Blog Post

The New Media Playbook for Advertisers: The Skeptic

12/27/2022 - Sierra Ducey

Digital marketing best practices have evolved a lot over the past decade. Today’s consumers expect a seamless brand experience across all channels, including both traditional and legacy. And a HubSpot study found that consumers love a positive brand experience — 90% will purchase more from a brand if the overall experience is enjoyable, and 93% will be repeat customers.

While it might seem daunting to keep up with consumer habits and new platforms, it’s also an exciting time filled with opportunity. People spend lots of time listening to podcasts, scrolling social feeds, and streaming live events — all of which offer unique and high-impact advertising opportunities for brands to get their message in front of captive consumers. Simply put, today, platforms like Hulu, TikTok, and Spotify are where consumers are spending more and more of their time. Insider Intelligence estimates that we spend an average of 8 hours and 14 minutes daily interacting with digital media.

Still Skeptical?

Advertisers should be where their audience is, and for most brands, that includes these newer mediums. So brands must start investing their media budgets into emerging channels, like DOOH, digital audio, gaming, and CTV.

Some advertisers still haven’t made the jump for various reasons, including an uncertain budget, time, resources, questions, knowledge, etc. However, a specific group of individuals are interested in testing and trying these new emerging channels. These forward-thinking marketing trailblazers have concerns about being able to measure the impact or the success of these channels in comparison to historically used tactics and solutions that currently produce solid results. We’ve coined these “the skeptics.”

Skeptics are aware of emerging channels but are wary of whether they can meet their current advertising benchmarks through these channels.

Moving Beyond the Skepticism: Key Recommendations for Updating your Advertising Playbook

Advertisers and marketers have to answer to certain digital marketing KPI benchmarks to warrant the marketing investment they’ve received. This creates undue pressure for advertising to continue to succeed — many times creating an environment where it’s too risky to try new things when traditional platforms have been successful.

However, as consumer habits continue to diversify across platforms, solely leaning on traditional methods will start to hurt your brand. So where can skeptics go from here

We’ve outlined four key recommendations that ride the fine line for skeptics. You won’t be tasked with making major investments or drastically shifting your strategy, but you’ll still be able to reach audiences on new platforms that you weren’t previously engaging with.

  1. Analyze your existing model.

There are more options than ever for advertisers to place their budgets. Social media, blogging, content marketing, influencer marketing, audio, and video all have unique benefits. Meanwhile, new metrics within some of these platforms, like favorites, shares, likes, and comments, that never existed before social media need to be considered when analyzing how you’re faring against digital marketing KPIs.

When you look closely at your current playbook, you might identify gaps in your existing and prospective customers as to who they are, how they spend their time, and what they enjoy. Audience modeling will provide an in-depth analysis that will help you understand where you need to place your brand to ensure you’re always where your audience is.

This is a necessary first step for skeptics, as it will likely uncover holes in your strategy. While your traditional channels and methods might be doing the trick, if you’re completely missing opportunities to connect with audiences, you aren’t working as efficiently as possible with your budget. This alone should be justification for making a change.

  1. Establish benchmarks for success.

Before making any significant business decisions, meet with your team and partners to get alignment on what success looks like. Change management is a complex process. As just mentioned, the new marketing playbook might require a new set of benchmarks to understand success. Have you considered how top-funnel tactics like DOOH and digital audio affect conversions down the line? How does your organic social strategy support paid efforts?

Research programmatic advertising standards to set realistic programmatic advertising KPIs that can quantify your efforts. It’s essential that your entire team buys into omnichannel marketing best practices to ensure a streamlined workflow for internal stakeholders and a seamless experience for external customers. Getting every skeptic on board initially might be a slower process, but the long-term ROI will be more than worth it.

  1. Start small by repurposing existing ad units.

Although advertising on emerging platforms is essential, it’s also important to be realistic. After a deep dive into your current strategy, you might be excited to jump into these new platforms. Remember that there’s a lot to be learned, as each platform has unique benefits, opportunities, and challenges.

So to not get ahead of yourself, make a mistake, and risk losing the buy-in of key stakeholders, start small and build as you get comfortable and find success.

You can apply the test-and-try approach on new platforms, using assets from your existing programs without increasing your budget for creative processes. For example, you can repurpose an existing video to use as advertisements on connected TV or radio spots to use within digital audio and podcasts.

With solid analytical practices, you’ll be able to directly compare and track how each channel is working to reach specific digital marketing KPIs. Reporting tools allow you to track what is and isn’t working and learn how to find your target audience on social media while driving an effective ROI for the business.

  1. Think and act holistically.

survey from Morning Consult found that consumers are turned off by seeing the same ad repeatedly. A full 69% of U.S. adults think streaming service ads are repetitive, and 79% are bothered by the disruptive nature of these advertisements. An omnichannel approach provides visibility into the customer journey, ensuring potential customers don’t associate your brand with a negative experience.

Consumers think about the overall customer experience versus a channel-by-channel experience. For example, when looking into the benefits of CTV advertising, consider your comprehensive video and brand-building strategies instead of a channel-centric strategy.

Although each channel does have differences, what’s more important is how each new investment impacts your overall media investments and, therefore, your overall digital advertising strategy.

The Bottom Line

A holistic brand experience goes beyond advertising — it requires all touchpoints to serve the consumer. To accomplish this, brands need to gain a deeper understanding of consumer behaviors, preferences, and attitudes. They also must not be afraid to create more opportunities for engagement with customers on new channels.

Ignoring the transforming media landscape has far-reaching risks. For example, CTV isn’t completely replacing linear. However, as more consumers turn to streaming platforms, you will miss important demographics of the modern consumer by only focusing on a small sliver of your potential channels. If your customers are spending their time consuming digital audio or streaming TV, you should have touchpoints there to continue their journey.

Ready to Dive Into New Media Channels?

The more gaps you leave, the more opportunities you miss. As consumer behavior, preferences, and attitudes change, brands must remain agile in how they approach media planning, buying, and execution. Digilant partners with brands and their agencies to provide innovative teams, technology, data, and omnichannel inventory to stay in lockstep with today’s consumers.

We work across a full suite of industry-leading vendors atop our analytic expertise and top-tier service to ensure our clients are equipped with the best media strategies and plans to reach their target audiences and goals. By downloading “The New Media Playbook for Advertisers,” you, too, will see just how much new media channels can boost your business’s advertising efforts.

Are you interested in learning more about future-proof advertising solutions and getting the most out of omnichannel marketing? Contact us to find out how digital marketing solutions can boost your business’s growth.

Sign up for our newsletter to learn more about Digilant.