Advertising has changed since the days when you ran a TV ad or put an ad in a magazine or the paper. Sure those venues are till around and they can be effective but more and more advertising is moving to the web – and along with it goes some seriously big money. The problem is that not a lot of people really understand how advertising works online. That goes for advertisers as well as far too many advertising firms peddling their services. Here are a few things you need to know.
1. You need to have a goal – and it has to make sense. The main goal is always to drive revenue. People think a huge click through rate is the goal, but that is what people with no clue are peddling. Anyone can get a high click through rate – at least for a little while. What you want is a high conversion rate that drives higher revenues.
2. If you have to tell an advertising agent how to get your ads out to increase your revenue – you are dealing with the wrong people. If you need to tell someone that you want a Twitter account and Facebook page that along with the advertisement you are purchasing drive targeted traffic to your main page – get a new agency. All you should have to say is that you want a “sales lift and measurable ROI.” If they cannot come up with a way to do that they are useless to you.
3. Believe in your ad agency. In the old days, everything was about demographics. Are you targeting men between 18-26 or women that work at home – or whatever the target was. With online ads, things work a little different. People pop in and out of all sorts of places they may have never visited before the Internet was widespread. For example, Grannies that may have never purchased an adult magazine may now be cruising porn at home. You can’t really predict or know who is doing what online (legally at least in most cases) but you have to believe that your ad agency has some sort of magic to make it all work out. If you don’t, there is no point in hiring them.
Keep in mind that enacting really great large scale online advertising campaigns is all about spotting patterns that have been identified in huge databases. Very few people actually know how to spot those trends, fewer still actually exploit them correctly. Just because it is little known information doesn’t mean the little guy can’t take advantage of it. You just need to know how to spot an ad agency, or agent, that understands what is going on online rather than a print world relic that is pretending.