Brand Ad Spending to Pass Search in 2012

Digiday and Vizu Report: Online Brand Advertising 2012 Outlook

Consumers are migrating online at a rapid pace, and this year brand marketers are predicted to follow their lead. While online marketing budgets have traditionally been devoted to direct response advertising, a recent report from DigiDay shows that 2012 may be a year of change — brand advertising is positioned to take the lead in digital spending in 2012.

The report, which surveyed more than 450 digital marketing and media professionals, predicts that nearly 60% of digital advertising dollars will be devoted to brand advertising this year. For the first time in history, marketers could potentially spend more on brand advertising than on direct response advertising.

Brands: Projected spending increase over 2011 and allocation of 2012 budgets

Source: Digiday; Online Brand Advertising 2012 Outlook

According to Forbes contributor, Robert Hof, “the findings also come as some analysts, such as J.P. Morgan’s Doug Anmuth, also sees a shift in growth prospects from search and other direct response ads to branding or image ads.” A recent report from Forrester mirrors these predictions and expects the search market share in interactive ad spend to drop significantly in the coming years.

Search Retargeting and Brand Marketing

Despite these predictions, brand marketers and agencies are skeptical that media sellers can even reach their narrowly defined target audiences. According to Digiday’s report, “only 6 percent of brands and 16 percent of agencies surveyed said they “strongly believe” media sellers’ claims that they can reach the custom or niche audiences that brands seek.” As brand marketers explore channels for display advertising, search retargeting’s ability to target in-market ‘hand raisers’ could prove to be a useful tactic to successfully reach those ‘niche’ audiences through online advertising.

Download the full report here >>


From MarketingLand: Display’s the Thing

James Green, CEO at Magnetic and contributing MarketingLand columnist, talks about why display advertising is on track to be the hottest area of internet marketing in his latest article — Display’s the Thing.

One source comes from Forrester, which anticipates that search spending will shift to digital display. This is a result of high PPC for paid search and the rise of biddable display media. Forrester also predicts that display will account for 36% of interactive spend in five years.

Interestingly enough, James also credits Google as a viable source for the future of display. The proof is in the pudding — Google, which is the king of keyword search and AdWords, is now focused on display ads and mobile. James claims “Google’s reliance on display ads for growth speaks volumes.”

Visit “Display’s the Thing” on MarketingLand for the complete story.

Understanding Keywords In Search Retargeting

Its one thing to know what search retargeting is, but it’s another to understand how to make search retargeting work. At the heart of search retargeting are keywords (AKA – search data). In a new article on Search Engine Land, Magnetic’s Aaron Doades, Director of Product Management, analyzes keyword level targeting and how it differs from search engine marketing to display advertising.

When launching a search retargeting campaign, marketers should know how the characteristics of both search and display fit into this targeting strategy.

On one hand, keyword lists can derive from SEM campaigns. However, marketers should understand that search retargeting is an extension of SEM and keyword lists should scale beyond your search campaigns. Magnetic’s keyword generation tool helps marketers build extensive keyword lists that can be used in display. Search retargeting sits in the mid-funnel area and is designed to push consumers down the funnel. This differs from SEM terms, which are typically found very low in the consumer funnel.

In the article, Aaron uses a hypothetical example:

An SEM campaign for Best Buy might be targeting the term “Best Buy 50 inch Sony plasma TV sale.” This user is likely to convert in a small window of time, as he/she clearly knows exactly what they’re looking for and even the store they’re looking to buy from. However, if a search retargeting company were to target users who searched for this term, they’d be showing an ad to someone who has most likely already converted and would therefore be wasting ad impressions, and more importantly ad dollars.

To read Aaron’s complete article on Search Engine Land, click here.

Evolution of Search: Integration Across Digital Channels

In the latest installment of “All Marketers Are Geniuses,” Magnetic CEO James Green sits down with NetPlus CEO Robin Neifield to discuss the latest trends taking place in search marketing. Robin shared with Magnetic her take on how the search experience is changing for “searchers” and how this will impact digital advertising strategies.

This recent segment, titled “Keeping up With the Searchers,” touches upon key trends revealed during the holiday planning season, including dedicated budgets for social media. According to Robin, the growing role of social media “can be a powerful conduit to resources that may supplant some pure searching activity.” Indeed, consumers are tapping into their networks to “search” for information or recommendations. Google has been an early adapter to this logic, evidenced by their recent integration of Google + in its search results. Robin points out that “integrated search results now give users more choice in the kind of content that will meet their need and drive users to a broader variety of locations.”

In addition to a variety of content, users also have a variety of search devices at their fingertips. As users move from laptop to smart phone to tablet throughout their day, how are marketers to “keep up with the searchers?”

According to Robin, “integration across digital channels is now imperative…We have to understand the entire life cycle of the consumer and their varied needs and attention at different times and in different channels.”  In addition, she asserts that data is the ‘backbone of good planning,’ emphasizing how critical it is for any good display campaign. In order to succeed in the evolving digital space, Robin contends that marketers have to be “equal parts psychologist, analyst, creative and visionary.”

Read full article here

Magnetic Launches Search Retargeting Report

As the future of digital advertising continues to develop, Magnetic today released a report titled “The Future is Now,” a market analysis that explores the changes taking place in the digital industry by specifically looking at the growth of display advertising and search.

The report, which includes insights from top digital experts and industry leaders, is the first research initiative dedicated entirely to analyzing the power of search retargeting.  In particular, it argues that the future of digital advertising ultimately lies within the combination of search data and display advertisements.  As Magnetic’s CEO, James Green, suggests “There is no more compelling time to put a display or text ad in front of someone than after they search for a specific product…the report reinforces this belief and highlights the promise of search retargeting as the vehicle for placing your brand in front of the customer at the right point in the purchase decision cycle.” The report also highlights that although search spending is expected to double by 2016, display advertising will nearly triple (reaching an estimated $27 Billion).

In addition to discussing the growth patterns of display and search, the report also covers topics such as :

  • Effect of customer demand on digital technology
  • The concept of bringing SEM beyond the search engine
  • Future opportunities and best practices for search retargeting

To read more about how display is expected to drive innovation in search and search retargeting, download the report now>>

In Digital Advertising, “Only the Smart Will Survive…”

In the most recent installment of the “All Marketers are Geniuses” series, Magnetic founder, Josh Shatkin-Margolis, sits down with the VP of Media Technology and Analytics at Fuor Digital, Josh Dreller, to further analyze and understand the current trends that taking place in the SEM sphere and digital media industry.

In this latest segment, titled “All Marketers are Geniuses: ‘Smart is In,’” both Josh and Josh address the importance of media measurement and the various ways marketers are reaching consumers through multi-channel platforms in the digital space.

As a self-described media technologist, Dreller touches on the relationship between analytics and search. According to Dreller, search and data go hand in hand. As he puts it, quite simply, “sure, anyone can load a Google AdWords campaign and bid on some keywords, but they’re not going to be successful unless they have the ability to evaluate the performance and optimize accordingly. Frankly, without the data, you’re just going to waste your money.”

The article goes on to discuss the influence of web analytics on creativity, and Dreller concludes that although data may create roadblocks for some graphic artists, it also has the ability to positively challenge these designers. As Dreller notes, “deep creativity within boundaries might actually be a much more advanced form of creativity than purely free form art – especially if you can generate the sales that a struggling business needs with thousands of jobs on the line.” Ultimately, Dreller recognizes that in order to achieve the best results, a balance must exist between data and creativity where “the decision maker takes into account what the data is telling them as well as what they think will influence their audience to take position action for their business.”

Towards the end of the article, Dreller encourages advertisers to think more holistically in terms of the way they evaluate the performance of SEM. Rather than narrowing in on the success of individual keywords, Dreller argues that consumers are continuously engaging with keywords throughout the buying process, and therefore advertisers must be aware of the entire keyword landscape.

While the article goes on to discuss topics such as hyper-targeting and the future of measurement, one of Dreller’s most memorable conclusions is his suggestion that that all marketers are true geniuses because they ultimately have no choice.  As Dreller contends, “all sizzle and no steak is out”—  only the smart will survive.

Read the full story here>>

Advertising Week 2011: The Importance of Data and Storytelling

As the eighth annual Advertising Week comes to a close, a few themes remain clear: despite the recent economic downturn, advertising dollars are flowing, media innovation is expanding, and new marketing techniques are governing the future of the industry.

In a recent Wall Street Journal article titled “Data and Storytelling Come Together at Advertising Week,” blogger Ty McMahan recaps one Ad Week session titled “Masters of Monetization.”

Interestingly, the panel itself, comprised of digital power players from companies like AT&T, Facebook and Groupon, addressed very little of actual dollars and quite a bit about the concepts of data and storytelling. In particular, the panelists argued that as multi-billion-dollar digital advertising businesses emerge almost overnight, the only way to continue such growth and remain relevant to consumers is to merge audience data with creative content.

According to these masters of monetization, an incredible amount of audience information exists that could be used effectively in terms of marketing initiatives. As McMahan writes, “the wealth of data available and the speed at which it can be analyzed and meaningfully applied is changing the advertising industry. Yet, companies who provide that type of technology face a big challenge in educating the industry on how to put that data to work to better their business.”  Thus, according to the panelists, in order to create effective campaigns, advertisers must leverage this data to learn about their audiences and ultimately drive performance.

Interestingly, however, the panel contended that technology is only half the battle. As McMahan points out, “if data will lead consumers to water…creative will make them drink.” Hence, storytelling in ad campaigns is equally as important as targeting audiences. In order for messages to be perceived and processed, creative content must be interesting and engaging.

Check out the complete article here >>

Search Enters its Teenage Years

Happy Birthday, Google! The search engine celebrated its 13th birthday last week, marking a year of growth spurts and growing pains. Search Engine Watch rounds up the top 12 Google stories from the past year, including the launch of Google +, antitrust scrutiny, and Android innovations.

As Google enters its teenage years, there’s one story is of top interest; how they make their billions. Last year, 97% of Google’s $32.2 billion in revenue was made through advertising, according to WordStream.

Without question, their search platform has shaped the digital industry and is now carving a space for search retargeting within online advertising. Search retargeting represents the evolution of search through its ability to leverage the power of search data beyond the search engine. Cheers to the future of search and search retargeting.

Five Tips for Site and Search Retargeting

Collective’s latest newsletter, AMP Audience Insights features Magnetic in their Sepemtber edition, showing the importance of following up with intent consumers through site and search retargeting. To successfully carry a user though the purchase funnel, it is key to follow up with that user after they visit your site or after they have searched for your product or service. Magnetic’s founder Josh Shatkin-Margolis shares five actions that are imperative to executing the most effective search retargeting campaign.

    1. Define Goals: It is not enough to simply say you want to follow up on all those new or existing customers. It is important to understand your customer’s path to conversion. Don’t simply create a goal for your campaign based on clicks or page views.
    2. Identify Audiences: This is where companies like Collective and Magnetic work well together. There are multiple customer segments for your product and there are multiple paths to conversion. Learn them. Understand the keywords each would be searching for. This is a crucial exercise
    3. Select Inventory: From comScore 250 to ad exchange inventory and even affinity sites, there are a lot of ways to get in front of the right user at the right time and with the right message. The beauty of site and search retargeting is that you have the ability to control what inventory you want for your brand message. Grab the reigns of your campaign and ensure brand safety while targeting the most relevant audience online.
  1. Design Relevant Creative: Serve flash, graphical and video content that is relevant to the targeted audience segment. It is important to have creative that have a clear call to action. If you are conquesting, mention the competitor’s product and provide a clear reason for picking your products. If you are targeting the upper funnel, be informative. If you are targeting the bottom funnel, mention the price or offer a deal close to the customer. Customize the message for users who have already converted to thank them or up sell them with accessories.
  2. Tag, Baby, Tag: Conversion tags provide insight into successful optimization by helping determine which keywords, data sources, recency of searches along with media, creative, geo, etc. are driving results. When it comes to optimization, conversion tags become your best friend.

U.S. Ad Spending Rises, Online Fuels Advertising Growth

This week, Kantar Media released a study showing that global advertising industry has rebounded more quickly than expected, with a 3.2% rise in total advertising expenditures in the first six months of 2011.

According to emarketer, online advertising will prove to be a key driver of total media spend, accounting for 16.1% of total media spending in 2011 and nearly 22% by 2015.



It’s important to note that both search and display continue to be crucial elements in online ad budgets — display spending rose 13% and search nearly 9%.

It seems things are really looking up, especially for the digital display ad market. Recently, Search Engine Land columnist, Josh Dreller covered why display may out pace search – he called out that the fact is that paid search is a pull medium, it requires users to search on an engine to trigger an ad, while display is a push medium which simply requires page views to deliver [normally multiple] ads to the user. At the end of the day, Dreller cites that the page views online are growing exponentially faster than searches on search engines.

Kantars report went on to highlight the big spenders in the first half of 2011 – to learn more and see the top 10 list, click here.