Web sites or networks to buy ad space from, test multiple ads, track which ones draw the best consumer responses and adjust marketing campaigns accordingly. Doing this alone is daunting, and paying an ad agency to do it might cost thousands of dollars. Sites such as Yahoo Inc. often require advertisers to promise they will spend tens of thousands of dollars a month on advertising.

“There’s no real solution for the smaller advertiser who wants to enter the display market,” said Aaron Finn, chief executive of AdReady, one of the new companies offering access to the market. Mr. Finn used to head marketing for Classmates.com, one of the biggest buyers of online ads, and launched AdReady last fall with backers such as Bain Capital LLC’s Bain Capital Ventures.

AdReady promises to ease the headaches and guesswork and to lower the costs associated with buying display ads. A Ford dealership in California can pick from a pool of templates and customize an image of a revolving Ford car with the dealership logo and contact information. Then, the dealer can buy ad space through AdReady on major Web sites targeted to reach only Web surfers in California. The system suggests tweaks, such as making the ad background purple rather than white, that have proven to draw more people to click on ads. Advertisers can spend as little as $20, and AdReady is paid a cut of the ad buy.

AdReady and other services also give advertisers the ability to tie ad spending to results. For example, an advertiser could see how many people viewed a car ad and how many people clicked on it. The car dealer could then decide it wants to turn off the ads that received the fewest clicks and run more of the ads that were more effective.

By drawing in new ad buyers, the self-service options also aim to address one of the nagging problems with the display-ad market: cheap prices.

As a flood of new Web sites compete for consumers’ eyeballs, sites such as Facebook are having difficulty raising prices for ads. The cost for reaching a thousand Web visitors can be as little as a few cents on Facebook or MySpace. Reaching the same number of viewers of a prime-time TV show can cost $30.

By widening the pool of advertisers vying for display space, sites believe they can increase the prices for their ads. Facebook Ads is seeing a huge influx of first-time Internet advertisers, according to Tim Kendall, director of monetization at Facebook.

Along with innovations such as ad networks, self-service options are hoping to do for the display-ad market what Google did for search: make it more accessible, cheaper and, ultimately, a much-larger business.

“There’s a huge market that’s still being untapped,” Mr. Finn said. “I think you’re going to open up the floodgates.”

Startups Explore ‘Interactive’ Alternatives to Old-Fashioned Banners

May 31, 2008

Marketing VOX

Slowdown in the online ad market has many startups — which count on ad revenue to push otherwise unprofitable ideas onto the production floor — seeking alternatives, reports the Wall Street Journal.

Models of particular interest are ad formats that add “value” to the “user experience” instead of operating on a pure pay-per-click basis.

meebo, for example, makes it possible for users to appropriate photos and graphics from ads for their profiles. This enables them to express themselves through brand or celebrity loyalty — inevitably also turning ads into memes. Ads adopted by users yield higher click-thrus than ordinary banner efforts, the company said.

In February, meebo also launched an ad network for instant messaging.

A current Glaceau campaign on Slide enables users to send virtual bottles of Vitamin Water to “Top Friends” (an independent application on the Slide network). 10 million virtual bottles were conveyed in just eight days, Slide boasted.

There are few obvious connections between interactive online advertising and real-world purchases. But one major benefit to this form of product dissemination is it is less expensive, and potentially more beneficial to brand equity, than merely paying for passive CPM-based advertising.

7 tips for higher conversion rates

May 12, 2008

iMedia Connection: 7 tips for higher conversion rates

A good call-to-action is worth its weight in gold. Interactivate’s CEO offers tips to finesse your CTA.

During the infancy of the World Wide Web, when people had more time and email was a genuine novelty, “Click here” was a darned good call-to-action (CTA). It was simple, direct and easily understood by the greenest newbie online.

Fast forward 15 years or so. Using a conversion mechanism that is approaching middle age in internet years is like using a 14K dial-up modem: not exactly highest tech. If your conversion rates are stuck at single digits, try these tips to bring your CTAs up to 21st century speed.

1. Understand the anatomy of a call to action
Every CTA is made up of three parts: 1) The actual action you want your customers or prospects to take; 2) The words you use to encourage them to take that action; and 3) The physical appearance of the CTA (typography, color selection, placement on the page, etc.). You want your CTA to be outstanding on all three counts.

2. Do “this”
Sounds obvious, but it’s surprising how fuzzy some folks are about what exactly it is they want their email reader or website visitor to do. The lack of focus is usually caused by trying to cram too many CTA eggs into one hyperlink basket. The poor customer follows a link to an all-things-to-everyone page where he must search for the relevant content. Many conversions are lost to frustrating hunting expeditions. Be clear, concise and single-minded with your CTA hyperlinks.

3. Drive action with words
Self-interest is the motivating lubricant that drives most human behavior. Responding to a CTA is no exception.

Don’t just tell your prospect what to do. Tell her what’s in it for her when she does it. This isn’t the time for guessing games or cleverness. Define the benefit or set the expectation right there in the CTA in plain, unvarnished English. Focus on verbs (action words) and eliminate all fluff. “Learn More About This Product.” “Finish Reading This Article.” “Find Your Home.” “Buy the Shoes.” “Look at the Floor Plans.” “Read the Recipe.” “Compare This Product to Others.” “Join the Interest List for Monthly Updates.” All of those CTAs will yield results far superior to the generic, shopworn “Click Here.”

4. Design for visibility
Your CTA isn’t a design element interfering with the aesthetics of the webpage or email. It’s the heart and soul of your marketing effort. You don’t want CTAs that blend tastefully into the background. You want buttons and graphics that pop off the page and call attention to themselves.

Bigger is better. Brighter is better. High contrast between text and graphic is better. Larger fonts are better.

Don’t crowd your CTA, either. Surround it with enough white space to make it stand apart from the other graphic elements on the page.

5. Put it in the spotlight
Don’t make your prospect work. Put your primary CTA above the fold of your email or webpage. Test the placement in several browsers to be sure the CTA is in a prominent position with no scrolling required. If the reader does have to scroll below the fold to read all of the text on the page, there’s no rule that says you can’t repeat the CTA at the end of the message, too. A 2007 survey of email marketers conducted by the Email Experience Council revealed that 59 percent of the respondents said a CTA above the fold was more important to conversion than branding.

6. Provide options
Include text links in the body of your message to give your prospects optional paths to conversion. This will provide insurance should your graphic CTA fall victim to an email image-blocking filter. You can also explore other conversion avenues: a toll-free number, Click to Call function or even a mailing address for people who aren’t comfortable placing orders over the internet.

7. Test and refine
Tinker with the process. Test different CTA configurations against a control to see which performs better. Imagine yourself achieving 100 percent conversion rates and keep striving for improvement.

Conversion is an ongoing effort to persuade a prospect to take an action that fulfills his need and your business goal. When the action is taken, you’ve made a convert. The next step is a customer for life.

PubMatic Launches Online Ad Network Pricing Service

May 2, 2008

Adrants

http://www.adrants.com/2008/04/pubmatic-launches-online-ad-network.php

Want to know what other advertisers are paying to advertise on websites? As a publisher, want to know how to competitively price your ads? Now you can with PubMatic’s AdPrice Index, a new service that gathers eCPM data from 3,000 website on a monthly basis. The index is compiled by independent statisticians Dr. Albert Madansky and Dr. Michele Madansky who found:

– On average, small niche Web sites (less than 1 million pages views per month) provided significantly stronger performance for advertisers than medium Web sites (1 million to 100 million page views per month) and large Web sites (over 100 million page views per month): eCPM averages for March 2008 are $1.18 for small Web sites, $0.34 for medium Web sites, and $0.38 for large Web sites. The large Web site segment includes a higher proportion of social networking, entertainment, and gaming sites than any other segment.

-Pricing data reflects net publisher monetization via ad networks and excludes ad networks’ share of ad spend as well as inventory sold directly by publishers to ad agencies or advertisers.

Additional findings include:

– In March ’08, 76% of small Web sites saw eCPMs under $1.00, compared to 96% of medium and 94% of large Web sites

– Across all Web sites, the range of eCPMs was $0.003 to $15.25.

– eCPMs for technology and gaming sites are higher on average than other categories: $0.82 and $0.69 respectively, for March ’08

– Technology eCPMs have declined by 12% from January ’08 ($0.92) to March ’08 ($0.82)

– eCPMs for social networking sites are among lowest by vertical, though they have increased 69% from $0.22 in January ’08 to $0.37 in March ’08

Pepsi Partners With MyClick For Digital Campaign

May 2, 2008

Media Post Publications

http://publications.mediapost.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=Articles.san&s=80438&Nid=41440&p=929064

by Mark Walsh, Friday, Apr 11, 2008 7:00 AM ET Pepsi-Cola has launched a wide-ranging digital campaign with snap-and-click marketer MyClick aimed at young Chinese consumers in connection with the upcoming Olympic Games.

The contest, targeting 12- to-24-year-olds, invites consumers to upload their photos and basic personal data including birth date, mobile phone number and nickname on any of six Chinese Web portals for a chance to be featured on Pepsi cans during the summer Olympics in Beijing.

Three winners will be chosen by fans, who will participate by downloading the MyClick application on one of the portals to access voting, blogging and status updates on their submissions.

MyClick’s mobile platform, based on image-recognition technology, will also let users take advantage of Pepsi promotions by pointing and shooting their mobile cameras at MyClick-enabled images on Pepsi cans as well as print, outdoor and other media.

The campaign, Pepsi’s third “Creative Challenge,” will be supported by TV advertising, point-of-sale promotions across retail outlets and other formats including the Web, mobile WAP sites and MMS text-messaging.

Pepsi is keen on tapping China’s fast-growing mobile market. The country’s Ministry of the Information Industry reported over 150 million mobile data users as of December 2007. By 2012, eMarketer expects the Asia-Pacific region to pull ahead of the U.S. in mobile ad spending, mainly because of the huge middle class in China and India that use mobile as their primary interactive screen.

Kevin Cohen, a senior advisor at Hong Kong-based MyClick, said the company’s snap-and-click technology doubles response rates compared to traditional SMS marketing by saving consumers from having to enter a shortcode or mobile Web address.

“In a market like China, the idea of tapping out keystrokes on a phone is so much more complicated because you’ve got all of the Chinese characters,” said Cohen. “This technology makes that experience much smoother.”

With the user information collected through the latest Creative Challenge, Pepsi and MyClick will potentially gain valuable marketing data on millions of young Chinese consumers.

Cohen emphasized that using the MyClick software involves an opt-in process, and that personal data gathered wouldn’t lead to a mobile marketing blitz.

“Trust has to be generated that a marketer isn’t going to bombard them with information, but treat them in a way that’s conscious of the personal nature of the mobile phone,” he said.

Profiles, Usage Patterns of US Internet Visitors Analyzed

May 2, 2008

Marketing VOX

http://www.marketingvox.com/profiles-usage-patterns-of-us-internet-visitors-analyzed-038055/?camp=newsletter&src=mv&type=textlink

US at-home and at-work internet users – numbering some 221 million – logged an average of 60 sessions/visits each (up 3.5% from February) and spent an average of 19 hours and 42 minutes online at their PCs (up 3.2%), according to data (pdf) from Nielsen Online.

Nielsen’s March data on US internet usage among all users:

nielsen-time-place-online-march-08-average-internet-usage2.jpg

  • The number of web pages visited per person increased 2.8%, from 2,370 in February to 2,437 in March.
  • An average of 105 domains were visited per person in March, a slight increase (1%) from the previous month.
  • Internet users spent an average of 52 seconds on each web page viewed, one second less than in March.

Nielsen also issued a demographic breakdown of internet usage by the 164.6 million at-home and at-work internet users who were “actively online in March”:

nielsen-time-place-online-march-08-active-us-audience-profile.jpg

Actively online men…

  • Spent a total of about 70 hours and 47 minutes at their PCs, on average.
  • Logged 62 sessions/visits, on average.
  • Constituted 48.7% of actively online visitors, viewing 2,622 web pages on average.

Actively online women…

  • Spent less PC time than male counterparts (64 hours, 47 minutes, on average).
  • Constituted the majority (51.3%) of active visitors, but viewed fewer pages on average (2,264).
  • Logged 58 sessions/visits, on average.

Those in the 35-49 age group made up 26.3% of all actively online internet users, spending an average of 92 hours and 44 minutes at their PCs, about 7 minutes more than the second-largest age group (those 55+), who accounted for 22.7% of all actively online internet users.

DoubleClick’s Self-Publishing Widget Ads May Monetize Social Networks

April 2, 2008

Marketing VOX

DoubleClick, now a Google property, is launching widget advertising into the self-publishing ad market.

Powered by Gigya Wildfire, the option enables advertisers to encourage viral dissemination of interactive ads across social media. Gigya will provide metrics for advertisers.

DoubleClick expects the medium to blossom into an effective way to monetize social networks.

A roadmap to creative success

April 2, 2008

iMedia Connection

By Tiffany Young

Part of what makes a campaign work is appropriateness of media and message for each stage of the purchase process. Here’s how to map it out.

I recently judged an online advertising competition and I found a very clear distinction between the great work and the rest of the work. The great online ads were few and far between — even in a competition in which agencies submitted their best efforts — because doing great work is difficult (no surprise).

As I looked at the best ads, here’s what I noticed: The very best ads surprised me. And while they were unexpected, they were not irrelevant or unfocused. Most were inventive without being obtuse. They were approachable and appropriate for their target audience. And finally, the very best ads engaged consumers by putting them in control of interactivity.

So those are some simple tips, right? Easy peasy! Just go out there and invent a campaign that’s surprisingly relevant and approachable while being fun and engaging. Unfortunately, that’s only the beginning.

The beauty of online advertising is that it encompasses so much. But this can also be the ugly part. Many media plans are presented with an emphasis on rich media. All the “other stuff” like newsletters, contextual content and keywords are often treated like value-adds, because they cost less or require less time to produce.

By emphasizing the most expensive online media, it’s easy to mistake the “other stuff” as unimportant. But each component of a comprehensive online media plan is an important piece of a puzzle that can help bring consumers from awareness to purchase. Taking time to map each piece to the purchase continuum can help your creative teams craft messaging that resonates with consumers right where they are, both emotionally and in terms of how much information they have about your brand.

It seems like common sense, but I don’t see it done that often. I imagine media plans as road maps for consumers. If I get each piece of communication right in a comprehensive online media campaign, I give consumers driving directions from where they are to where I want them to be.

So let’s start with the first turn on the map: awareness.

Run-of-site and run-of-network display ads can help build awareness of your brand through multiple impressions. These ads shouldn’t be complicated. If a consumer doesn’t know about you yet, he’s probably not going to drill down into multiple tabs of an expandable rich-media ad unit. Focus on a simple, compelling message that catches the attention of consumers and leaves them with a good impression of your brand.

Now as for relevance, section placements and e-newsletters place your brand in the context of something consumers choose to view. For instance, say they’re reading a home furnishings blog. You could serve a geo-targeted display or text ad for your brand that tells them “hey remember me? You just met me. Guess what, I’m in your area — funny huh? Yeah I’m totally relevant now.” This is also the point at which to share more of your brand with consumers. Splurge on the rich-media ads with more interactivity and information for these types of media placements wherever possible.

Moving along the purchase continuum, consumers eventually get to preference. They know you, they know you’re relevant to them and in their area now, but they have other options. When they search for products like yours, the search results they get should give them a reason to prefer your brand over the others. Are you better, cheaper, faster, more exclusive or more fun? Make sure your search results tell consumers why you’re the best option.

When consumers are interested in you and your brand, you’re in a great position. Unfortunately, many brands drop the ball at this point. A media plan doesn’t normally include what happens after consumers click, so it’s easy to get caught up in planning and forget to fulfill your end of the deal. Give consumers a compelling, relevant landing page to take the next step towards purchase. Make sure they’re glad they met you, and then make it easy for them to get what they want.

Lastly, once you’ve made it easy for consumers to purchase, utilize that success by putting measures in place to analyze your website. Make sure you’re set up to track results so you can garner the most learning for next time. Remember that a consumer’s first purchase can be the beginning of a long-term relationship, or it can also be her last purchase. Strong analysis is key to turning more first-time buyers into lasting, loyal customers.

By mapping creative executions and your media plan to the purchase continuum you can get the most out of every bit of your media budget while giving consumers a great online experience with your brand.